Increasing the antioxidant activity, total phenolic and flavonoid contents by optimizing the germination conditions of amaranth seeds

Plant Foods Hum Nutr. 2014 Sep;69(3):196-202. doi: 10.1007/s11130-014-0430-0.


The aim of this study was to optimize the germination conditions of amaranth seeds that would maximize the antioxidant activity (AoxA), total phenolic (TPC), and flavonoid (TFC) contents. To optimize the germination bioprocess, response surface methodology was applied over three response variables (AoxA, TPC, TFC). A central composite rotable experimental design with two factors [germination temperature (GT), 20-45 ºC; germination time (Gt), 14-120 h] in five levels was used; 13 treatments were generated. The amaranth seeds were soaked in distilled water (25 °C/6 h) before germination. The sprouts from each treatment were dried (50 °C/8 h), cooled, and ground to obtain germinated amaranth flours (GAF). The best combination of germination bioprocess variables for producing optimized GAF with the highest AoxA [21.56 mmol trolox equivalent (TE)/100 g sample, dw], TPC [247.63 mg gallic acid equivalent (GAE)/100 g sample, dw], and TFC [81.39 mg catechin equivalent (CAE)/100 g sample, dw] was GT = 30 ºC/Gt = 78 h. The germination bioprocess increased AoxA, TPC, and TFC in 300-470, 829, and 213%, respectively. The germination is an effective strategy to increase the TPC and TFC of amaranth seeds for enhancing functionality with improved antioxidant activity.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Amaranthus / chemistry*
  • Antioxidants / chemistry*
  • Flavonoids / chemistry*
  • Flour / analysis
  • Food Handling
  • Gallic Acid / chemistry
  • Germination*
  • Phenols / chemistry*
  • Seeds / chemistry*


  • Antioxidants
  • Flavonoids
  • Phenols
  • Gallic Acid