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Guar Gum

Guar Gum also known as guaran is a natural polymer derived from the ground guar bean (endosperm of Cyamopsis Tetragonolobus), a plant of the Leguminosae family.

Manufacturing Process
The Guar Seed is broken to get 2 halves referred to as Guar splits. Dehusking of the splits is achieved through heating, grinding, polishing and sieving. The endosperm is separated from the germ through sieving and is then hydrated, pulverised and dried to make a powder.


Chemically, guar gum is a polysaccharide composed of the sugars galactose and mannose. The backbone is a linear chain of β 1,4-linked mannose residues to which galactose residues are 1,6-linked at every second mannose, forming short side-branches.


Solubility and viscosity
Guar gum is more soluble than locust bean gum and is a better emulsifier as it has more galactose branch points. Unlike locust bean gum, it is not self-gelling.[4] However, either borax or calcium can cross-link guar gum, causing it to gel. In water it is nonionic and hydrocolloidal. It is not affected by ionic strength or pH, but will degrade at pH extremes at temperature (e.g. pH 3 at 50C). It remains stable in solution over pH range 5-7. Strong acids cause hydrolysis and loss of viscosity, and alkalies in strong concentration also tend to reduce viscosity. It is insoluble in most hydrocarbon solvents.

Guar gum shows high low-shear viscosity but is strongly shear-thinning. It is very thixotropic above concentration 1%, but below 0.3% the thixotropy is slight. It has much greater low-shear viscosity than that of locust bean gum, and also generally greater than that of other hydrocolloids. Guar gum shows viscosity synergy with xanthan gum. Guar gum and micellar casein mixtures can be slightly thixotropic if a biphase system forms.

Thickening
Guar gum is economical because it has almost 8 times the water-thickening potency of cornstarch - only a very small quantity is needed for producing sufficient viscosity. Thus it can be used in various multi-phase formulations: as an emulsifier because it helps to prevent oil droplets from coalescing, and/or as a stabilizer because it helps to prevent solid particles from settling.


Ice-crystal growth
Guar gum retards ice crystal growth non-specifically by slowing mass transfer across the solid/liquid interface. It shows good stability during freeze-thaw cycles.



 

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