By Amanda Wilkes:
For me there is nothing better than a BBQ by the pool on a Sunday afternoon. As it became a more regular activity, I began feeling quite guilty about what I was putting into my body. So I started researching the harmful effects that barbecuing can have on health. Even though it tastes great, the secret behind that cancer-causing charred flavor is not so great after all. Although I am happy to be knowledgeable, I am a bit depressed to know that I will have to make some changes. I wasn’t ready to give up my Sunday tradition altogether, so I explored a few of the healthier techniques to barbecuing.
-Use gas, propane, or electric grills
Using wood or charcoal can release particles into the air or food that can become lodged in the throat or lungs. Charcoal will also release toxins directly into the delectable meat that you are about to eat.
-Use lean cuts of meat (preferably grass-fed beef and free-range chickens)
They produce less carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) and heterocyclic amines (HCA), which cause lung and heart problems.
-Use tofu or veggie burgers
They produce little to no carcinogenic polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and heterocyclic amines (HCA), which cause lung and heart problems.
-Thaw meat and poultry before cooking it
This way there is no overexposure to the outside, while the inside is still frozen.
–Use alcohol, olive oil, lemon, or garlic to avoid charring
Char causes cancer. Remove any char before consuming.
-Do not cook directly on coals
Move rack away from coals to reduce HCA levels.
As for me, I enjoy a good veggie burger; and if that is my healthiest choice, then that is the one I am going to make. Instead of chips, I will make my own kale chips. Instead of fries, I will make sweet potatoes fries. The Sunday menu may change a bit, but it will be equally delicious! The good news is that, with these helpful tips, I may be able to enjoy a couple more years of Sunday Fundays! For more healthy barbecuing tips visit this web site.