|Elfi (right) took a photo with the product and the student's guidance. (Photo: Aan / PR)|
HIGHLY number of sufferers of mainutritions to infants is continually increasing. Based on the data compiled by Health Ministry of Republic of Indonesia Data and Information Center (PDI) in 2015, there was 25% infants to toddlers in Indonesia experienced stunting and other health problems due to low nutritional quality.
Moreover, PDI also showed 30% infants in Indonesia that experienced Low Calorie Protein (KKP). “These infants have problems during the growth period, one of them is KKP,” said Elfi Anis Saati, the food and science technology lecture (ITP) of University of Muhammadiyah Malang (UMM) when was interviewed on Thursday (22/11) related to her new product launch.
From this situation, Elfi innovated the high-protein analog rice. She experimented on analog rice made from tapioca flour, soy flour, green and red spinach. Elfi explained that rice analogs she made is rich in protein produced from beans. She chose soybeans which easily to find..
“This analog rice contains of high-protein soy flour which makes this rice not only contains carbohydrates,” said Elfi. According to the lecturer who also actively conducts a research in scope of pigment, this rice analog labelled Elviza has another advantage namely high antioxidant.
Antioxidant, Elfi explained, is compounds which able to enhance immune system in human body. It is very beneficial for toddlers in the growth period. “The pigment in this researched has been proven to have very high-antioxidants,” she added.
Meanwhile, in the analog rice, Elfi chose pigments that contained in vegetables. The vegetables was chosen because of many infants tend to consume less vegetables. Furthermore, Elfi admitted that this analog rice not only contains carbohidrates but also other health ingredients contained by the vegetables. “I chose spinach as the additional ingredients to utilize the pigments contained in the spinach,” she explained.
Not only innovating to the rice analog, previously Elfi had experimented with the antioxidants drink which utilizes pigments from roses. Anthocyanins from roses are known to prevent kidney disease and liver. The results of the research have been published in international journals and patented.
Intending to provide healthy food for people and reduce the use of hazardous non-food coloring, such as Rhodamin, Amaranth, and Pauncou, Elfi conducted a downstream antioxidant drink product labelled Elvira as well.
Besides, Elfi is now developing a natural coloring product with various colors isolated from natural ingredients of Indonesia. “My natural coloring product is developed to fulfill the needs of export batik entrepreneurs from Medan who has Batik businesses in Malang,” said Elfi.
Elfi said, pigments made from natural ingredients in Indonesia have the high potential to be utilized as a food product, cosmetics, herbal medicines, crafts, batik, and even source of electricity. (ard)