Large amplitude oscillatory shear (LAOS) for nonlinear rheological behavior of heterogeneous emulsion gels made from natural supramolecular gelators

Qing Li, Mengyue Xu, Jing Xie, Enyi Su, Zhili Wan*, L.M.C. Sagis, Xiaoquan Yang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


The linear and nonlinear rheological behaviors of heterogeneous emulsions gels made from natural glycyrrhizic acid (GA) nanofibrils and sitosterol-oryzanol mixtures (sterols) were investigated using small amplitude oscillatory shear (SAOS) and large amplitude oscillatory shear (LAOS). The nonlinear rheological response was qualitatively analyzed using normalized Lissajous-Bowditch curves. The microstructure of the emulsion gels strongly depended on the concentration of sterols in the oil phase, and showed a percolated segregated network at 10–20 wt% sterols due to the partial coalescence of droplets, and a jamming transition without coalescence at higher sterols concentration of 30 wt%. The microstructure differences led to different linear and nonlinear viscoelastic behaviors of these emulsion gels. SAOS tests showed that the oil phase structuring by the sterols significantly enhance the viscoelasticity of GA nanofibril emulsion gels, and the percolating emulsion gels exhibited higher elasticity than the jammed emulsion gel, as evidenced by a lower damping factor and frequency power-law exponent. The data of crossover strain, phase angle, and the normalized Lissajous-Bowditch curves from LAOS tests further revealed that compared to the samples in a jammed state or without oil phase structuring, the emulsion gels with a percolating segregated network showed higher structural elasticity and thus were more resistant to large deformations, probably due to the slow relaxation of rigid, hydrodynamically interacting clusters of partially coalesced droplets. These findings could potentially aid in the design of novel emulsion gels, based on all-natural and sustainable building blocks, with specific textural and functional properties for foods, cosmetics, and pharmaceutical applications.
Original languageEnglish
Article number110076
Number of pages10
JournalFood Research International
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2021


  • Heterogeneous emulsion gels
  • glycyrrhizic acid
  • Sitosterol-oryzanol mixtures
  • large amplitude oscillatory shear (LAOS)
  • Lissajous-Bowditch curves


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