fatty acid

Definitions

General Science

  • noun an acid found in plants and animals that consists of a straight chain of carbon atoms ending in a carboxyl group which is an important substance in the body

Food

  • A long-chain hydrocarbon with an acid group at one end. This combines with an alcohol such as glycerine by the esterification reaction to form natural fats and oils, or with a metal such as sodium to form a soap. They are also esterified with a variety of higher alcohols for use in convenience foods. Generally produced from natural fats and oils, and they are the initial breakdown product of fats in the body.

Medical

  • noun an organic acid belonging to a group that occurs naturally as fats, oils and waxes.
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