Acrylamide

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One of the naturally occurring chemicals that are produced in food as it is cooked or baked. Typically, foods with higher levels of starch, such as potatoes or products made from potatoes, produce Acrylamide when they are fried, due to the temperatures reached during the cooking process. However, there are many other foods that also contain this chemical, such as roasted nuts, snack foods, taco shells, juices, such as prune juice that is processed at high temperatures, granola bars, cereal, and a variety of other processed foods. It is also a chemical that is used for industrial purposes such as the production of organic chemicals and textile dyes as well as a coagulant added in small, regulated amounts for use in treating drinking water. Water from treatment facilities using the chemical appears to have one of the lowest levels of Acrylamide being consumed daily, containing .015 micrograms per ounce of water in comparison to French fries that can contain from 10 to 13 micrograms of the chemical per ounce of fries.

Researchers and nutritionists throughout the world are presently debating the concern regarding this chemical, some using evidence that consumption of higher levels of Acrylamide may cause cancer in lab animals as the key issue behind their position to revise guidelines for healthy diets. However, more research is being undertaken to consider the results from the consumption of Acrylamide in order to adequately propose action that fully considers all concerns associated with the chemical.

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