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The way you pre­pare foods may have an im­pact on your risk of cancer. “There’s a pos­si­bil­ity that meat cooked at high tem­per­a­tures, such as grilling, can form po­ten­tial cancer-caus­ing com­pounds,” says Wis­dom-Gil­liam. “Poly­cyclic aro­matic hy­dro­car­bons [PAHs] are found in the smoke and ad­here to the meat.” And then there are het­e­ro­cyclic amines (HCAs), which form when meat pro­teins re­act to in­tense heat on the grill, she says. To get around this, mar­i­nate your meat ahead of cook­ing, which may stop it from char­ring, or pre­cook your meat so that it spends less time on the grill. Any type of mari­nade will help, but cit­rus mari­nades are par­tic­u­larly good be­cause they con­tain an­tiox­i­dants that may block those com­pounds from form­ing. Also, think be­yond red meat: Fish, chicken, veg­gies and fruit are all wor­thy con­sid­er­a­tions.

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