Journal of Food Science and Technology

, Volume 55, Issue 6, pp 1973–1981 | Cite as

Effects of thermal and non-thermal processing of cruciferous vegetables on glucosinolates and its derived forms

  • Tomás Lafarga
  • Gloria Bobo
  • Inmaculada Viñas
  • Cyrelys Collazo
  • Ingrid Aguiló-Aguayo
Review Article


Brassica vegetables, which include broccoli, kale, cauliflower, and Brussel sprouts, are known for their high glucosinolate content. Glucosinolates and their derived forms namely isothiocyanates are of special interest in the pharmaceutical and food industries due to their antimicrobial, neuroprotective, and anticarcinogenic properties. These compounds are water soluble and heat-sensitive and have been proved to be heavily lost during thermal processing. In addition, previous studies suggested that novel non-thermal technologies such as high pressure processing, pulsed electric fields, or ultraviolet irradiation can affect the glucosinolate content of cruciferous vegetables. The objective of this paper was to review current knowledge about the effects of both thermal and non-thermal processing technologies on the content of glucosinolates and their derived forms in brassica vegetables. This paper also highlights the importance of the incorporation of brassica vegetables into our diet for their health-promoting properties beyond their anticarcinogenic activities.


Glucosinolates Crucifers Thermal processing Novel technologies Non-thermal processing Brassica 



High pressure processing




Intense pulsed light


Pulsed electric field



This work was supported by the CERCA Programme and the Secretaria d’Universitats i Recerca del Departament d’Economia i Coneixement de la Generalitat de Catalunya (FI-DGR-2015-0004). T. Lafarga is in receipt of a Juan de la Cierva contract awarded by the Spanish Ministry of Economy, Industry, and Competitiveness (FJCI-2016-29541). I. Aguiló-Aguayo thanks the National Programme for the Promotion of Talent and its Employability of the Spanish Ministry of Economy, Industry and Competitiveness and to the European Social Fund for the Postdoctoral Senior Grant Ramon y Cajal (RYC-2016-19949).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Association of Food Scientists & Technologists (India) 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Tomás Lafarga
    • 1
  • Gloria Bobo
    • 1
  • Inmaculada Viñas
    • 2
  • Cyrelys Collazo
    • 1
  • Ingrid Aguiló-Aguayo
    • 1
  1. 1.Institute of Agrifood Research and Technology (IRTA), XaRTA-Postharvest, Parc Científic i Tecnològic Agroalimentari de LleidaLleidaSpain
  2. 2.Food Technology DepartmentUniversity of Lleida, XaRTA-Postharvest, Agrotecnio CenterLleidaSpain

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