The Nutritional Quality of Smoked Foods
Any type of processing usually has an impact on certain aspects of the nutritional components of food. One should remember that in most cases the smoking of a protein-based food is accompanied by some degree of heat treatment, and it may be difficult to qualitate and quantitate compositional changes associated with proteins that are specifically due to the influence of smoke and its components. From a nutritional standpoint, most smoked foods can be considered to be high in protein and thus total protein content is not usually a primary matter of concern. Aside from individual amino acid composition, another major nutritional issue is how digestible is the protein associated with smoked foods. Most researchers are in general agreement that the smoking of foods apparently improves protein digestibility. Several groups have reported that the use of liquid smoke gives better protein digestibility results than traditional smoke.