Main content area

Comparison of cheeses from goats fed 7 forages based on a new health index

Giorgio, D., Di Trana, A., Di Napoli, M.A., Sepe, L., Cecchini, S., Rossi, R., Claps, S.
Journal of dairy science 2019 v.102 no.8 pp. 6790-6801
Festuca arundinacea, Hordeum vulgare, Pisum sativum, Trifolium alexandrinum, Triticosecale, Vicia faba, Vicia sativa, animal feeding, antioxidant activity, fatty acid composition, fatty acids, forage, goat cheese, goats, grasses, health promotion, legumes, polyphenols, Mediterranean region
This study proposed the General Health Index of Cheese (GHIC) as an indicator for the presence of health-promoting compounds in cheese and compared the antioxidant capacity and phenolic and fatty acid contents of cheeses from goats consuming 7 forage species. Ninety-one homogeneous Red Syrian goats were randomly assigned to 1 of 7 feeding treatments (Festuca arundinacea, Hordeum vulgare, Triticosecale, Pisum sativum, Trifolium alexandrinum, Vicia sativa, and Vicia faba minor). The housed goat groups received the scheduled forage ad libitum. Forage species affected the antioxidant capacity, the phenolic and fatty acid contents, the Health Promoting Index, and the GHIC. Trifolium alexandrinum, Triticosecale, and Hordeum vulgare showed a clear advantage in terms of beneficial fatty acids content in goat cheese. Cheese from the Triticosecale group also showed a high antioxidant capacity value even if its polyphenol content was intermediate compared with others. Trifolium alexandrinum and Triticosecale had the highest value of the new index GHIC. This comparison suggests that there are important differences in fatty acid profile and polyphenol content among cheeses from goats fed grasses and legumes commonly used in the Mediterranean area. In this first approach, GHIC index, which combines the positive components found in cheese, seems to be a useful tool to provide an indication concerning the general health value of the product.