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Originally published January 16 2007

Acrylamide content of most foods remains a mystery

by Erin Bates

(NaturalNews) Acrylamides -- a cancer-causing agent created when foods or fried or grilled -- is beginning to concern consumers. However, those concerned hard having a hard time getting a handle on the problem.

Consumers are finding it impossible to get data on acrylimides in their favorite baked or fried snacks, because nobody puts acrylamide in food. Since they are not added to food -- much like cholesterol -- it's not required to be listed on the label.

The agent is a byproduct of cooking starchy food at high temperatures. Acrylamide levels found in potatoes that are fried or baked at high temperatures may not exist in potatoes that are boiled or mashed. Acrylamides also form in other starches, such as toasted oats, flour, or sweet potatoes. Being organic doesn't seem to affect the presence of acrylamides.

The Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) surveyed manufacturers of 30 products, and found that none provided information on the acrylamide content of their products. The CSPI now wants the government to publish new data on acrylamides in major brands; the most recent FDA data on brand-name foods is more than two years old.

"It's simply impossible for consumers to try to keep track of how much acrylamide is in different foods and different brands," said CSPI's Michael Jacobsen. "Consumers rely on the government to ensure the safety of these products, and the government simply isn't doing it."


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