The Effect of Different Amounts of Solvent (Acetone) on the Extraction of Fat in Junk Foods

Pre-University Paper 2019 25 Pages

Physics - Other


Table of Contents


Research Paper

Chapter I-Introduction
Background of the Study
Significance of the Study
Statement of the Objectives
Scope and Limitation
Review of Related Literature

Chapter II-Methodology

Chapter III-Results and Discussion

Chapter IV- Conclusion

Chapter V-Recommendations

Chapter VI-References

Chapter VII-Acknowledgements

Chapter VIII- Appendices


The study, “The effect of different amounts of solvent (acetone) on the extraction of fat”, was conducted to determine the fat content of junk foods using varying amounts of solvent . With the statistics that shows that Filipino’s consumption of in-home snack (junk foods) rose up to 13 percent in the total snack category in the Philippines from March 2015 to March 2017. This study aims to expose the crushed junk food to different amounts of solvent for a day, to measure the amount of fat extracted after the extraction using different amounts of solvent, and to compare the extraction efficiency of the different amounts of solvent.

The researcher conducted a four-step procedure: preparation of samples, extraction of fats from the junk foods, evaporation process, and recording the results of the extracted fats.

Data of all 3 different amount of solvents were recorded then compared to the percentage of fat extraction and extraction efficiency. It was found that there is no significance difference on the different amounts of solvents used.

Therefore, the formulated hypothesis is therefore rejected. Using the one factor analysis of variance, it can be inferred that there is a no significant difference in the amount of solvent used among the three setups.



Background of the Study

Junk food is defined as, "those commercial products, including candy, bakery goods, ice cream, salty snacks, and soft drinks which have little or no nutritional value but do have plenty of calories, salt, and fats. While not all fast foods are junk foods, most are. Fast foods are ready-to-eat foods served promptly after ordering." (Smith, 2006).

Official figures show that Filipino’s consumption of in-home snack (junk foods) rose up to 13 percent in the total snack category in the Philippines from March 2015 to March 2017 (Kantar Worldpanel, 2017).

Wary of the desire of Filipinos to eat huge amount of junk food, especially chips and sodas, as it could result to more Filipinos being vulnerable to diseases such as: obesity, diabetes, hypertension, gall bladder stones, fatty liver, and other cardiovascular conditions (Leachon, 2016).

Junk foods usually loads of saturated fats, too much saturated fat in diet will cause people to put on weight and obese being overweight is a risk to the health of heart and causes other disease.

A lot of studies have shown that eating foods high in sugar and fat actually changes the chemical activity of the brain making it more dependent on such foods. A study conducted at the University of Montreal on mice showed that they suffered with withdrawal symptoms after their regular junk food diet was discontinued. In humans, these withdrawal symptoms can lead to the inability to deal with stress, make you feel depressed and eventually you would turn back to those foods to comfort yourself and handle these feelings. Soon, you may be caught in a vicious cycle even before you know it. Also, by consuming too much fast food you may lose out on essential nutrients like amino acid tryptophan, the lack of which can increase feelings of depression. An imbalance of fatty acids is another reason why people who consume more junk food are at a higher risk of depression. (NDTV Food Desk, 2017)

Significance of the Study

Fats are one of the major constituents of junk foods, and plays a major role in determining the overall physical characteristics, such as flavor, texture, mouthfeel and appearance. For this reason, it is difficult to develop low-fat alternatives of many foods, because once the fat is removed some of the most important physical characteristics are lost. Researcher tries to investigate the extraction efficiency of different amounts of solvent. In fact, solvent extraction techniques are one of the most commonly used methods of isolating fats from foods and of determining the total fat content of foods.

Statement of the Objectives

The main purpose of this study is to determine the fat content of junk foods using varying amounts of solvent. Specifically, it aims to:

- To expose the crushed junk food to different amounts of solvent for a day.
- To measure the amount of fat extracted after the extraction using different amounts of solvent.
- To compare the extraction efficiency of the different amounts of solvent.


For the purpose of this study, the following hypotheses was formulated:

- If the amount of solvent is increasing, then extraction efficiency will be affected.

Scope and Limitations of the Study

This study was conducted to determine the fat content of junk foods using varying amounts of solvent.

A major limitation of this study was the setting of the laboratory set-up that needs to have a strict laboratory setup; classroom - type of laboratory was used by the researcher. However, the digital weighing scale was used has only the whole number calibration, it doesn’t have the decimal calibration that made results into whole number only. Furthermore, the logistical and time limitations of this study, made these experiments difficult to conduct.

Review of Related Literature

1. Total Fat

This number indicates how much fat is in a single serving of food and it's usually measured in grams. Although eating too much fat can lead to obesity and related health problems, our bodies do need some fat every day. Fats are an important source of energy — they contain twice as much energy per gram as carbohydrate or protein. Fats provide insulation and cushioning for the skin, bones, and internal organs. Fat also carries and helps store certain vitamins (A, D, E, and K) (Dowshen, 2018).

