Food is any substance consumed by organisms to provide nutritional support. It is usually of animal or plant origin, and contains essential nutrients, such as carbohydrates, fats, proteins, vitamins or minerals. The substance is ingested by organisms to provide energy, maintain life or stimulate growth.


Why food supplements?


Food supplements are products intended to supplement the nutrition. They can provide nutrients either extracted from natural food sources or generated synthetically. The class of nutrients compounds includes amino acids, fatty acids, vitamins, fiber and minerals and the addition increase the quality of the nutrition. Not all food supplements are confirmed as being essential to life, but they are marketed as having a positive biological effect. Desired positive effects are conservation of health, remedy of malnutrition or growth control.


Why growth control?


Growth control is important in many areas of life. First, it is a helpful instrument to increase growth of children, either humans and animals, or for a better wound healing. Second, it is an important instrument for control growth of plants (e.g. to increase growth of crop plants or to decrease growth of weed). At third it is a very valuable instrument to decrease tissues like tumors.


What could be a food supplement?


Monoglycerides of different fatty acids are a class of substances of higher interest. One selected example is 1-Monobutyrin. It has a positive effect in angiogenesis. Angiogenesis is the physiological process of building new blood vessels and therefore a major part of growing. It is used in animal husbandry.


Fig. 1 Chemical structure of 1-Monobutyrin


Why animal husbandry?


The increasing worldwide hunger for meat entails a high efficiency in animal husbandry. This includes fast growing animals as well as keep them alive at good health. The efficiency depends on the content of the food supplement. The content is part of the formulation and well known.


But how much food supplement does the animal receive?


Depending on the type of animal, it has one or more stomachs, a small intestine and a colon. It is of interest how much of the food supplement remain at which position inside the animal. This can be made by 1H-qNMR.


Why 1H-qNMR?


The quantitative proton NMR is a method to control the quality of the food supplements easily and rapidly. A high number of substances being contained in the food supplement can be identified and quantified in a sample, prepared only one time! Our company is extremely experienced in NMR spectroscopy using this technique every single day.