WASHINGTON – In the latest video of the “Meat MythCrusher” series, Travis O’Quinn, Ph.D., associate professor of Animal Sciences at Kansas State Univ., talks about claims that grilling meat poses a cancer risk.

O’Quinn discusses that there is a possibility for compounds like heterocyclic amines (HCAs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) to form while grilling meat, however, the levels are much lower than those that have been shown to be risky and simple steps can reduce their formation.

“In the amounts that we consume, grilling meat is not a cancer risk,” O’Quinn said. “Studies in animals fed amounts thousands of times higher than human exposure have shown some risk, however research has not shown this in amounts people consume.”

O’Quinn also describes the variety of steps people can take to decrease their experience to HCAs and PAHs. 

“Research has shown that marinating meat products virtually eliminates formation of heterocyclic amines. Seasoning meat with spices like pepper, oregano and garlic has a similar affect,” O’Quinn said.

The Meat MythCrusher video series is produced by the North American Meat Institute (NAMI) and the American Meat Science Association (AMSA).