Everything You Need to Know about Cancer and French Fries

Everything You Need to Know about Cancer and French Fries

By now, you’ve probably come across an article on your social feed about how French fries or fried potatoes in general are causing cancer. If not, congrats. The blissfully ignorant state of not knowing about the potential harm of over consuming fried potatoes means your life is probably less anxiety-ridden than my own (oh, and sorry for bursting that bubble of cozy comfort with this post. Feel free to stop reading right now if you’d like).

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Anyways, I’ve gotten a lot of Qs about this topic, so I thought I’d address it here. As a potato-finatic and food tox and food safety enthusiast, this issue hits close to home and is one I wanted to examine for myself. This topic actually came up in food tox before I saw it trending all over social media, so I was happy to have a solid grip on the science before all the media hype surrounding it.

So, let’s dive into the nitty starchy gritty: potatoes, French fries, and acrylamide: what you need to know about the risks, and how to minimize your own.

Ps: I had been pausing blogging, not by choice, but out of circumstance, as when I tried to transfer hosting sites, my site was kind of MIA from the internet for over a week…talk about anxiety-inducing. Oy.

Anyways, now that I’ve got my site back, I’m going to work with a different company on transferring the site (because I’ve got bigger and better things planned) and in the meantime keep chugging along here.

So what’s the risk? Are my potatoes and grains giving me cancer?

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Acrylamide does not appear to be of concern in raw foods themselves; it seems to be formed when certain starchy foods are cooked at high temps.

So the risk does not lie necessarily in the potatoes or grains per se, so don’t think you have to instantly ban potatoes from your household. The risk is actually from the acrylamide that develops upon high heat cooking of the potatoes (usually above 250°F).

What is acrylamide?

Easy Baked Cripsy Sweet Potato Wedges with Almond Butter

Acrylamide is a chemical compound found in a lot of industrial production. It’s also found in cigarette smoke. It’s also in many foods, including canned black olives, potato chips, French fries, dark browned toast, coffee, prune juice, and some breakfast cereals.

Acrylamide can also form in some foods as a result of the amino acid asparagine being heated to high temperatures in the presence of certain sugars. This is what happens when potatoes are fried in hot oil. Potatoes happen to have high levels of asparagine, hence the recent concern about french fries, acrylamide and cancer.

Baking and roasting can also lead to acrylamide formation. Generally speaking, the longer and hotter the cooking method, the more acrylamide is likely to form. Boiling and steaming do not typically lead to acrylamide formation.

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An Update on the Future of this Site

An Update on the Future of this Site

Helllooooo my friends! How’ve you been? I feel like a terrible person for going MIA yet again for a month. I was in wifi/reception-less Alaska for 9-10 days, then working on a host transfer, which got messed up multiple times. Oof. I couldn’t even access my page for well over a week. Talk about stressful!

But I’m back and wanted to address a few things. First, you may notice things here look a tiny bit different. That’s on purpose. And know that this design/feel is temporary. I’m working with a new company to transfer to a bigger, badder hosting site and make the website much more user-friendly because…

I want to expand this space. More than recipes/random life updates/recaps/musings. I want it to be a reliable, approaching resource for all things health, nutrition, climate change, sustainability, and vegan lifestyle. With tidbits of my own life tossed in, of course.

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The truth is I started this blog a long time ago. I’ve learned and grown so much since then both in my knowledge of nutrition/sustainability/cooking, AND in my knowledge of online content creation.

And I haven’t been proud of some of the stuff on the site. I want to be proud of every.single.thing. I post. That means better recipes, more responsible science-based posts, and more of my life/emotions. I want to leave it all out on the table for you guys. I love connecting with others via the internet, so let’s be friends :-)/

Videos will also be launching soon, so stay tuned for that.

Nutella-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies Vegan

As always, if you have any questions, ideas, or requests, please leave a comment below or HMU on Insta. I LOVE hearing from you.

Stay #blessed fam~

-Katherine

 

 

Some Vegan Memorial Day Recipes

Some Vegan Memorial Day Recipes

Happy Memorial Day! It occurred to me recently that I’ve never done a recipe round-up post, so I thought I’d take this holiday opportunity to do one. So here are some Vegan Memorial Day Recipes to bring to a BBQ!

Also, dog parents, be sure to watch your little ones during fire works if they aren’t fanss of them (Millie flips out and tries to hide).

Let me know if you try any of these Vegan Memorial Day recipes and let me know whatcha thing! HMU on insta or twitter.

1. Black Rice Beet Veggie Burgers

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With rich umami flavors from black rice, sweetened up with beets, these veggie burgers are an eye-catching main dish.

2. Crispy Sweet Potato Fries

Delicious Easy Baked Cripsy Sweet Potato Wedges with Almond Butter

My favorite side ever. Serve with guac, hummus, or almond butter!

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Vegan Nutella Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

Vegan Nutella Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

You read that right. They’re here: gooey, glutinous, Vegan Nutella Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies. Are you ready for this? *cue Tswift song*Delicious Vegan Nutella-Stuffed Chocolate Chip Cookies

I made these a couple of weeks ago shortly after finals had ended. I needed a mini baking project to help me unwind from the perils of final stress.

Vegan Cookie Dough Scoop

I had had a hankering to make Nutella Stuffed Chocolate Chip cookies after seeing this video while stalking Skyler (aka @diningwithskyler) on Facebook. Except obviously, I wanted to make them vegan.

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Random Eats + Random Thoughts

Random Eats + Random Thoughts

Hey friends. Happy Thursday.  Thought I would pop in and share some random thoughts and eats lately. I love reading these posts and like writing them too. I hope that by sharing some random snacks and meals I may inspire some yumminess sin your life, should you be looking for new food ideas! At the end, I share a few random thoughts.

