Acrylamide – How Much of This Stuff Are You Eating?

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by: Dr. Craig A. Maxwell

Have you heard of acrylamide? Of all the carcinogens in processed food, this is one to be aware of. This compound is a byproduct manufactured by certain cooking techniques of many of the processed foods you eat everyday. If you’re a fan of French fries and potato chips, even the more natural variety, this is an article you need to read.

What is Acrylamide?

Acrylamide is an odorless, colorless chemical compound derived from acrylic acid. It is commonly used in industrial processes such as the production of plastics, dyes, papers, and textile treatments. This chemical is also used in trace amounts in water and wastewater treatment, including sewage.

Federal regulators limit the amount of acrylamide in drinking water to a relatively-safe 1/10th of a microgram per 8-ounce glass. In your food, however, this hidden carcinogen boasts much higher levels. For example, a six-ounce serving of French fries can contain over 60 micrograms of acrylamide – making it over 500 times the legal limit!  (Potato chips are even worse at nearly 900 times this limit.)

Acrylamide isn’t purposely added to your food like other dangerous fillers and preservatives. Rather, it is released by heating certain foods over 212 degrees Fahrenheit. When starchy foods like potatoes are fried at these high temperatures, it releases this toxic byproduct directly into your food.

Baked potato chips appear to be no better. Studies have shown that baked chips contain 3 times the amount of acrylamide as fried! This is because most chips are chemically processed first before being put into the oven.

Studies Link Acrylamide to Several Types of Cancer

According to a study published by Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, dietary exposure to acrylamide has been shown to increase risk of breast, endometrial, and ovarian cancer among postmenopausal women. It was concluded that women with the highest amount of acrylamide in their blood were at a noticeable increase for risk of estrogen-receptor positive breast cancer.

Carcinogenic chemicals like acrylamide work by either causing your normal, healthy cells to mutate or by tricking your healthy cells into an overdrive of cell division. This excessive division leaves you at increased risk for abnormal cellular development in the future.

Food Sources Highest in Acrylamide Byproduct 

The list below shows foods that when fried, baked, roasted or broiled release dangerous levels of acrylamide byproduct.

These foods include:

1.     French Fries00065

2.     Potato Chips

3.     Popcorn

4.     Crackers

5.     Pretzels

6.     Breakfast Cereals

7.     Brewed Coffee

8.     Processed Cookies, Cakes, and Pies

9.     Store-Bought Breads and Bagels

10.    Taco Shells

11.    Soup Mix

12.    Pizza

13.    Peanut Butter

14.    Canned Chile with Meat

15.    Breaded Chicken

cigarette smokeNon-Food Sources of Acrylamide

Even if you avoid eating all of the foods listed above, you’re still at risk for exposure to acrylamide from non-food sources. Cigarette smoke is the most common source of acrylamide and should be avoided at all costs (even second-hand smoke). You’re also at risk for acrylamide exposure if you work in certain agricultural or manufacturing settings.

Protect Yourself from Cancer

It seems everywhere you turn these days, somebody is releasing new information about some cancer-causing chemical or substance. Frustration is completely understandable as it seems there’s just nothing safe to eat, drink or breathe anymore.

In our 21st century lifestyle of convenience and industrialization, we are exposed to more health dangers than ever before. But living in fear and avoiding everything isn’t the way to go. It’s about being aware of the dangers and knowing how to protect yourself from them.

Dietary Changes

Indulging in a small bag of organic potato chips or some French fries every once in the while isn’t going to do serious harm to your health if you ordinarily make healthier food choices. I recommend that 90% of your diet consist of organic produce, beans, seeds, nuts, legumes, meat, poultry, wild-caught fish, and healthy fats like coconut oil and butter. These health-promoting foods will give your immune system a strong boost so it can withstand environmental contaminants and occasional food “cheats.”

Exercise

Regular exercise is also your key to optimum health. You don’t have to join a gym to be healthy. All you need is a brisk walk 30 minutes per day, 3 days a week to get you started. Rebounding is another excellent way to get a fun, healthy workout that boosts your immune system in an incredible way. One rebounder can do more for your health than any other piece of gym equipment you could invest in!

The Right Dietary Supplements

Diamond Nutritional’s Foundation Vitamins

Are you already taking a multivitamin to improve your health? If so, I strongly consider stopping it. Many store-bought vitamins contain unnecessary additives, dyes, and preservatives that can further harm your health.

Diamond Nutritional’s Foundation Vitamins are made from ingredients designed to give you the immune boost you need to help protect yourself from serious disease.

These ingredients include:Foundation Vitamins (NO iron)

  • Vitamin A – 7,500 IU
  • Vitamin C – 500 mg
  • Vitamin D3 – 500 IU
  • Vitamin E – 100 IU
  • Vitamin K – 50 mcg
  • Thiamine – 25 mg
  • Riboflavin – 25 mg
  • Niacin – 25 mg
  • Vitamin B6 – 38 mg
  • Folic Acid – 400 mcg
  • Vitamin B12 – 500 mcg
  • Biotin – 200 mcg
  • Panthothenic Acid – 150 mg
  • Calcium – 100 mg
  • Iodine – 113 mcg
  • Magnesium – 200 mg
  • Zinc – 10 mg
  • Selenium – 100 mcg
  • Copper – 1 mg
  • Manganese – 2.5 mg
  • Chromium – 200 mcg
  • Molybdenum – 25 mcg
  • Potassium – 50 mg
  • Choline Bitartrate USP – 50 mg
  • Inositol – 50 mg
  • Mixed Tocopherols – 50 mg
  • Lipoic Acid – 25 mg
  • N-Acetyl-Cysteine USP – 25 mg
  • Rutin – 25 mg
  • Lutein – 3 mg
  • Boron – 1.5 mg
  • Lycopene – 1 mg
  • Vanadyl Sulfate Hydrate – 1 mg

Diamond Nutritional’s Vitamin D3 – 5,000 IUsProBiotic (regular)

Over 85% of Americans are severely vitamin D3 deficient and studies have shown that this deficiency has a direct link to the development of cancer.

Diamond Nutritional’s Vitamin D3 – 5,000 IUs supplement gives your immune system a powerful boost. Many conventional physicians recommend taking 400 IUs per day, but findings have revealed that most adults need a much higher amount.

Diamond Nutritional’s Probiotic Formula

85% of your immune system is located in your gut, which means it is critical you keep it healthy and balanced. Diamond Nutritional’s Probiotic Formula contains 22 billion live, active cultures designed to reseed your gut, improve your digestion, and give your immune system a cancer-preventing boost.

This complete formula contains lactobacillus acidophilus, lactobacillus paracasei, bifidobacterium lactis, bifidobacterium bifidum, lactobacillus plantarum, lactobacillus rhamnosus, saccharomyces boulardii.

The key to staying well in this modern world is finding a balance between the temptation of convenience food and the health benefits of whole food and the right supplements. Remember, if you want to avoid chronic pain and disease, you should eat as many whole and minimally-processed foods as possible, exercise regularly, and invest in the right health-promoting supplements. The rest will take care of itself.

Resources:

http://cebp.aacrjournals.org/content/16/11/2304.abstract
http://www.nature.com/bjc/journal/v88/n1/abs/6600726a.html

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