Protein beverage and method of making the same

An improved protein beverage/drink composition that might offer a relatively large protein content, which range from about 0.01percent by weight to about 15 percent by weight, while employing a carbonation concentration between approximately 0.1 quantities of carbonation (per volume of liquid drink alternative or liquid drink suspension) to roughly 6 volumes of carbonation. Preferably the protein is a protein, such preferably as whey protein, or others. The protein beverage may contain juice and/or an additive which offers energy creation enhancement. The protein beverage may be heat treated to inactivate pathogenic microbes in the existence of the carbonation which may be used to provide flavor and mouth feel to the drink. Typically, the treatment for pathogenic microbe inactivation is carried out in the individual package utilized for storage and handling of the protein drink.


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1. Field of the Invention

The present invention pertains to a protein beverage, and to methods for making the beverage.

2. Brief Description of the Background Art

This section describes background subject matter linked to the disclosed embodiments of the current invention. There’s not any intention, either express or implied, that the background art dealt with in this section lawfully constitutes prior art.Moreover, this brief description is not meant to fully describe the subject matter of the art, the reader is encouraged to thoroughly analyze the background to better understand what’s disclosed.

Carbonated dairy products have been highly sought after, and many different kinds of goods have been developed. Among the more critical hurdles to be overcome is the creation of a highly carbonated drink where, for example, the dissolvedcarbon dioxide gas at room temperature is at least half the amount of the liquid product it is dissolved in without fueling parting outside or precipitation of this dairy protein in the liquid during manufacture and handling, transport and storage.In addition to manufacturability and shelf life, the taste of previous carbonated dairy goods may generally have been negatively affected by the sort of proteins within combination with the carbonation.

Milk includes two big protein fractions, casein, which might provide about 80 percent by weight of the total protein, and whey protein, which might provide about 20% by weight of the total protein. The whey protein percentage is that the protein fraction whichmay remain soluble once the casein fraction is coagulated (such, for instance, as by enzyme or acid) and separated as cheese curd. Whey protein may consist of several protein fractions, including, for instance, .beta. -lactoglobulin,(.alpha. -lactoglobulin, Lactalbumin, immunoglobulins (such as IgG1, IgG2, IgA, and IgM, for example), lactoferrin, glycomacropeptides, and lactoperoxidase.

In contrast to casein and soy, whey proteins may be highly soluble. Whey proteins may be the least soluble at typically approximately pH 4.5 to approximately pH 5.5, which is the isoelectic stage (the pH where the net electrical charge is zero) to get wheyprotein. In large acid systems using a pH less than about 3.5, such as in several fruit-flavored beverages, the acid solubility of whey proteins may be especially important; however, protein precipitation may occur during the mixing period once the pH of thewhey protein, which typically has a pH of about 6 to about 1, alterations through the zone of isoelectric points. Protein solubility may be affected by heat, and so the elevated temperatures experienced during pasteurization can also negativelyaffect solubility and fluidity leading to protein precipitation or gelation.

Whey protein may have a greater biological value and/or protein digestibility corrected amino acid score (PDCAAS) than casein. The physical properties of whey proteins in the digestive tract may be quite different from the properties of casein.Caseins can form curds within the gut, which curds can be slow to exit from the gut and which curds may boost their hydrolysis prior to entering the small intestine. Alternatively, whey proteins can reach the jejunum almost immediately;however their hydrolysis within the gut may be slower than that of caseins, therefore their absorption and digestion may occur within a larger length of the gut.

The protein efficiency ratio (PER) of a protein source measures the weight advantage of young creatures per g of protein consumed within a particular time period. Any protein having a PER of 2.5 is considered good quality. Whey protein is thought of as anutritionally outstanding protein, as it’s a PER of 3.2. Casein has a PER of 2.5, although many commonly used proteins have a PER of less than 2.5, for example soy protein (PER 2.2), corn protein (PER 2.2), peanut protein (PER 1.8), and wheat gluten (PER 0.8). The greater PER of whey protein could be due in part to the high level of sulfur-containing amino acids in whey protein. Such higher level may contribute to whey protein’s capacity to enhance immune-function and antioxidant status.

