Beware of the Grill for National Barbecue Month – Go Vegetarian

4 May, 2011 (18:52)


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RECIPES: Barbecue Vegetable Brochettes, Hearty Barbeque Beans, Tropical Freeze

By Rae Udy

May is National Barbecue Month, according to statesybolsusa.org, but many people are unaware that grilling some foods can produce cancer-causing compounds.
( http://statesymbolsusa.org/National_Symbols/American_Hollidays.html )
Heterocyclic amines or HCAs are produced during the cooking of many animal products. In January 2005 the federal government officially added HCAs to its list of carcinogens.
The Cancer Project, Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, is a collaborate of physicians, researchers and nutritionists who educate the public about the benefits of a healthy diet for cancer prevention and survival.
( http://cancerproject.org/media/news/fiveworstfoodsreport.php )
They determined that many commonly grilled foods contain alarmingly high levels of HCAs. The five worst foods to grill are chicken breast, well done steak, barbecued pork, salmon and hamburger.
HCAs form when creatine, an amino acid found in muscle, and natural sugars found in meats, are heated during cooking. Grilling at a high heat and for long cooking times increase this risk.
Nearly all meats, including chicken and fish, produce significant amounts of HCAs when grilled. When cooked on the grill, chicken produced more than 10 times the amount of HCAs found in grilled beef.
The Cancer Project doesn’t want you to give up grilling but they want you to try alternatives to safer grilling. Grilled soy-based veggie burgers, veggie brochettes, portabella mushroom ‘steaks’ and other vegetarian foods contain no or negligible levels of HCAs when grilled.
Marinating meats before grilling may reduce cancer-causing substances that occur when meat is charred over high heat. Some marinades contain antioxidants and vitamins that may offer protection against heart disease and cell and tissue damage.
( http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/factsheet/Risk/cooked-meats )
( http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/15072585 )
( http://northridgehospital.org/Who_We_Are/209807 )
( http://ag.ansc.purdue.edu/meat_quality/grilling.html )
The following recipes are found on The Cancer Project website.

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Posted in Articles, Healthy Beverages, Vegan Barbecue Recipes, Vegan Main Dish, Vegetarian Holiday Menus, Vegetarian Main Dish

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