Acrylamide Danger & Mitigation

Acrylamide Danger & Mitigation

Studies by the National Cancer Institute believe some cancers may be related to Acrylamide such as Oral, pharynx, larynx, esophagus, kidney, breast and overy.  As so many foods contain this potentially toxic substance, I was curious if there was a way to prevent or minimovarycrylamide aside from avoiding the foods that contained the highest concentration.

First, let me explain what it is.

Acrylamide is a chemical created in foods when starches and other carbohydrates are heated (over 120°C or 240°F) during cooking.

There is concern that acrylamide may be a carcinogen (cause cancer).

Acrylamide in food was first discovered in April 2002 by a group of Swedish researchers. It was well known that acrylamide had been used for years in industrial settings – it is used in products such as plastics, grout, water treatment and some cosmetics.

In extreme exposure, acrylamide is carcinogenic and has been known to cause cancer in high-dose experimental lab tests and rodent studies. Although they only tested on lab rats with doses of 1,000x to 10,000x any dose we could possibly consume.

There is no current confirmation that it causes cancer in humans. However, studies did prove that boiling, steaming and microwaving carbs did not demonstrate the creation of these Acrylamides.

Where is Acrylamide found?

The following foods (mostly processed foods) that have been identified to contain acrylamide are: bagels, baked goods, biscuits, black olives, bread, breaded chicken, breakfast cereals, coffee, donuts, dried fruits (the highest concentrations of acrylamide are found in dried pears and prunes), dry soup mix, french fries, peanut butter, pizza, popcorn, potato chips, pretzels, prune juice, prunes & toast. I find it interesting that most foods that are not part of a healthy whole-food, plant-based diet contain the highest concentration.


In April, 2015 a study was conducted to see if Acrylamide consumption can be mitigated through diet. Evaluation of protective effect of freeze-dried strawberry, grape, and blueberry powder on acrylamide toxicity in mice. The study found that berry powders have remarkable intervention against the Acrylamide-induced general toxicity, genotoxicity (in genetics it’s defined as a destructive effect on a cell’s genetic material (DNA, RNA) and reproductive toxicity.

Anthocyanins, a blue, violet, or red flavonoid (powerful antioxidants with anti-inflammatory properties) pigment found in plants may contribute to the intervention. More reasons to put berries at the top of your fruit consumption list.

Interesting Studies Dec 7, 2017: Exposure to acrylamide induces cardiac developmental toxicity in zebrafish during cardiogenesis.

Oct, 2017: Toxic effect of acrylamide on the development of hippocampal neurons of weaning rats.
Hippocampus, region of the brain that is associated primarily with memory.

“Better Health Through Better Understanding”

Chef Jeff

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