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Reduction of nitrite levels in fresh lettuces with aqueous chlorine dioxide treatment

Hao, Jianxiong, Li, Huiying, Wan, Yangfang, Liu, Haijie
International journal of food science & technology 2015 v.50 no.3 pp. 652-659
chlorine dioxide, diet, humans, lettuce, nitrate reductase, nitrites
Leafy vegetables are the major source of nitrite intake in the human diet, and technological processing to control the nitrite levels is necessary to the harvested vegetables destined for consumption. In this work, the effect of aqueous chlorine dioxide (ClO₂) treatment on the nitrite levels in fresh lettuces during storage was studied. The results showed the appropriate aqueous ClO₂solutions treatment (30 and 45 mg L⁻¹, 10 min) could reduce the nitrite levels or retard the peak occurrence in fresh lettuces during storage. The reduction of nitrite levels in fresh lettuces with appropriate ClO₂treatment can be attributed to two aspects including the inactivation of nitrate reductase directly and the reduction of the bacterial populations. This study will provide a useful method to reduce the nitrite levels in fresh lettuces destined for short storage followed by consumption.