The FDA Calls Out Yet Another Food Chemical To Avoid: Acrylamide

November 15, 2013 3:33 PM

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Yesterday the FDA released a Consumer Update suggesting that people try to reduce their consumption of a compound in found in well- and over-cooked foods, called acrylamide. Apparently the offending chemical is found in such staples as potatoes, cereals, coffee, crackers or breads, dried fruits and “many other foods,” according to the FDA. And apparently the chemical has been linked to cancer in animal studies enough times that the FDA has decided to urge us to reduce our intake as well, since it likely causes cancer in humans, too. Given the number of common – not to mention delectable – foods in which the compound is found, the new advisory is a bit unnerving. But since it’s also fairly easy to reduce your intake, don’t bang your head against your desk just yet.

The bad news is that, yes, acrylamide is found in many foods we love, like potatoes, breads, and, most horribly, coffee. The good news is that much of the acrylamide found in foods is actually generated during the cooking process – especially when items are fried, overcooked, or burned. The compound...

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