View Full Version : Marinating 'may cut cancer risk'.

Darryl Shaw
12-31-2008, 04:46 AM
Marinating a steak in red wine or beer can cut down the number of cancer-causing agents produced when it is fried or grilled, research suggests.

Meat cooked in this way contains relatively high levels of cancer-causing compounds called heterocyclic amines (HAs).

However, Portuguese researchers found HA levels in steak were lower if it was steeped in alcohol before cooking.

Details of the research are highlighted in New Scientist magazine.

However, experts said the effect on health was likely to be minimal.

The high temperatures associated with frying and grilling convert the natural sugars and amino acids found in meat into HAs.

Previous research has shown that an olive oil, lemon juice and garlic marinade cut HA levels in chicken by as much as 90%.

The latest research, by a team at the University of Porto and published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, focused on the effect of an alcohol marinade.

They found six hours of marinating in beer or red wine cut levels of two types of HA by up to 90% compared with unmarinated steak.

Beer was more efficient at reducing levels of a third type of HA, cutting levels significantly in four hours, while wine took six hours to achieve a similar effect.


Garrett Smith
12-31-2008, 05:42 AM
Here's another marinade idea:
Tea polyphenols inhibit the formation of mutagens during the cooking of meat. (http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11943606?ordinalpos=6&itool=EntrezSystem2.PEntrez.Pubmed.Pubmed_ResultsP anel.Pubmed_DefaultReportPanel.Pubmed_RVDocSum)
Powerful mutagens are formed during the broiling or frying of meat. These mutagens cause specific cancers in animal models, and epidemiological studies suggest that they increase the risk of breast and colon cancer. It is important, therefore, to inhibit the formation of these mutagens. Application of tea polyphenols, polyphenon 60 from green tea, and polyphenon B from black tea, to both surfaces of ground beef before cooking inhibits the formation of the mutagens in a dose-related fashion. This procedure is simple and effective, and utilizes inexpensive tea, a product that deserves consideration for practical use.