Authors: Adadi P., Barakova N.V., Krivoshapkina E.F.
Carotenoids are the most powerful nutrients (medicine) on earth due to their potent antioxidant properties. The ability of these tetraterpenoids in obviating human chronic ailments like cancer, cardiovascular disease, osteoporosis, and diabetes has drawn public attention toward these novel compounds. Conventionally, carotenoids have been extracted from plant materials and agro-industrial byproduct using different solvents, but these procedures result in contaminating the target compound (carotenoids) with extraction solvents. Furthermore, some utilized solvents are not safe and hence are harmful to the environment. This has attracted criticism from consumers, ecologists, environmentalists, and public health workers. However, there is clear consumer preference for carotenoids from natural origin without traces of extracting solvent. Therefore, this review seeks to discuss methods for higher recovery of pure carotenoids without contamination from a solvent. Methods such as enzyme-based extraction, supercritical fluid extraction, microwave-assisted extraction, Soxhlet extraction, ultrasonic extraction, and postextraction treatment (saponification) are discussed. Merits and demerits of these methods along with health concerns during intake of carotenoids were also considered.