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householdhacker - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AclA-7YntvE&feature=share&list=SPEE3089D7E78B9A63
10 Life Hacks Every College Student Should Know:
1 how to keep bananas fresh longer
2 Learn how to make coffee without a coffee maker
3 A binder clip keeps beverages neatly stacked in a tiny mini-fridge.
4 Save space in your tiny closet by hanging multiple garments with soda pop tabs.
5 If you're a heavy sleeper, putting your phone into a glass will amplify the sound.
6 Wrap a warm beer in a damp paper towel and place in the fridge for 15 minutes
7 How to Turn a Hoodie Into a Laptop Bag: 8 Steps
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Welcome to Your Freshman Year of College
We're looking specifically at enzymatic browning and the effect of ethylene production here. If you want to dig much deeper, there's a ton of academic research on bananas available online.
"Relationship between browning and the activities of polyphenol oxidase and phenylalanine ammonia lyase in banana peel during low temperature storage" anyone?
(Postharvest Biology and Technology - PDF link)
When fruits or vegetables are peeled or cut, enzymes contained in the plant cells are released. In the presence of oxygen from the air, the enzyme phenolase catalyses one step in the biochemical conversion of plant phenolic compounds to form brown pigments known as melanins. This reaction, called enzymatic browning, occurs readily at warm temperatures when the pH is between 5.0 and 7.0.
(Australian Institute of Food Science and Technology - PDF link.)
Ethylene promotes maturation and abscission of fruits. This has been known since early last century. Since 1934, it is known that plants themselves can produce ethylene. Many climacteric fruits such as apple, banana and tomato show a strong increase in ethylene levels at the late green or breaker stage. As a consequence of high ethylene chlorophyll is degraded and other pigments are being produced. This results in the typical color of the mature fruit peel. Activity of many maturation-related enzymes increases. Starch, organic acids and in some cases, such as avocado lipids, are mobilized and converted to sugars. Pectins, the main component of the middle lamella are degraded. The fruit softens. These metabolic activities are accompanied by a high respiration rate and consequently by high oxygen consumption. Ethylene levels are especially high in the separating tissues resulting in abscission of the fruit.
(Margret Sauter, University of Hamburg.)