Rheological Behavior of Food Gels

  • J. A. Lopes da Silva
  • M. Anandha Rao
Part of the Food Engineering Series book series (FSES)


Rheological studies can provide much useful information on sol-gel and gel-sol transition, as well as on the characteristics of a gel. There are several definitions of what a gel is that are based on either phenomenological and/or molecular criteria. (1953) defined a gel to consist of polymeric molecules cross-linked to form a tangled interconnected network immersed in a liquid medium. (1949) defined it as a two-component system (e.g., gelling polymer and the solvent, water or aqueous solution in foods) formed by a solid finely dispersed or dissolved in a liquid phase, exhibiting solid-like behavior under deformation; in addition, both components extend continuously throughout the entire system, each phase being interconnected. At the molecular level, gelation is the formation of a continuous network of polymer molecules, in which the stress-resisting bulk properties (solid-like behavior) are imparted by a framework of polymer chains that extends throughout the gel phase. Further, gel setting involves formation of cross-links, while softening or liquefaction (often called melting) involves their destruction.


Storage Modulus Whey Protein Junction Zone Food Hydrocolloid Pectin Concentration 
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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. A. Lopes da Silva
    • 1
  • M. Anandha Rao
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of ChemistryUniversity of AveiroAveiroPortugal
  2. 2.Department of Food Science and Technology CornellUniversity GenevaNew York

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