What is the chemical formula of ghee (Indian butter)? Also, name the elements present and state the number of their atoms.
The composition of ghee varies depending on the animal whose milk has been used. Ghee is a complex lipid of glycerides (majorly triglycerides), free fatty acids, phospholipids, sterols, sterol esters, fat soluble vitamins, carbonyls, hydrocarbons and carotenoids (only in ghee derived from cow milk).
Milk fat contains at least 500 fatty acids and fatty acid derivatives with 4 – 20 or more carbon atoms in their chain. The fatty acid may saturated or unsaturated and usually contains an even number of carbon atoms. Following table shows detailed composition of buffalo milk and cow milk fatty acid composition:
The vitamin A content ranges from 315 to 375 international units per 100 grams. The saturated fatty acid profile is 53.9 to 66.8 percent, the unsaturated fatty acid profile is 22.8 to 38.0 and the other fatty acids profile is 3.5 to 10.4*. Cholesterol amounts ranges from 252 to 284 mg/100 grams.
*Vaccenic acid (2.18%) and conjugated linoleic acid (0.77% in buffalo and 1% in cow ghee) are the other main ruminant trans fatty acids.
- http://ecoursesonline.iasri.res.in/mod/page/view.php?id=5793 (table sources)
- Parmar, Nirav & Mehta, Bhavbhuti & Aparnathi, Kishorkumar. (2018). Composition of ghee prepared from camel, cow and buffalo milk. Journal of Camel Practice and Research. 25. 321. 10.5958/2277-8934.2018.00046.2.
- Composition of ghee (Samn Barri's) from cow's and sheep's milk AbdulrhmanAl-Khalifah, Hassan Al-Kahtani, Food Chemistry Volume 46, Issue 4, 1993, Pages 373-375, DOI: 10.1016/0308-8146(93)90007-3