CHICAGO – Research published this week in the Journal of Food Science have shown that marinating meats may decrease cancer-forming compounds by more than 70 percent.

The compounds, heterocyclic amines (HCA), are produced during grilling.

Researchers at Kansas State University (KSU) have reportedly tested three commercial spice- containing marinade blends (Caribbean, southwest, and herb) on round beef steaks. The steaks were marinated for one hour and then grilled at 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

The scientists found that steaks marinated in the Caribbean blend produced the highest decrease in HCA content (88 percent), followed by the herb blend (72 percent) then the southwest blend (57 percent).

“Commercial marinades offer spices and herbs which have antioxidants that help decrease the HCAs formed during grilling,” said Dr. J.S. Smith, principal researcher at KSU. “The results from our study have a direct application since more consumers are interested in healthier cooking.”


Source: Institute for Food Technology