Roast potatoes, chips, toast cancerous - study

ROAST potatoes, home made chips and toast have been revealed as the latest foods that can increase your risk of cancer - a new study has found.

The news comes on the back of last month's revelation that bacon and processed red meats increase the risk of contracting cancer.

The study conducted by the British Government's food standards watchdog, The Food Standards Agency.

It revealed the crispier potatoes or toast are cooked, the higher the level of the cancer causing chemical acrylamide.

Researchers found roast potatoes and chips should be cooked to 'a light golden colour', while toast should be cooked to 'the lightest acceptable colour'.

Acrylamide forms because of a reaction between amino acids, sugar and water found within bread and potatoes when the foods are cooked above 120 degrees celsius.

When researchers cooked toast the palest pieces contained 19 times less acrylamide than the crispiest toast - nine micrograms compared to 167 micrograms.

Food Standards Agency Chief Scientific Advisor, Professor Guy Poppy said 'the risk assessment indicates that at the levels we are exposed to from food, acrylamide could be increasing the risk of cancer.'

"We do not advise people to stop eating particular foods but ... when making chips at home, they are cooked to a light golden colour," he said.

Cooking potatoes safely

Parboil your potatoes before roasting which reduces the free sugars that generate acrylamide.

Store your potatoes in a cupboard, not the fridge, which can increase the amount of sugar and sweetness, but also increases the level of acrylamide.

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