Grilling and the Cancer Connection.

A number of studies have been published in the last two decades adding up to evidence that eating charred, smoked, meat or chicken could raise the chance of having pancreatic, colorectal and prostate cancers.

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A review carried out in 2010 of the evidence of cancer and well-done meat concluded that high intake of well-done meat, high exposure of meat carcinogens especially HCAs may increase the risk of a human variety of cancer.

Heterocyclic amines which can also be referred to as Heterocyclic aromatic amines (HAA) is a form of a chemical formed in cooked red meat and or rarely in poultry and fish. Another form of chemicals has also been linked to cancer which is called the Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and are formed while grilling meat directly over a heated surface or open fire form fat and juices that drip on to the surface or direct fire, causing smoke and flames. These smoke adhere to the surface of the meat.

Incomplete combustion of data that drip on the grill he most important factor in PAH production appears to be the incomplete combustion of fats that drip on the grill.

Both chemical substances (HAA s and PAHs are easily metabolized by enzymes in the body which might cause DNA mutation or damage which may lead to the development of cancer. Eating a lot of charred meat frequently could produce a type of cellular damage that raises the risk of cancer. Grilling desserts and soda contain a lot of sugar which is a key contributor to obesity which is a clear risk factor for cancer.

Therefore grilling meat in foil and marinating it with herbs and spices may reduce the risk of potential carcinogens. But clearly those who eat a whole lot of uncontrolled charred grill should stay away from smoking cigarettes a day or heavy alcohol. Nevertheless, eating grilled meat should be with moderation and trying not to overcook or char meat.

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The most important factor in PAH production appears to be the incomplete combustion of fats that drip on the grill.