Phytosterols: applications and recovery methods.
Sommaire de l'article
Phytosterols, or plant sterols, are compounds that occur naturally and bear close structural resemblance to cholesterol, but have different side-chain configurations. Phytosterols are relevant in pharmaceuticals (production of therapeutic steroids), nutrition (anti-cholesterol additives in functional foods, anti-cancer properties), and cosmetics (creams, lipstick). Phytosterols can be obtained from vegetable oils or from industrial wastes, which gives an added value to the latter. Considerable efforts have been recently dedicated to the development of efficient processes for phytosterol isolation from natural sources. The present work aims to summarize information on the applications of phytosterols and to review recent approaches, mainly from the industry, for the large-scale recovery of phytosterols.