Is it harmful to eat burnt food?


It can happen that a food is overcooked and we decide to consume it anyway. This seemingly harmless practice can be counterproductive to our health, as we will see below when we talk a little about the burned food.

The effect of heat on food

According to an article on the portal Consumer, the application of heat on food is useful for eliminating certain pathogens and deactivating them. Also, heat also prevents food from being infected with microorganisms.

However, cooking can encourage the development of toxic compounds if there is direct contact of the food with the flame, or if the cooking is done with a barbecue, since it is very likely that the food will be burned.

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In particular, cooking on a barbecue can lead to compounds called Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (HAP). These are compounds with a high mutagenic capacity, and that can cause DNA mutations. Among other things, this can increase the risk of cancer.

How to avoid the risks of burnt food?

To ignore the possible risks associated with burnt food, it is crucial balancing undercooking and overcooking food. This midpoint will be the one indicated for many of the foods that we want to prepare.

Everything starts from preventing the food from coming into direct contact with the flame. This will only happen if we cook with the heat of the embers, not with flames. In some cases, it is enough to regulate the flame so that the embers or burners are hot enough for adequate cooking.

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Frequent consumption of burnt food is negative and of little benefit to us. In this sense, the most appropriate for our health is do not consume foods burned, although you can choose to do it occasionally, and only in specific circumstances.

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