LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Some meats, when cooked at certain temperatures, can cause cancer, according to researchers at UC Davis.

Dr. Jim Felton and a team of UC Davis researchers have spent years studying why meats can potentially cause cancer.

The team’s results reportedly found that certain cooking temperatures can ignite a chemical reaction inside the meat that promotes cancer-causing carcinogens.

“These are extremely potent cancer-causing substances, some of the most potent that have ever been found,” Felton said.

One potential solution to the problem is the use of marinade.

According to the American Institute of Cancer Research, using marinade can reduce carcinogens by as much as 99 percent.

The marinade works as an insulator. The outside of the meat is can cook faster, which allows the meat to heat through without reaching the 300 – 350 degree mark, which is thought to be responsible for the potentially cancer-causing reaction.

The use of marinade also allows the meat to cook without over-burning.

“It’s actually the fat, dripping down on your charcoal briquettes or onto your grill materials, that comes then back up onto the meat and coats it, and makes it black” Felton said. “But in the chicken that we didn’t marinate, (which) looked very pale, but it was well done, it actually had more carcinogens because the marinate wasn’t protecting it.”

Dr. Felton also recommends to flip your meat frequently while cooking.

“Each time you turn it, it cools of,” Felton said. “And the meat doesn’t have a chance to reach those internal temperatures.”


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