Thursday, April 30, 2015

To Grill Or Not To Grill...

It may not be a question... depending on what's important to you!

As you know from my previous post, i'm a Livestrong at the YMCA instructor... helping other cancer survivors add life to their years, as I say!

We recently had a Nutritionist in to give a presentation to our group... thank you Maribeth Abrams!  We learned a lot regarding the benefits of non-Inflammatory foods vs. Inflammatory foods, Alkaline foods vs. Acidic foods, etc.

A lot of information to soak in... but one of the things that stood out to me, especially since we're at a time when a lot of us BBQ often, is the affect cooking meat at high temperatures has and it's increased risk to our bodies!

Review the excerpts below, and decide for yourself.


Not only is meat devoid of fiber and other nutrients that have a protective effect, but it also contains animal protein, saturated fat, and, in some case, carcinogenic compounds formed during the process of cooking meat.  These carcinogenic compounds may be to blame for part of the correlation between meat intake and increased cancer risk.  
(De Stefani E, Ronco A, Mendilaharsu M, Guidobono M, Deneo-Pellegrini H. Meat intake, heterocyclic amines, and risk of breast cancer: a case-control study in Uruguay. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 1997;6(8):573-581.)

Chemicals in Meat Cooked at High Temperatures and Cancer Risk

Key Points...

- Heterocyclic amines (HCAs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) are chemicals formed when muscle meat, including beef, pork, fish, and poultry, is cooked using high-temperature methods, such as pan frying or grilling directly over an open flame.

- The formation of HCAs and PAHs is influenced by the type of meat, the cooking time, the cooking temperature, and the cooking method.

- Exposure to high levels of HCAs and PAHs can cause cancer in animals; however, whether such exposure causes cancer in humans is unclear.

- Currently, no Federal guidelines address consumption levels of HCAs and PAHs formed in meat.

- HCA and PAH formation can be reduced by avoiding direct exposure of meat to an open flame or a hot metal surface, reducing the cooking time, and using a microwave oven to partially cook meat before exposing it to high temperatures.

- Ongoing studies are investigating the associations between meat intake, meat cooking methods, and cancer risk.

For more information, go to... cooked-meats-fact-sheet

In this together!

Coach T

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