carbon is carcinogenic -- why the continued use of BURNED food?

Sounds divine, aside from BURNING food. Perhaps back off on the deadly trend of blackened food to merely wilt the green onions? We need to put charred food to rest & opt for kinder treatment of the priceless veggies we grow/buy & healthier habits that won't cause harm to our guts.

  • Posted by: eliza
  • April 29, 2019


Taylor M. April 29, 2019
Stephanie B. April 29, 2019
This is just my opinion, but there's a lot worse things that can damage the GI tract and pose a greater cancer risk than a couple charred scallions. Overall diet, habits, and nutrition are more important than errant meals. When it comes down to it, a lot of foods we eat are mix of some bad things and (hopefully) a lot of good things, and we all make choices about what we find unacceptable for ourselves. If you find charred foods as unacceptable as I find sugary sodas, I certainly won't insist that you change your ways.
Smaug April 29, 2019
We are a carbon based life form, as is most of our food.
Smaug April 29, 2019
per"Carbon is the 6th most abundant element in nature and forms the basis for all of the organic molecules in all living organisms, including fats, proteins, carbohydrates and nucleic acids. Behind oxygen, carbon is the second most abundant element in the human body, accounting for 18% of body weight". So it may be a bit difficult to avoid.
eliza April 29, 2019
SMUG: you missed my point. blackened food contains a known carcinogen.
Smaug April 29, 2019
Li'l Eliza- ah, I thought your point was that carbon was a carcinogen, that being what you said. Cheers to Uncle Tom.
Stephanie B. April 29, 2019
I'd venture to say that charring foods probably forms more than one potential carcinogen, and different foods will form different compounds. The process of charring is chemically complex. But while we recently discovered (and are still discovering) various compounds and metabolites that may or may not be carcinogenic in our foods, they have been there all along throughout our history of cooking. We really haven't come up with new ways to cook food since we figured out fire (I don't know if instant pot or sous vide cookers count), so this isn't a new trend. Yet it's only recently that our food production, and our health as its linked to our food, has become such a widespread problem. This leads me to think one recipe of charred scallion and kale salad as part of a diverse and moderate diet presents minimal, if any, risk to most people. A recipe full of greens, some fats, and maybe paired with a whole grain might even be a net benefit. Again, how much risk you want to take on is up to you and your specific state of health and lifestyle, but keep in mind that others are not obligated to make the same food choices.

As an aside, I hope you made a typo in your reply to Smaug. He (I think?) may be a bit prickly at times but does try to provide information and answers to people's questions. There's a difference between some harmless sass and being rude.
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