Fried foods…friend or foe?

I don’t think I need to visit this topic as I believe we know that fried food is not our friend. But…it’s always good to revisit these topics from time to time to give ourselves a refresher course on the reasons we should avoid certain foods and habits.

Fried foods = High risk for cancer, heart disease, diabetes, etc.

It’s a known and frequently shared fact that eating fried foods increases your risk of developing cancer, and those other nasty diseases.

There is one known “carcinogen” produced from heating and reheating oil to extremely high temperatures. This toxin is called “acrylamide”. I have written about this before.

Acrylamide is a chemical formed when foods are fried in super hot oil and particularly oil that has been heated more than once. Not only is the acrylamide toxic but so are the trans fats that these fried foods contain.

Fast foods, junk foods, highly processed foods…fried foods… all contain these “bad for us” chemicals derived from the cooking process. Particularly high in acrylamides are carbohydrates such as French fries and potato chips. The combo of high heat oil and carbs causes a reaction called the Maillard reaction which was discovered in 2002, but has been in our food history since humans started cooking foods.

I always knew that potato chips and French fries contained high levels of this toxin but something I did not realize until I revisited this topic for the purpose of this post is, FRIED SWEET POTATOES CONTAIN TWICE THE AMOUNT. Oh my goodness…my sweetie and I have had the odd order of sweet potatoe fries as a “healthier option” than regular fries and now I find out that they are worse for us than their white version.

According to an article I read while researching this topic, the top foods to avoid in order to reduce or eliminate acrylamides from your diet are:

  • French fries
  • potato chips
  • packaged cookies and crackers
  • processed dry cereals
  • bread with a dark crust or toasted bread
  • toasted nuts and peanut butter (I did not know this)
  • Prune juice
  • canned black olives
  • roasted coffee beans (oh no…..)

The only way to avoid this exposure would be to eat a non-processed, whole foods diet rich in fruits and veggies. We strive to do this but let’s face it…..every now and then a crispy French fry or a salty potato chip are impossible to resist.

Bottom line…avoid junk food. Snack on fruit and raw veggies.

Our health is worth the sacrifice. Don’t you agree?

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