Whey protein is also a rich source of branched chain amino acids (BCAAs), containing the greatest known levels of any natural food supply. BCAAs are important for athletes, because, unlike the other essential amino acidsthey are metabolized directlyinto muscle tissue and are the first amino acids used during times of exercise and resistance training. Leucine could be important for athletes as it might play an integral role in muscle protein synthesis and lean muscle support and growth. Research suggeststhat individuals who exercise benefit from diets high in leucine and might have more lean muscle tissue and less body fat than individuals whose diet contains lower levels of leucine. Whey protein isolate might have approximately 45% by weight more leucinethan soy protein isolate.

Whey protein is available in a number of forms, together with preparations which may vary from about 1 percent to about 99% whey protein. Whey protein preparations might be in an aqueous form made by the removal of casein, but often takes several different forms,including, for instance, but not by way of limitation, a whey protein extract, whey protein concentrate, whey protein isolate, or whey protein hydrolysate.

Whey protein concentrate may be prepared by removing sufficient non-protein components from whey by membrane filtration, so the final dry product may be selected to include whey protein at a given concentration that might range fromabout 25% by weight to approximately 89.9% by weight protein.

Whey protein isolate could be acquired by eliminating sufficient non-protein constituents from whey by membrane filtration or ion exchange absorption, so that the final dry product may contain about 90 percent by weight or more whey protein, and little,if any, fat, cholesterol, or carbohydrates (e.g., flaxseed ). Prior to concentration and spray drying, aqueous whey protein isolate may have a whey protein concentration of about 1% by weight to about 35% by weight, and may also be essentially free offat, cholesterol, and carbohydrates.

Whey protein hydrolysate is a whey protein groundwork which may have been subjected to enzymatic digestion using a protease enzyme or limited acid hydrolysis, or a suitable mechanical fracture of peptide bonds to form smaller peptides andpolypeptideshydrolysis to form smaller peptides and polypeptides. The protein concentration of the whey protein hydrolysate may be determined by the starting material. For example, a whey protein hydrolysate prepared in an 80% by weight whey proteinconcentrate may have an 80% by weight protein concentration, and a whey protein hydrolysate prepared from a 90% by weight whey protein isolate may have a 90% by weight protein concentration, Not all hydrolyzed whey proteins may behave equally in a foodformulation, and thus one hydrolyzed whey protein may not be interchangeable with another. The functional and biological properties of whey protein hydrolysates may change depending upon factors, such as degree of hydrolysis and which protease enzyme isused for hydrolysis.

Although hydrolysis of whey protein can cause greater solubility, it may also negatively impact the taste. Whey protein typically has a refreshing, neutral taste that might allow it to be included in other foods without negatively impacting thetaste. However, hydrolysis of whey protein may result in a really bitter taste, which may impose a practical limit on the total amount of whey protein hydrolysate that can be utilized in a food item. Therefore, a high protein beverage created with powdered proteinhydrolysate may require a large amount of sweeteners, or bitter freezing agents to overcome the bitter taste. However, such a large quantity of sweetener may not be desirable to many customers or the bitter aftertaste of this large protein beverage can bedifficult or impossible to mask to a satisfactory scope for some applications.

Whey protein includes all the essential amino acids, and so, is a top quality, complete source of nourishment, where complete means that whey protein contains all the essential amino acids for the growth of body tissues. Since whey proteinis available in types containing little fat and carbs, it might be a particularly valuable source of nutrition for athletes and also for individuals with special health needs (e.g., lactose intolerant individuals), and might be a valuable component of adiet program. Further, since whey protein might contain biologically active fats such as the immunoglobulins, lactoperoxidase, and lactoferrin, whey protein may provide advantages over other protein sources such as soy protein.

In a bid to increase the availability and use of whey protein, attempts are made to include whey protein beverages among now available dairy protein drinks. In particular, attempts are made to include whey protein as a proteinsource in carbonated beverages. Sad to say, the carbonation procedure may generally result in destabilization of whey protein, resulting in foaming and/or gelling problems under specific conditions. Because of this, the amount of whey protein that has beenincluded in carbonated beverages has been severely restricted.


An article by V. H. Holsinger in Adv. Exp.

