This exam is present in the following Optional Group


The main educational objectives of the Course in Food Chemistry are to provide the student with knowledge regarding the chemical composition of foodstuffs, the influence of the different components on food properties and transformations related to production and conservation processes, and the most common diseases linked to the intake of specific nutrients / foods.
The knowledge and skills acquired during the Course will be usable by the professional figure in field of work thanks to the acquired critical and judgment skills useful to be able to suggest the use of specific foods for the nutritional intake and for the specific impact on health.
The expected learning outcomes, acquired during the course, will therefore allow the future professional figure to correlate and integrate the general aspects concerning the chemical composition of foods with the characteristics of specific food products, thus understanding the correlation between composition and quality and acquiring the ability to process the information on the label; to understand and predict transformations in food as a result of technological and conservation processes; to propose dietetic products for pathologies connected with the intake of specific food components This knowledge is the basis for operating in a production, control and analysis context and for the design of new products and processes.
The course takes place in an alternation of lectures useful to address the concepts of basic theory and classroom presentations prepared by students on current topics concerning food, suitable for stimulating their critical-applicative and communication skills.
The more specific objectives of the Food Chemistry course concern the acquisition by the student of transversal skills related to the detailed knowledge of: structure and function of macro and micronutrients (carbohydrates, lipids, proteins, vitamins), fiber and secondary metabolites; transformations of food components during storage and transformation processes; dietetic products for individuals in particular physiological conditions or with metabolic disorders.
At the end of the course the student will be able to effectively communicate what has been learned during the course thanks also to the exercise performed with the presentations in the classroom on current topics concerning foodstuffs. The student will be able to continue the study independently, thanks to the acquired skills and the concepts learned also regarding the methods of researching information on the food chemistry sector. During the course will be provided websites, bibliographic references and industry associations, possibly useful for developing collaborative relationships in the world of work. Based on the knowledge acquired, the graduate will have the necessary skills to be able to critically give indication in the field of foods related to health.




The course includes a general part and a special part.
In the general part, introductory concepts regarding the chemical composition of food and food safety are carried out. It is also highlighted the importance of a good diet for the well-being of persons and the existence of pathologies linked to the intake of specific nutrients.

In the special part some selected foods are treated highlighting their chemical composition, the health effects given by specific components and the analyses that are carried out to ensure authenticity and quality.

The articulation in the various topics is deeply interconnected, since the description of the foods in the special part will refer to the chemical composition, to the health properties or to the presence of problems related to the nutrients intake reported in the general part. However, an articulation of the various themes can be foreseen in the following number of hours (approximate values): point 1 = 30 hours; point 2 = 34
Compatibly with the needs of in-depth study presented by the students in the classroom, it is possible to foresee an articulation of the various themes in the following number of orientation hours: point 1 = 30 hours; point 2 = 34 hours
Foods and nutrients. Essential nutrients. Classifications of nutrients. Nutritional balance. Energy needs. Basal metabolism. Dietary guidelines. The recommended levels of intake of various nutrients for different age groups. Concept of alteration, adulteration and sophistication. Foodstuffs Labeling. Quality and authenticity. Genetically Modified Foods. Biological agriculture.
Carbohydrates. Classification and role. Structure and chemical-physical properties of the main monosaccharides, disaccharides and polysaccharides. Reactivity. Enzymes involved in the carbohydrate chemistry. Sweet taste substances: sweetening power and notes on the receptive theories. Natural and synthetic sweeteners. Dietary products for people with disorders in the carbohydrate metabolism (lactase deficiency, galactosemia, fructosemia).
The fiber. Definition. Soluble fiber and insoluble fiber.
Prebiotics and Probiotics. Functional properties of prebiotic and probiotic foods.
Lipids. General aspects, classes of compounds. Nomenclature, diffusion and physico-chemical properties of saturated, monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids. Maltodextrins. Biological and nutritional role of lipids. Modifications induced in lipids from oxygen, light, heat, biocatalysts, etc. Evaluation of the conservation status of lipids.
Protein. Natural amino acids: nomenclature and structural classification. Physical properties and main reactivity. Essential amino acids. Limiting amino acid. Protein quality. Protein classes in foods and protein sources. Kjeldahl method. Determination of the amino acid sequence. Maillard reaction. Dietetic products for celiac disease.
Vitamins: Structure, main food sources, stability, biological function, absorption and quantitative determination of hydro- and liposoluble vitamins.
Inorganic component Main food sources
Water as food. Chemical-physical characteristics of water and properties of foods containing water. Water classification in food (total, free and bound). Water activity. Influence of water activity on food stability. Water intended for human consumption. Drinking water. Mineral waters.
Food Additives. Classification and requirements, Legislative aspects. Stabilizers. Antimicrobials. Natural and synthetic emulsifiers ..
Analytical methods in Food Analysis. Conventional methods and advanced methodologies.

Cereal and Cereal products
Generality. Composition of the main cereals. World and Italian cereal production. Wheat. Wheat classes. T. aestivum (common wheat) and T.durum (durum wheat). Structure and composition of wheat kernels. Classification of flour: evaluation methods. Pasta and bread. Bakery products (overview). Rice. Rice species. Treatments made to obtain the commercial product.

Vegetable oils and edible fats
Olive oils. Composition and classification. Main analyses foreseen by the European regulation for the determination of quality and genuineness.
Seed oils, hydrogenated fats and margarine: generality, production and refining technologies. Effects of technological treatments. Composition of the main seed oils.

Milk and derivatives
Definition. Composition with respect to milk protein and lipid fractions. Defects and alterations. Effect of heat treatments. Regulatory requirements. Milk cream: types and methods of production. Butter. Scheme of burrification processes. Cheese: Definition, historical outline, classification, composition. Transformations in cheese ripening. Maturity coefficient.

Adopted texts

P.Cabras-A.Martelli: Chimica degli Alimenti (Piccin).
F.Evangelisti e P.Restani: Prodotti Dietetici: chimica, tecnologia e impiego (Piccin)

In order to help the student (in terms of method), the integrated distribution of the two recommended texts along the duration of the course could be hypothesized as follows:
Text 1 is useful for the general part and special
Text 2 is instead more useful for the part concerning dietetic products for diseases linked to disorders of the metabolism of some nutrients.

Exam reservation date start Exam reservation date end Exam date
01/01/2020 17/01/2020 20/01/2020
01/02/2020 14/02/2020 17/02/2020
10/02/2020 27/02/2020 04/03/2020
01/04/2020 18/04/2020 22/04/2020
20/04/2020 08/05/2020 13/05/2020
01/06/2020 19/06/2020 24/06/2020
01/07/2020 17/07/2020 21/07/2020
01/09/2020 21/09/2020 23/09/2020
20/09/2020 28/09/2020 02/10/2020
01/10/2020 10/10/2020 12/10/2020
01/11/2020 20/11/2020 25/11/2020
20/11/2020 10/12/2020 16/12/2020
01/01/2021 17/01/2021 20/01/2021
Course sheet
  • Academic year: 2019/2020
  • Curriculum: Curriculum unico
  • Year: Third year
  • Semester: First semester
  • SSD: CHIM/10
  • CFU: 8
  • Attività formative affini ed integrative
  • Ambito disciplinare: Attività formative affini o integrative
  • Lecture (Hours): 64
  • CFU: 8.00
  • SSD: CHIM/10