Monday - Thursday: 9am - 4pm Friday: 9am - 1pm Weekend: Refresh

Beer Marinade – Quick Tip for Healthier Barbeques

Barbeque season in fast approaching in the U.S. and although the tradition offers a lot in the way of social benefits, grilling foods has proven to be decidedly unhealthy. Fortunately, a group of European scientists have come up with a way to cut back on harmful polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs), carcinogens that can form when meat is cooked on the grill or elsewhere at very high temperatures. The compounds have been associated with tumors, birth defects and reproductive problems in lab animals and with colorectal cancer in humans. The trick to reducing the PAHs in your barbequed steaks and chops, according to the research team, is to marinate them first in beer. The investigators from Universidade do Porto in Portugal reported that four hours of marinating meat in regular or nonalcoholic pilsner or dark ale reduced the PAHs in meat by slightly more than half compared with meat that hasn’t been marinated. Overall, the researchers found that using dark ale (which contains more antioxidants than the other brews) cut PAHs by 53 percent. The nonalcoholic pilsner beer marinade cut PAHs by 25 percent and the regular Pilsner beer reduced them by only 13 percent. When the researchers performed their study, they cooked pork to well done on a charcoal grill.

Sources:
Olga Viegas et al, “Effect of Beer Marinades on Formation of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons in Charcoal-Grilled Pork,” J. Agric. Food Chem., 2014, 62 (12), pp 2638–2643 DOI: 10.1021/jf404966w