Does Grilling Cause Cancer?
Summer is finally here! The warm weather means more time outside and more lunches and dinners on the BBQ! Every year there are articles written about the link between BBQ meats and cancer. But is this true?
When meat is grilled under high heat at a BBQ, chemicals called HAAs (heterocyclic aromatic amines)and PAHs (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) are found. Both of these chemicals can be converted to enzymes that may damage DNA. There appears to be some link; a study published last year found that the DNA in prostate cancer cells had been damaged by DNA. The study proves an association, not a cause, but it definitely something to keep an eye on
It is possible to lower carcinogens in meat by marinating the meat before cooking, microwaving the meat, flipping the meat frequently, and trying not to char the meat. As with everything in life, try to eat BBQ meats in moderation and not overdo it. You don’t have to avoid the BBQ, just take precautions to lower your risk, and enjoy your summer!