6 Ways to Safer Grilling

William Dale, M.D., Ph.D. | June 15, 2016 June 16, 2016

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What to try

Red meats, especially those cooked over an open flame, are associated with a higher risk of certain cancers. Try these tips to reduce your risk the next time you’re grilling.

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1. Start with lean cuts

Dripping fat fans the flames and increases charring.

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2. Marinate

Soaking meat in olive oil, beer, red wine, or teriyaki sauce, or another marinade, can reduce the formation of carcinogenic compounds.

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3. Give it a zap

Precook meat in a microwave to reduce the amount of time it’s exposed to high temperatures.

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4. Avoid charring

Don’t put meat directly on an open flame or cook it too long on a hot surface.

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5. Turn, turn, turn

Keep turning the meat while it’s cooking, which reduces the chances of forming dangerous chemicals known as heterocyclic amines (HCAs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs).

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6. Steer clear of the burned bits

Remove charred portions of meat from your grill and toss.