Med. Biol. 1978; 105:735-47, titled:”Fortification of soft drinks with protein from cottage cheese “, clarifies preparation of cottage cheese whey protein concentrates which have thesolubility, equilibrium, and flavor to make them appropriate for fortification of soft drinks and related products. Carbonated beverages ready with conventional drink ingredients and containing up to 1 percent by weight of the total drink of additional wheyprotein are believed to have maintained clarity, color, and flavor during 203 times of storage at room temperature. Clarity of 1 percent protein solutions in a pH of 2-3.4 is supposedly unimpaired by heating for 6 hours at 80 degrees (without specifying .degree.C. or .degree. F.), but some structural change was stated to have occurred, since a mean of 37 percent of the protein is said to have precipitated on altering the pH to 4.7.

Clouding or creaming agents employed for still or carbonated beverages, especially acid types are described in U.S. Pat. No. 4,790,998, issued to Marsha Schwartz on Dec.. 13, 1988, and entitled:”Beverage Cloud Based On A Whey Protein-StabilizedLipid”. The composition of matter described includes a nitric protein-stabilized lipid emulsified in an acidic aqueous solution. The important features of the patented whey protein-stabilized lipid are said to comprise the balancing of the lipid system,the use of whey protein in pH levels of less than 4.5, and heating and homogenizing the solution to attain acid emulsification stability. All ingredients are said to be natural, i.e., unmodified in the form typically found in nature.

A Russian subjective by Kudryavtseva et al., in Molochnaya Promyshlennost 1981; 5: 45-46, using an English translated title of:”Carbonated Protein drink”, vaguely refers to a method for the manufacture of a carbonated beverage between thefollowing major measures: purification of tvorog whey containing less than 1.5% protein and 0.2percent fat and using a titratable acidity of less than 75 degrees Thorner, holding for as much as a day at 6-8. degree. C., heating at 90-95. degree. C. and holding for 15minutes, cooling to 60. degree. C., centrifugingas well as unnamed components, cooling system to 4-6. degree. C. and injection of CO.sub.2. The Abstract then suggests the item could be brewed in narrow-neck bottles and shut using crown molding closures.Subsequent storage is in less than 8. degree. C.

Tvorog is a Russian soft farmer’s cheese. Tvorog is commonly made by allowing raw milk to sour naturally. However, it may also be made by curdling raw milk from the addition of a rookie bacterial culture or an acid. Once curdled, the tvorogmay be pumped to separate the tvorog curds in the tvorog whey, which typically contains whey protein, fat and lactose.


U.S. Pat.

No. 4,804,552 to Ahmed et al., issued Feb.. 14, 1989, and entitled:”Carbonated Artificial Dairy Product and Method of Production Thereof” refers to a method of carbonating a liquid dairy product to a degree of”at ” 1.5 volumes ofcarbon dioxide dissolved in 10 volume of liquid dairy product, while not destabilizing the liquid dairy product. The liquid dairy product is heated to a temperature of at least 160. degree. F. for a time not in excess of 30 minutes, followed closely by coolingto a fever of less than about 50. degree. F. The chilled liquid is subsequently subjected to pressurized carbon dioxide to carbonate the dairy product to provide flavor and mouth feel. The product is then packed in closed containers competent ofsubstantially keeping the degree of carbonation. The carbonated dairy product is reported to be buffered to a pH of at least 4.0 while still being highly carbonated although not destabilized.


U.S. Pat.

No. 6,403,129, to Clark et al., issued Jun.. 11, 2002, and entitled:”Carbonated Fortified Milk-Based Beverage And Method Of Making Carbonated Fortified Milk-Based Beverage For The Supplementation Of Critical Nutrients In The HumanDiet”, discloses milk or non-dairy established fortified carbonated beverage alternatives that supply nutrients in the human diet. The beverage explained is thought to possess carbonation to enhance flavor, improve body and mouth-feel and help in the stabilization ofmilk protein such as Lactalbumnin and Casein.


U.S. Pat.

No. 7,041,327 B2, to Hotchkiss et al., issued May 9, 2006, and entitled”Carbon Dioxide as an Aid in Pasteurization”, describes methods to inhibit or decrease the growth of bacteria and other germs in a liquid with the addition of carbondioxide to the liquid, and thermally inactivating the bacteria and other germs. The process is said to be applicable to a vast array of fluids, liquids, semi-solids and solids. Prior to or simultaneously with thermal inactivation carbon dioxide(CO.sub.2) is added to this item by sparging or bubbling, preferably to get levels of about 400-2000 ppm. At this level of CO.sub.2, the amount of parasitic death which happens during heating in a standard pasteurization (HTST) process is said to beincreased by 10% to 90% over thermal inactivation carried out without the inclusion of CO.sub.2 ahead of the thermal inactivation measure. After completion of this thermal inactivation process, the free CO.sub.2 has been supposedly eliminated.


