Interpretive Summary: Nutrient and Maillard reaction product concentrations of commercially available pet foods and treats
By: Patrícia M Oba, Nagiat Hwisa, Xinhe Huang, Keith R Cadwallader, Kelly S Swanson
When heat is applied to food, the structure of sugars and proteins are rearranged. Some of the newly formed compounds are Maillard reaction products (MRP). The Maillard reaction can form melanoidins that improve color, flavor, and aroma, but can also lead to the loss of essential amino acids and the formation of advanced glycation end-products that may negatively affect animal health. Most commercial pet foods and treats are heated to improve safety, shelf life, nutritional characteristics, texture, and nutrient digestion, but MRP formation can be a problem. Because commercial pet foods are fed to domestic cats and dogs throughout their entire lives, quantifying MRP and understanding the variables that influence their formation is critical. The goals of this study were to determine the amount of MRP in commercial pet foods and treats, estimate MRP ingestion in pets, and correlate MRP with dietary macronutrient concentrations. Wet foods and dry treats contained more fructoselysine than dry foods, while dry foods contained more 5-hydroxymethyl-2-furfural. According to our findings, wet diets will result in higher total MRP, carboxymethyllysine, and fructoselysine intake than dry diets. While these findings are valuable, in vivo testing is needed to determine if and how MRP consumption affect pet health.
Read the full article in the Journal of Animal Science.