Photo Credit : jeffreyw
Stand out of the line of fire of smoky fumes. Sure, that's the first defense. But what about the dangers of grilled dogs, ribs, and salmon? I've long heard tales of how a charcoal grilled burger is the equivalent of a carton of cigarettes. So when flipping through Cure magazine at my acupuncturist's office, I discovered an article from Lena Huang about "Good Grilling" with easy steps to reduce risk. If there's 225,000 metric tons of CO2, particulate matter, carbon monoxide, and other VOCs spewing into the atmosphere from 60 million BBQs across the country this holiday weekend, how about waving a flag this 4th of July over the carcinogens you eat?
1. Flip meat frequently when cooking to prevent HCAs from forming.
2. Raise grilling surface from the heat source to reduce the temperature and black char.
3. Cook at lower temperatures.
4. Marinate meats to decrease HCA formation up to 96 percent.
5. Pre-cook meats to limit exposure on the grill.
6. Trim fat off meat and grill leaner cuts that drip less to reduce exposure to PAHs.
7. Spread foil on or under the grill to reduce dripping fat that causes PAHs.
8. Grill veggie burgers, vegetables and fruits (HCAs only forms on muscle meats). Note: organ meat (liver), eggs, and tofu have little to no HCA content.
9. Skip the briquettes and their nasty contaminants. (Charcoal generates 11 pounds of CO2 and propane emits six pounds of CO2.) Go with lump charcoal.