Eating even small amounts of burnt food poses a major health risk, possibly due to the carcinogenic substance acrylamide.
cook them foods It provides a plus of flavor and makes them more appealing to the palate, but also prevents the presence of microorganisms that can harm our health. However, overcooking food to the point of burning is equally problematic. Who is responsible? acrylamide, a chemical we were warned about in Spain Spanish Agency for Food Safety and Nutrition (AESAN)Explaining that it “occurs naturally in starch-containing food products during high-temperature cooking processes”.
this acrylamide It consists mainly of sugars and amino acids found in many foods, especially asparagine. It causes an appetizing color and aroma through a chemical process known as the Maillard reaction. The socarrat of a good paella, the barbecue grilled pieces of meat, or the breakfast toasts we spend marking time in the toaster: none of these options are healthy when eaten regularly.
What effects does acrylamide cause?
They explain that it is the intestinal tract that absorbs this substance, which is distributed and metabolized from AESAN to all organs. Various experiments with laboratory animals have determined that those who are orally exposed are more likely to develop genetic mutations and tumors in mice, particularly in the mammary glands, testicles, and thyroid glands, while in mice it affects the Harder and mammary glands. , lungs, ovaries, skin and stomach. Likewise, harmful effects on the nervous system, pre- and postnatal development and male reproduction have been observed.
To date, the results of human studies have not provided consistent evidence of the development of kidney, endometrial, and ovarian cancer related to dietary acrylamide exposure. They concluded that more research is needed to confirm this, from the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), and in fact, they scored the average amount of this substance with consumption of 425 risk points and thought it would be a health hazard. The British Food Standards Agency (FSA) of 10,000 risk points, for its part, considers it a possible carcinogen.
What can we do to avoid risks?
Considering the above, we will not have to worry if we cook the food correctly and we will be able to continue eating everything, even ordering socarrat from time to time. In this sense, OCU gave 6 tips to reduce the risk of acrylamide. He listed them on his website and nowadays they are focused on avoiding this substance. That’s why they recommend never storing potatoes in the refrigerator, but instead in a dark, cool, dry place. Reason? If they are exposed to a temperature lower than 6ºC, they will produce larger amounts of acrylamide when cooked.
It is always better to fry, as more substance is produced by frying. However, the amount of acrylamide will decrease if we soak, peel and cut into pieces for about 15 or 30 minutes before cooking, before placing in the pan. If we have a deep fryer, the ideal is to program it so that the temperature of the oil is below 170 °C. In the oven, the limit is 195 °C, which prevents the recipes from turning into toast without being fried. . Finally, we must throw away the burnt parts of the food, although we are sometimes tempted.
Which foods are the most dangerous?
According to AESAN, foods that contribute to acrylamide exposure vary according to a person’s age. According to this, the most dangerous for adults are baked potatoes with 49%, french fries and their products, roasted coffee (34%), soft plan (23%), cookies and crispy bread. For children older than one year and adolescents, they are products obtained from potatoes, excluding chips and snacks (51%).
This is followed by the soft plan, cereals, cookies, and other derivatives of cereals or potatoes that can contribute up to 25% exposure. In addition, cakes and sweets for babies account for up to 15%, and processed cereals up to 14%. Children under one year of age are at higher risk of consuming foods not made from grains (60%), those made with grains 30%, and other potato derivatives (48%).
It should be noted that acrylamide is also found in other non-food items such as tobacco, which is a much more important source of non-dietary exposure for smokers and passive smokers than food. It also has a wide variety of non-food industrial uses, so some people may be exposed to it in the workplace by epidermal absorption or inhalation.
with incoming information Spanish.
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