Is BBQ AGEing You?

Did you know that May is National Barbecue Month?

The April showers have cleared and longer days make it enticing to head outdoors and fire up the BBQ. So we thought it good timing to review some important information related to the AGEs that are formed when food is cooked by excessive heat.

What are AGEs you ask? Advanced Glycation End-products (AGEs) are chemicals that have been linked to oxidation (free radical production), inflammation, diabetes, cancer and other chronic diseases. Stated simply, AGEs age us!

While some AGEs occur naturally in the body and in foods, their content increases drastically when food is cooked at high temperatures using dry heat, such as barbecuing. If you’ve heard that “burned meat causes cancer”, this is largely related to the carcinogenic attributes of AGEs and related chemicals (like heterocyclic amines (HCAs) and polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs)), that are present in charred foods.

But fret not Paleo pal – and don’t go tossing out your BBQ grill! We have great control over how much we let AGEs age us – and our cooking techniques play a big role.

To minimize your intake of AGEs, be sure to vary your cooking methods often. Be mindful that dry heat cooking at high temperatures (i.e. grilling, roasting, blackened, fried, seared, etc.) produces the most AGEs, while cooking with low heat and high moisture levels (i.e. poaching, steaming, stewing, boiling, etc.) produces the least amount of AGEs in foods.

When barbecuing, you can reduce the formation of AGEs (and other cancer-causing compounds) by using an acidic marinade on your meat for at least one hour before grilling.

So grill on! Just not every day. Varying the way we our cook food to include mostly low-heat and high-moisture techniques is our best bet at keeping these carcinogenic chemicals in check.

This week on the Paleo Plan blog, our dietician Sally writes all about AGEs, sharing a helpful list of Paleo foods that have the highest/lowest amount of AGEs, along with some tips for cooking to minimize the risk of developing AGE-related chronic diseases, such as cancer.

On that note, the Natural Cancer Prevention Summit started on Monday, with over 30 expert presentations to aid you in kicking the cancer-causing toxins out of your life. If you’d like to learn more about preventing or treating cancer naturally, then you don’t want to miss out on this valuable opportunity – it’s ONLINE and FREE to join this week only!

“Aging is not lost youth but a new stage of opportunity and strength.”
– Betty Friedan

In good health,
Kinsey Jackson, LMP, MS, CNS®
Paleo Plan Nutritionist

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AGEs – What You Need to Know

Paleo PlanAdvanced Glycation End-products, or AGEs are products of normal dietary metabolism in all animals and to a much lesser extent, plants as well. There are hundreds of different types of AGEs and although this rowdy gang behaves like oxidants with the potential to damage proteins such as collagen, DNA and our cells, our antioxidant system under normal conditions, does a good job of neutralizing and excreting most of them in our urine. Problems occur when there are too many AGEs for our antioxidants to handle.


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Are you Summer-ready? Join our Paleo Challenge!

summerWe had a fantastic group of members in our “Spring into Paleo” 30 Day Challenge – a BIG CONGRATS to everyone who participated!

Summer’s just around the corner, which means we’re gearing up for our next guided 30 day Paleo challenge, which will fire off the day before summer solstice (June 19th) – mark your calendars!

If you haven’t joined our FREE Facebook challenge group yet, well, you should! We’d love to help you to ‘go Paleo’ and ‘stick with it’!


Kinsey JacksonKinsey Jackson

Kinsey Jackson, LMP, MS, CNS® is a clinical nutritionist specializing in functional and evolutionary nutrition. Her own experience of overcoming multiple autoimmune disorders by adopting a Paleo lifestyle vastly contributes to her passion for helping others to also reclaim their health and vitality by making informed dietary decisions.