2. Junk Food

Junk food simply means an empty calorie food. An empty calorie food is a high calorie or calorie rich food which lacks in micronutrients such as vitamins, minerals, or amino acids, and fiber but has high energy (calories). These foods don’t contain the nutrients that your body needs to stay healthy. Hence, these foods that has poor nutritional value is considered unhealthy and may be called as junk food. Junk food is an informal term applied to some foods which are perceived to have little or no nutritional value, but which also have ingredients considered unhealthy when eaten regularly, or to those considered unhealthy to consume at all. The term junk food was coined as a slang in the public interest in 1972 by Michael Jacobson, Director of the Center for Science, Washington D.C. What makes these foods to be called as “Junk” is that it contains high levels of refined sugar, white flour, trans fat and polyunsaturated fat, salt, and numerous food additives such as monosodium glutamate and tartrazine; at the same time, it is lacking in proteins, vitamins, essential minerals, fiber, among other healthy attributes.

These foods have little enzyme producing vitamins and minerals and but contain high level of calories in their place. A food that is high in fat, sodium, and/or sugar and provides high calories yet useless in value is generally known as a junk food. On the contrary, junk food is easy to carry, purchase and consume. Generally, a junk food is given a very attractive appearance by adding food additives and colors to enhance flavor, texture and for increasing long shelf life. (Ashakiran & Deepthi, 2012)

3. Acetone

Acetone is a solvent and very popular one in industry for two reasons: 1) it is a prime solvent for biological compounds and 2) it evaporates quickly making it easy to remove from the desire substance it dissolves. It is also a non-polar solvent so it also dissolves in water (like ethanol). Since it is non-polar it can only dissolve other non-polar molecules.

Fat (lipids) are non-polar. That means fats dissolve in acetone. It is in your body naturally as a result of breaking down fat, that is why users the ketogenic diet often buys a device that tries to measure the acetone in their air expelled from their lungs. It can be used to determine whether fat is being dissolved in the body or not. Because it is non-polar it can’t break down polar molecules and many of the membranes in organic chemistry have molecules that are a combination of polar and non-polar molecules with the polar facing outwards and the non-polar inwards on the inside of the member. Acetone can be safely transported around the body and moved to the liver which breaks it down non-volatile compounds. To break these down (like I do to turn algea into oil I can burn in my tractor) you have to use soxhlet extraction.

4. Solvent Fat Extraction

Most older lab methods involve solvent extraction and weighing of the lipid residue after solvent evaporation. For crude fat, diethyl ether is often the preferred solvent as it is relatively non-polar and extracts most non-polar components (triacylglycerol, sterols, tocopherols and similar compounds), but does poorly at extracting the polar lipids, such as glycolipids and phospholipids). “Crude fat” is often synonymous with “ether extract” and generally refers to “free” lipids that can be extracted into less polar solvents such as petroleum ether or diethyl ether. “Bound” lipids require more polar solvents for extraction (Moreau,2005)

Choice of solvents is based on solvent characteristics. The considerations should include use of high solvent power (non-polar solvents) for lipids; and use of a low solvent power (polar solvents) for proteins, amino acids and carbohydrates. In some instances, this may be a single solvent, or may be a combination of 2 or more solvents in specific ratios. A single solvent is generally preferred to minimize fractionation and time requirements for phase/solvent separation for lipid fraction isolation. A single solvent system usually allows for more complete recovery of the solvent if desired and/or necessary from an environmental standpoint. There is no single solvent that is ideal for all samples.

The selected solvent(s) should have a relatively low boiling point to allow low temperature evaporation and leave no residue. Ideally, the selected solvent(s) should be to use (non-flammable and non-toxic in both liquid and vapor states). Waste disposal, either by evaporation into the air or liquid disposal into wastewater should always be considered. The solvent(s) should easily and thoroughly penetrate the sample to provide for more complete lipid extraction. The solvent(s) should also be relatively inexpensive and be non-hygroscopic.

The commonly used organic (polar) solvents include petroleum ether, diethyl ether, chloroform, methanol, ethanol, isopropanol, n-butanol, acetone, acetonitrile, isopropyl ether, dioxane, tetrahydrofuran, dichloromethane, pentane, hexane, benzene, cyclohexane, iso-octanol, or mixtures of these solvents. Carcinogenicity, toxicity, flammability, hygroscopicity and cost must all be considered in choosing a solvent.



I. Experimental Units

Samples were used in this experiment was Marty’s Cracklin' (junk food). The sample was chosen with regards that it is often ate by the students.

II. Variables and Controls

The independent variable of this experiment are the acetone and sample junk foods.

The fat content and extraction efficiency accumulated in each of the set-ups serves as the dependent variable.

Factor such as the weight factor of each junk foods for each setup are kept constant throughout the conduct of the study.

II. Materials and Apparatus

A. Preparation of Samples

The materials used for the preparation of samples were 90 g sample junk foods, 18 pieces of 250 mL beaker, mortar and pestle, and digital weighing scale.



ISBN (eBook)
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effect different amounts solvent acetone extraction junk foods

Title: The Effect of Different Amounts of Solvent (Acetone) on the Extraction of Fat in Junk Foods