Why is acrylamide dangerous?

Alan Greene, MD
Acrylamide (C3H3ONH2) is a chemical that is both manufactured for industrial uses and produced naturally in certain foods as a by-product of cooking at high temperatures. According to the World Health Organization, acrylamide is known to cause cancer in animals and can cause nerve damage in humans. Some studies also link this chemical to infertility. The EPA regulates acrylamide in drinking water to protect public health, but it’s not currently regulated in food. Yet, the amount of acrylamide in a typical large order of fast food fries can be 200 to 2000 times the amount allowed by the EPA in a glass of water.

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