Is charred food harmful to health?

Beijing time on June 30, when eating steak, some people like to eat half-cooked, some people like to eat fully cooked. If you like to eat a steak with an outer skin and a thick, scorched skin, some kind friends may have warned you that this eating method may cause cancer. This warning has some basis: Several studies have shown that regular consumption of cooked, cooked charred meat can significantly increase the risk of cancer.

Is charred food harmful to health?


In a study by the University of Minnesota, scientists tracked the eating habits of 62,000 people over a nine-year period and found that those who regularly ate burnt meat were more than 60 percent more likely to develop pancreatic cancer.

There are two carcinogens associated with charred meat. The first is polycyclic amine (HCAs, also known as heterocyclic amines), which are usually produced in high-temperature cooking meats (including beef, pork, fish and poultry). At high temperatures, creatine in meat (a substance used to store energy) reacts with amino acids and sugars to form polycyclic amines, which cause strains in DNA and increase the risk of cancer in some people. The second carcinogen associated with charred meat is polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs). When fat drips from the meat, it causes a burning charcoal fire to emit flames and smoke, forming polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons.

Despite the apparent link between cancer and charred meat, researchers aren’t sure how much to eat. When polycyclic amines and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons are metabolized by certain enzymes in our bodies, they can damage our DNA. Because the level of enzymes in each person is different, the way these compounds are treated varies, so there are no ready-made answers for reference. In this case, most studies have been using rodents as subjects, directly applying a large number of these carcinogens. In some experiments, the experimental animals received doses that were one thousand times the amount of the average person might intake. As a result, there is no evidence to link the consumption of charred meat directly to adverse effects on the human body, which is why the U.S. Food and Drug Administration does not have guidance on this, but generally recommends that it be eaten less.

When it comes to charred meat, we tend to think of “barbecues”, but other cooking methods can also produce polycyclic and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, such as smoking, baking, stinging or frying. Fortunately, there are some things we can do to reduce carcinogens. First, remember the “slow and low” trick: cook the meat at a lower temperature, use indirect heat, rather than putting the meat directly on the flame. You also need to flip the meat block frequently. Marina juice also has a role to play, but the reason is not clear; beef can be placed in a mixture of beer or red wine and kept in the fridge for hours, while chicken is best marinated with a mixture of olive oil, lemon juice and garlic.

Do roasted vegetables also produce carcinogens? Can we still enjoy the courding with a corted zucchini? Yes, but there is also a slight risk of exposure to benzodiazepines. Benzodiazepine is a polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon that is also found in cigarette smoke. Although few studies have focused on the link between cancer and benzodiazepines in charred vegetables, it appears to be less harmful than carcinogens in charred meat.