U.S. Pat.

No. 6,761,920 into Jeffrey Kaplan, issued Jul.. 13, 2004, and entitled:”Process For Making Shelf-Stable Carbonated Milk Beverage”, clarifies an aerated or carbonated milk merchandise drink made with a method including pre-heating,pressurized ultra-heat healing, subsequent carbonation using a gas or gases under pressure, and packaging into a container. The method of creating the shelf-stable carbonated milk merchandise includes injecting under stress carbon dioxide gas or amixture of gases into the milk merchandise at low temperature of less than 10 degrees centigrade and higher pressure of 50 kPa to 200 kPa. In a typical procedure, the milk product is pre-heat treated at a temperature of 80. degree. C. into 138. degree. C.,followed by ultra-heat therapy from roughly 138. degree. C. to approximately 150. degree. C. in a holding tank, where it is held at a pressure of 700 kPa or an appropriate pressure. The carbonation may be achieved by direct identification of sterilized, purifiedcarbon dioxide gas in a holding receptacle, or might be injected in line. Preferably the carbonation process is carried out at two. degree. C.. +-.14. degree. C. Subsequently the carbonated liquid is transferred into a holding tank, where it is maintained at apressure of 450 kPa and a temperature of two. degree. C. to 6. degree. C.


In the U.S. Pat.

No. 6,761,920, it’s stated that if, for some reason, the amount of carbonation of this preheated ultra heat treated milk merchandise is insufficient, the product may be diverted to be reprocessed through the carbonater in a returnloop into a holding tank to become re-pasteurized to be in the specification. Following carbonation, the product is conveyed to a packaging station for packaging to sterile containers. The pH of this product is reportedly preferentially preserved at 4.0 to5.7 during packaging operations, depending on the product. After packaging the milk product into individual containers, it’s stated that the milk may be farther sterilized by non-toxic radiation or pasteurizationnonetheless, no enabling description of howthis would be performed is supplied.


U.S. Pat.

Nos. 6,835,402 B1 and 6,866,877 B2 to Clark et al., issued Dec.. 28, 2004 and Mar.. 15, 2005, entitled, respectively:”Carbonated Fortified Milk-Based Beverage and Method for Suppressing Bacterial Formation from the Beverage” and”Carbonated Fortified Milk-Based Beverage And Method For Suppressing Bacterial Growth In The Beverage”, clarifies dairy or non-dairy established fortified carbonated beverage solutions which are believed to supply vital nutrients in the diet. In additionto describing the composition of a beverage, the patent discloses a way of using carbonization to decrease bacterial counts and decrease degradation of vital nutrients in milk-based drinks with or without pasteurization. In one embodiment,CO.sub.2 is added pre-pasteurization to remove or effectively lessen the development of bacterial colonies in the beverage and decrease degradation of nourishment if UHT pasteurization is used. In case CO.sub.2 is added pre-pasteurization, it’s said that CO.sub.2has to be reintroduced, since pasteurization disseminates many CO.sub.2 present. This is done by in-line addition of CO.sub.2 after the beverage’s fever is brought down from approximately 185. degree. F.-215. degree. F. to about 40. degree. F. It is saidthat the CO.sub.2 concentration in the last product is preferably from about 500 ppm to approximately 3,000 ppm. 1,000 ppm is reportedly roughly 0.5 volumes of carbonation per quantity of liquid beverage option, so that the last product contains approximately 0.25volumes to approximately 1.5 volumes of carbon dioxide per quantity of liquid beverage solution.

One type of carbonated dairy product for which there is increasing need is a carbonated dairy product that offers both high juice and high protein content. The issue of protein precipitation and separation out during production,shipping, and storage, discussed above to get a highly carbonated high protein beverage, may be compounded when the drink includes another element, such as juice. Methods are known in the art for trying to overcome the precipitation of proteinfrom juice beverages. However, the majority of these procedures involve the use of stabilizers.

