The Skinny on Backyard Grilling

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

When it comes to grilling, choosing lean meats is only part of the challenge for keeping it healthy – because the wrong grilling strategies can actually cause harmful compounds that we definitely don’t want at our BBQ. So today we’re Getting the Skinny with Molly on 4 simple steps to ensure nutritious, delicious backyard grilling!

 

Grilling is linked to the formation of harmful compounds:

  • Grilling meat or seafood over an open flame can form compounds called PAH’s & HCA’s; these compounds are linked to changes in our DNA that can lead to an increased risk of cancer.
  • PAH’s (polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons) are created from flame-up that occurs when fat drops from meat into the grill.
  • HCA’s (heterocyclic amines) occur when amino acids and sugars are heated to high temperatures.

 

4 steps to ensure nutritious, delicious backyard grilling:

Keep it Lean

  • Opt for lean cuts of meat + trim visible fat to prevent fat from dripping and causing flame flare-ups
  • Grill poultry with skin-on to keep it moist, but remove skin before eating
  • Add seafood, veggies and fruits to your grilling lineup

Marinate it

Block it

  • Spread aluminum foil onto the grill, adding small holes to allow fat from the meat to drain through
  • Helps to prevent the flare-up from flames below

Mix in Produce:

  • Grilled fruits and don’t produce HCA’s
  • Plant-based meat substitutes + fruits and veggies are linked to a lower risk of cancer
  • Think kebobs, grilled fruit dessert, and grilled veggie “steaks” like Portobello and eggplant

 

 

###

Want more from Molly?  Click here to sign up for Nutrition Bites, her weekly e-newsletter with links to her Get the Skinny TV segments here on WGNO, and her weekly column in NOLA.com|The Times-Picayune!   And you can follow Molly on Facebook, Twitter, & Instagram:  @MollyKimballRD