You can minimize your risks of cancer-causing compounds from grilling with these nine targeted grilling techniques:

  • Marinate
    Using this recipe, scientists from Lawrence Livermore Labs in Livermore, California, eliminated 95 percent of HCAs in poultry. While they're still not sure how it works—it may have to do with the marinade cooling down the meat—any oil-and-vinegar marinade should be protective.
  • Flip
    Another study from Livermore Labs found that turning burgers every minute reduced HCA formation by up to 99 percent compared to burgers that were flipped every five minutes.
  • Microwave
    Zapping meat to a half-cooked state before grilling removes some of the substances that react to heat and greatly reduces the chances of creating HCAs.
  • Cook on the Cooler Parts
    Move your food to the edge of the grill or to a spot where food won't drip directly on the heat source. If your propane or gas grill has a "dual burner," turn one burner off and cook on the other side.
  • Buy Lower-Fat Meat
    With leaner red meat, chicken and fish, you'll reduce the amount of fat that drips onto the grill and the amount of PAH created.
  • Regulate Temperature
    The heat should be high enough to cook food thoroughly, but low enough to prevent charring.
  • Douse
    Use a squirt bottle to douse flames that get too high.
  • Avoid Mesquite
    Burning this wood generates lots of PAHs. Instead, use oak or hickory.
  • Steam Vegetables in Advance
    That way, they spend less time on the grill and have less of a chance to absorb smoke.
For more healthy-eating advice, check out

Will this warning about cancer-causing agents in grilling change your behavior? Share your thoughts in the comments area.

Keep Reading:
The girls' guide to summertime grilling
Grill master Adam Perry's 5 steps to a perfectly grilled steak
The 6 tools you need for barbecue heaven
As a reminder, always consult your doctor for medical advice and treatment before starting any program.


Next Story