Here we go.

Random Eats:

Chex + Almond Milk + a sprinkle of sugar

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I love cereal. I go through phases where I’ll eat it daily. These phases tend to be in the summer, with cream-of-wheat and oatmeal phases being more prevalent in the winter/fall months.

Right now I’m on another daily cereal kick. Never in the morning, but always at night as a bedtime snack. With lots of almond milk + a sprinkle of each cinnamon and sugar. So good. Cool, creamy, and crunchy and refreshing. Mmmm.

Also, shout out to toxicology for ruining all rice-based foods for me. I now consume each bowl of Chex cereal cognizant of its arsenic intake and enjoy the crunchy squares with a side dose of paranoia.

Tony’s Chocolate

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So good!! Where has this been all my life?! I also love that the brand supports fair labor practices, as many chocolate companies support slave trade labor.

You can get it on Amazon if you can’t find it nearby!

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Banachos (Banana Nachos)

Banachos (Banana Nachos)

Sometimes I think I could live off of potatoes and bananas and things to dip them in. Seriously. I eat both pretty much every day and never tire of them. The best.

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One of my favorite ways to eat bananas is sliced up, topped with cinnamon, hemp hearts, oodles of nut butter, and/or granola. My sister coined this creation “banachos” and the name just stuck (at least in our circle).

Delicious Banachos: Banana nachos

This is less of a recipe and more of an idea. I want you to make banachos with whatever you like to eat bananas with.

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Easy Everything Bagel Fries

Easy Everything Bagel Fries

HECK YEAH it’s another potato post. Potatoes just happen to be my favorite food, and ever since it’s debut, I’ve been obsessed with Trader Joe’s Everything But the Bagel seasoning salt. Hence, today I share with you these easy oven-baked everything bagel fries.

Easy Baked Everything Bagel Fries

These came about on a Thursday evening as I was trying to use up the last 2 potatoes in a 5-pound bag I had purchased Sunday. A quick math calculation made me realize I average eating about a potato a day. I’m more than okay with this statistic.

Easy Baked Everything Bagel Fries

Anyways, I was texting with my dear friend Caty about her recent appreciation of Everything But the Bagel Seasoning Salt, and suddenly, my own craving for the stuff set in. Fresh out of avocado (my go-to for an Everything But the Bagel Seasoning Salt), I decided to wedge up my taters and make everything bagel fries in the oven.

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The Best Vegan Restaurants in NYC (according to my Tastebuds)

The Best Vegan Restaurants in NYC (according to my Tastebuds)

Hello! I get a lot of requests for recommendations for what to do and eat in New York City, so I thought I’d make a list of all of the best vegan restaurants in NYC (according to my tastebuds and experiences, at least) and keep them all in one place as a reference for anyone who may be curious!

This list is by no means exhaustive; please note I have always lived in the city as a student and have limited funds and time to eat out, but I do have many more places on my to-eat list (noted at the bottom), and I will update as I go!

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I was originally going to list all my favorite eats and activities in one place, but the eats portion ended up getting to be much longer than expected, so I decided to break up the posts. Keep an eye on for a post on my favorite activities in the city, coming soon!

Below you’ll find my favorite vegan-friendly eats in the city. Now grab your Metro card, we’re goin’ to New York City!

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Concussion Confessional: What I Learned From Concussion Recovery

Hello friends! Wow. It. has. been. a. minute. But I promise I have a valid reason for my absence, and it was related to my health. Specifically, this spring, I had not one, but TWO concussions within a 3 week period, which greatly limited my allotted/tolerable screen use time, and I had to be selective as to what I used my computer time for.

And as much as I love blogging and intend to blog consistently from hereon out, it fell to the wayside when I could only be on the comp a few hours per day, and computer-dependent school deadlines cluttered my calendar for several months.

Anyways, I wanted to talk about why I’ve been gone and to share my experience with having multiple concussions.I didn’t tell everyone I knew I was going through concussion recovery, mostly because I really didn’t want people to feel sorry for me. While I was going through all this, I felt really alone, scared, and quite sad.

I am hoping sharing my experience will help at least one other person going through concussion recovery to feel some sort of relateablity, and hopefully, a bit of hope.

So buckle in, here’s the story:

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Pasta with Charred Cherry Tomatoes, Broccolini and Vegan Parmesan

Pasta with Charred Cherry Tomatoes, Broccolini and Vegan Parmesan

Pastaaaaa. I have been craving pasta for quite some time now. I don’t know why. Probably because carbs = love.

Vegan Pasta with Brocollini Charred & Tomatoes Parmesan

Pasta has always been one of my favorite foods. I grew up with an Italian grandma and her penne arrabiata with charred peppers was the best.thing.ever. It has ruined almost all other pastas I’ve had since. Nothing like what Oma cooked up. Somewhere I have her recipe for her sauce. I can never make it quite like she did though…must be that Italian grandma magic.

I decided to make some pasta with some leftover veggies I got to take home from an event. I roasted up some cauliflower, broccolini, and tomatoes on Friday, and while I was eating them, the deliciousness of the roasted tomatoes just called for pasta.

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I was too lazy and hungry to make it at the time, but today I cooked up some whole wheat noodles, paired it with steamed broccoli, a bit of olive oil and lemon juice, salt & pepper, a bunch of Vegan Hemp Parmesan, and the real MVP, the charred tomatoes.

Super simple, very flavorful, and far from over-complicated. The way Italian-inspired food should be, as far as I’m concerned.

Vegan Pasta Brocollini with Charred Tomatoes Parmesan

Let’s talk pasta for a minute, shall we? At some point society demonized the glorious stuff. The thing is, there is nothing inherently significantly worse about pasta than many other forms of carbohydrates, especially when it’s whole grain.

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