Fiber or other carbohydrates may be inserted as a protein stabilizing agent, including pectin, cellulose gum, xanthan gum, gum arabic, carageenan, guar gum, dextrin, dextrose monohydrate, and polydextrose. While stabilizers can help prevent proteinprecipitation, they could have the drawback of increasing the viscosity of this drink due to cross-linking with naturally existing calcium cations. This increased viscosity could be undesirable as it may result in a beverage having inferior organolepticproperties for some applications. The selection of amount of stabilizer which may be used may be rather narrow. By way of instance, in a pectin concentration of below 0.06% by weight, sedimentation may be a substantial problem, whereas over it, theviscosity of this beverage may be undesirably high. The ideal amount of stabilizer must be experimentally determined for each beverage formula, and may need to be corrected from 1 batch to the next. Thus, a beverage formula that does not consist of aprotein stabilizer but generates a beverage with great protein solubility is desirable for all applications.


U.K. Patent GB 2,335,134 to Burke, Printed Jun..

19, 2002, entitled:”A drink”, discloses a carbonated drink containing: from 5 to 20 weight % of fruit juice; carbohydrate in a period of 2 to 6 grams per 100 milliliter; and asoluble whey protein hydrolysate in a period of 5 to 20 grams per liter; the drink comprising carbon dioxide in an amount of 4 to 6 grams per liter and having a pH of less than 3.5. The pH is adjusted with citric acid and malic acid.Protein precipitation is allegedly prevented by adjusting the quantity and character of the carbohydrate utilized. The carbohydrate source is stated to be preferably dextrose monohydrate.


U.S. Pat.

No. 7,101,585 B2, to Shen et al., issued Sep. 5, 2006, entitled:”Ultra High Pressure Homogenization Procedure for Creating a Stable Protein According Acid Beverage” describes a procedure for preparing a stable suspension of an acid beverage,wherein a hydrated protein stabilizing agent (A) and a flavoring material (B) are combined as a preblend (I) and combined with a slurry of a homogenized protein material (C) or a homogenized preblend (II) of a hydrated protein stabilizing agent(A) along with a slurry of a protein material (C) to produce a mix and pasteurizing and homogenizing the mix. The homogenization of the mix is completed in two stages comprising a higher pressure period of from 8000-30,000 pounds per square inch and a lowpressure stage of from 300-1,000 pounds per square inch. The acid beverage composition has a pH of from 3.0 to 4.5. This beverage contains juice, but isn’t carbonated. Pectin is added as a stabilizer.

Published Patent Application US 2003/0099753 A1 of Yang, released May 29, 2003, clarifies a fruit juice established drink composition containing a protein selected from the group consisting of whey protein isolate and a combination of whey proteinisolate and whey protein hydrolysate; a carbohydrate selected from the group consisting of sucrose, fructose, higher fructose corn syrup 42 (HFCS 42), HFCS 55, combination of sucrose, fructose, HFCS 42, and HFCS 55, and combinations of maltodextrin withanother carbohydrate selected from the group consisting of sucrose, fructose, HFCS 42, and HFCS 55; a raw acid selected from the group consisting of citric acid, phosphoric acid, combinations of uric acid and lactic acid, and combinations ofmalic acid with another raw acid selected from the group consisting of citric acid and lactic acid; a fruit juice or combinations of fruit juices; various vitamins and minerals; and optional fibers and tastes and a procedure for making suchcomposition. The composition containing the above ingredients are claimed to be apparent, have a pH of about 4.0 or less, and have a viscosity of less than about 40 centipoises. Protein stabilizing agents are used, for example pectin.

As is shown above, there are numerous different factors that will need to be, or at least may be, considered in development of a carbonated juice and protein beverage. At least among the references seem to educate away from each other inregards to, inter alia( 1) the concentrations of protein that can be utilised in an carbonated protein beverage, 2) the amount of carbonation that can be used (and enable a shelf-stable drink ), and 3) the pH at which different protein-containingcarbonated drinks are shelf-stable.

There’s also significant lack of detail from the processing system steps in at least some of the foregoing references described, to the extent that one of skill in the art might not be enabled to produce a desired carbonated protein and juicedrink after experimentation, in view of the description. Inactivation of germs after carbonation of this beverage might be a problem for at least some applications, requiring following”recarbonation” to be certain that the beverage has the proper tasteand mouth feel.

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