Grilling – the word brings a lot of images to mind. The smell of mouth-watering food, bbq in the backyard, and summer fun. You are quite right; grilling is all about that.
However, the type of grill you choose can pose problems. For instance, your gas or charcoal grill may not be allowed in your apartment. Besides, the health issues associated with those two types of grills are a buzzkill. Thankfully, your best option is an electric grill. But is electric grilling healthy?
Yes, electric grilling is comparatively healthy; as the name suggests, an electric grill runs on electricity and is much more convenient, portable, and user-friendly than traditional grills.
Food cooked on an electric grill is much healthier for many reasons. In this article, we explore those reasons and much more.
Is Electric Grilling Healthy?
Yes, Electric grilling has multiple health benefits if you use the right method and healthy ingredients to make your favorite recipe. I have explained all reason for electric grill being healthy in detail below.
Electric grilling reduces the amount of oil in your food
Oily food, especially trans fat and saturated fat, impacts your health badly. Oily food is one of the main contributors to obesity and heart disease. Electric grills help to reduce the amount of oil consumed in food.
Grilling is a cooking method that applies high heat to the surface of the food, melting the fat from the food. The food is prepared in its fat, and thus the need for extra oil is reduced.
No extra soot or carbon dioxide formation
A charcoal or propane grill produces a lot of smoke, which is highly unhealthy. An electric grill does not create smoke.
As known, smoke contains carbon dioxide, which is harmful to health. When inhaled carbon dioxide in high concentration, it can cause drowsiness, headaches, and shortness of breath. In the worst cases, it can cause mental disability, brain damage, and even coma.
However, such high carbon dioxide levels are produced when one uses a traditional charcoal grill indoors with low ventilation.
But an electric grill will have no such issues. You can use it indoors and not have your food filled with CO2. Besides, an electric grill does not produce soot.
Eliminates the risk of cancer
Often charring and burning of food at high temperature increases heterocyclic amines, which is one particular cancer-causing agent. Besides, when fat drips and combines with the flame, it produces another carcinogenic- polyaromatic hydrocarbons.
But these problems are minimum when using an electric grill. The food cooked on an electric grill doesn’t come in direct contact with the flame as in the case of charcoal or gas grills. Thus the food does not burn. Plus, an electric grill does not easily add carcinogen compounds to the food.
What is the Healthiest Type of Grill?
If you are using the right ingredients and techniques, grilling, in general, is a very healthy method of cooking. However, the type of grill you select will determine the nutritional value of your food.
As mentioned by seasoned barbeque specialists – concerning health, gas, charcoal, and electric grills are all similar. Of course, gas grilling is much cleaner than using a charcoal grill.
By far, electric grilling is the healthiest type of grilling. It’s the best substitute for charcoal and gas grills. Besides, an electric grill is your best option if you stay in an apartment where charcoal and gas grills are not allowed.
Which Is Better: A Gas or Electric Grill?
Electric grills are relatively new in the market. However, they are becoming extremely popular for their usability, portability, and health benefits. Though electric grills have many benefits and are much healthier, they do not offer the traditional experience of charcoal or gas grills.
As the name mentions, electric grills run on electricity, and you need to plug them into a power outlet to operate them. Alternatively, gas girls have a propane tank; you need to fill that to run a gas grill.
Gas grills with propane tanks are more portable than grills that run on gas lines. However, it can be dangerous if the tank leaks.
An electric grill, in that case, is much more user-friendly and convenient. They don’t produce a lot of smoke and soot, thus are best for use in apartments that don’t allow the use of charcoal or gas grills. Finally, electric grills are also available in a small countertop option, enhancing its convenience.
An electric grill outperforms charcoal and gas grills in many ways, the only drawback being that it does not impart that smokey taste to the foods.
Do Electric Grills Produce Carbon Monoxide?
No. This can only happen if you use a grill that runs on combustible fuel. An electric grill flows electricity through metal or ceramic heating elements to generate heat. In this case, nothing burns to create heat, like a gas or charcoal grill. Thus carbon monoxide is not produced.
Does Indoor Grilling Cause Cancer?
It’s a popular belief that indoor grilling causes cancer – this is partially true. Whether or not your food will be affected depends on the grill you are using and your immediate environment. For instance, if you use a charcoal or gas grill, the chance of developing cancer agents increases.
But generally, whether you are cooking indoors or outdoors, grilling meat risks cancer. Charring or burning of meat at a high temperature leads to the formation of HCAs. These cancer agents can damage an individual’s genes, which raises the chances of the stomach or colorectal cancer.
Using an electric grill, however, reduces the chances of HCA occurring significantly. As the meat does not get in direct contact with the heat, it does not char or burn, reducing the HCA level in the food.
Ways to Lower the Cancer Risk of Grilling
Many medical researchers have linked the cause of cancer with grilling. However, reducing the risks of producing any carcinogens during the cooking process is possible.
Below are the top five tips that will help you:
Research suggests that marinating for 30 minutes or more can reduce the formation of HCAs on meat and poultry. We are not exactly sure why this happens, but it is related to the shielding effect. According to Nigel Brockton, the VP of the American Institute for Cancer Research, “If you put a barrier of basically sugar and oil between the meat and the heat, then that is what becomes seared instead of the meat,”
Cut smaller pieces
It’s best to cut shorter pieces of meat, so they cook more quickly and have a shorter exposure span to the flames and high temperature. Cooking at a low temperature reduces the risk of exposing the meat to carcinogenic components.
Use herbs and spices
Dr. Brockton also recommends using phenolic spices like rea chili and pepper while grilling meat. Since these ingredients have antioxidant properties, they kill the carcinogenic components in the food.
If you tend to leave the meat on the heat and flame for several minutes, then change that habit immediately to keep cancer at bay. It’s important to flip the pieces regularly, so the two sides do not absorb or lose too much heat.
Many suggest cooking the meat in an oven stove or microwave before transferring it to the grill. This way, you limit the exposure time of the food on the grill.
So, after looking at the facts if you ask me Is electric grilling healthy? Well, there’s no doubt about it being healthy if we avoid fact less rumor.
Grilling is one of the top summer activities that you can enjoy. Though some concerns about grilling and the type of grill you are using, we have covered all you need to know to be safe in this article. We hope it enhances your next grilling experience.