What’s Lurking in Your French Fries?

What's LurkingInYour French Fries_When I first heard the word, acrylamide, I thought it had something to do with paint, as in acrylic paint or something.  OK, so what in the heck does this have to do with your health?

Well, plenty. Acrylamide is considered to be a potent carcinogen that can form in plant foods when using high-temperature cooking methods, such as frying, roasting, and baking. If fact, the foods that tend to contain the highest amounts are (don’t hate me) French fries and potato chips. That’s no surprise since frying creates the most acrylamide. The good news is that raw, plant foods and those cooked by steaming or boiling don’t contain acrylamide.

But, does this mean that you shouldn’t ever have French fries? Sure you can! When you want to have your French fry fix, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recommends the following to lessen your acrylamide exposure:

  1. Don’t store potatoes in the fridge because that can cause the accumulation of more acrylamide when you fry or bake them.
  2. Soak raw potato slices for 15-30 minutes in water before frying or baking. If frying, be sure to dry them off first. Baking, of course, is far healthier. And, if you avoid using oil when baking, even better.
  3. Cook your potatoes just until you get a golden brown color. Letting the potatoes get any browner results in more acrylamide.

Want more acrylamide avoidance tips? Check out this LINK at FDA.gov.

You should know that acrylamide is used in the manufacture of paper, plastic, and—yikes—cosmetics. Oh, and avoid being around cigarette smoke if you can, because it’s lurking there too.

To your good health!

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