Do Potato Chips Really Pose a threat to my health?

Img c/o pixabay

Img c/o pixabay

Potato chips are now considered “Cancer-in-a can or bag” snack. Did you know that the Pringles Company made an effort to avoid taxes levied against “luxury foods” like chips in the UK. They purported the potato content of their chips was so low they weren’t really “potato chips”. Imagine the horror at realizing they are actually made from rice, wheat, corn and potato flakes pressed into shape. This makes them one of the most toxic processed foods you can eat.

One of the most hazardous ingredients in these chips is a byproduct of the processing itself. Acrylamide is cancer causing and a potentially neurotoxic chemical that is created when the carbohydrate foods are cooked at high temperatures. Would you believe that ALL potato chip products tested exceeded the legal limit of acrylamide by 39 to 910 times and include more than 800 different heat-induced compounds? This chemical can be found in chips, fries and other roasted or fried potato foods. It is also found in bread crust, toast, crisp bread, roasted breakfast cereals and various processed snacks. Roasted coffee beans also contain Acrylamide, especially chicory coffee.

I don’t know about you but the suggestion of eating more organic foods to protect my health makes sense. The federal limit for acrylamide in drinking water is 0.5 parts per billion or 0.12 micrograms in 8 ounces of water, while a 6 ounce serving of fries contain 60 micrograms or 500 times over the allowable limit. Scary, isn’t it? Cape Cod Robust Russet potatoes have 910 times the legal limit, Kettle chips lightly salted have 505 times and Kettle chips with honey Dijon are 495 times the limit. Surprisingly, baked chips may be worse than fried.

A 3-year EU project (Heat-Generated Food Toxicant or “Heatox”) found there are more than 800 heat-induced compounds. A few well-known toxins created in high-temperature cooking are Heterocyclic Amines (HCAs), Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs) and Advance Glycation End Products (AGEs). Some dangers can be providing cancer-causing PAH’s to meat and AGEs can lead to oxidative stress, inflammation, increased risk of heart disease, diabetes and kidney disease.

In 2011 even Pepsi’s Frito-Lay had a master plan to tap into the healthy foods market and boost their nutrition business by 2020. Dietary hazards like monosodium glutamate (MSG) was to be replaced with natural seasoning such as molasses and paprika with artificial colors being replaced with beet juice, purple cabbage and carrots. A total of 60 snacks were to get an all-natural makeover.

We should all be consuming raw or minimally processed foods and discarding those fries and potato chips along with doughnuts (and I love them!) as well as all sodas. Switch to water or organic teas instead. Eating organic eggs from organic chickens, (an incredible source of high-quality nutrients) is a good start for healthy eating. Overall, fresh whole organic foods are the “secret” to getting our bodies healthier.

Once we get used to eating fresh organic whole foods, we can throw together a healthful and delicious meal from scratch in the time it would take to grab something at a fast food place that is definitely dangerous to our systems. It ultimately ends up being much more expensive at todays prices than cooking our own. I don’t know about all of you, but I love saving money and really love the thought of putting fresh, healthful foods in my family’s stomachs. Use your imagination for those healthy meals and just enjoy, knowing you are much healthier!

Sometimes we need a little crunch in our lives. I came across a quick, simple, easy recipe to use instead of potato chips. As you already know, potato chips will not be on any “cancer diet”. Sorry!

All you need is:
1 pound of brussel sprouts – organic if possible
2 t of coconut oil – or olive oil if you prefer
Sea salt- or Himalayan salt

Prep time: 10 minutes
Cook time: 5 minutes

  • Preheat your oven to 350 F
  • Cut the bottom of the brussel spouts off so the leaves fall off. Wash them or either let them dry naturally. You can use a small amount of heat from the hair dryer if you are in a hurry. This removes the water and keeps them from wilting during the cooking process.
  • Place the separated leaves into a medium bowl.
  • Toss the leaves with a small drizzle of coconut oil and layer the leaves on a baking sheet in a single layer.
  • You can add salt or any spices or herbs.
  • Bake the brussel sprouts for 4 to 6 minutes or until the tips are lightly brown and crispy. Be careful not to burn them.

Yum! These are much better for you than potato chips.

Dr Fredda Branyon

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