Structure in Liquid Triglycerides
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The structure and distribution of triglycerides (TAGs) in fats affects the properties of the final products, in terms of texture, appearance and mouth feel. A few debates and models have been developed on the distribution of TAG molecules in the liquid, but they are not consistent with the actual density of oils or our X-ray scattering (XRS) data. Four pure liquid TAG samples were examined by XRS at temperatures up to 210 °C. WAXS data are consistent with the liquid phase of alkanes and other aliphatic molecules. SAXS data are similar to those produced by alcohols and fatty acids, whose molecules associate via polar groups. Therefore, we developed a new conceptual model to describe the clustering of liquid TAGs as “Loose Multimers” and from it estimated that they consist approximately of 5 to 9 molecules. The average number of molecules decreases with temperature and increases with molecular weight.