Nov 12, 2009

Special Interest At Work

Ordering grilled chicken or cooking it home may not be as healthy as you think.  At least that is what the Cancer Project, a Washington D.C.-based group believes.  They sponsored a class-action lawsuit in Connecticut against McDonald's, Burger King and Friendly's alleging that the restaurant chains failed to warn consumers about a dangerous carcinogen in grilled chicken.

The group says that it conducted independent laboratory tests that showed grilling chicken at high temperatures produces PhIP, one of the group of carcinogenic compounds called heterocyclic amines (HCA), which even when consumed in small amounts increase the risk of getting cancer.  And consumers deserve to know that, Patrick Sullivan, spokesman for the Cancer Project, said in a phone interview.

PhIP has been on the California governor's list of cancer-causing chemicals for more than a decade, and the federal government added HCAs to its list of carcinogens in 2005. True, PhIP gets produced even when you grill at home, but for restaurant chains such KFC, promoting the dish as a healthy alternative is highly deceptive, Sullivan said.

Cancer Project, which promotes a healthful, plant-based diet and is an affiliate of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, began its crusade against the chains last year by suing a bunch of restaurants in California. Following the suit, Burger King settled and agreed to warn customers about the presence of PhIP. The rest, led by mighty McD's, held its ground. The case was eventually dismissed by a judge who said that federal law governing certain chicken products prohibit California from imposing its own PhIP standards. The group is appealing that ruling.

So, do not breathe, do not eat, and do not move, and you will be safe from all the carcinogen producing things out there.  Me, if I am going own, I am going down with ugly oolies.


  1. Hi Ken,
    Oh, great. Order chicken instead of beef because it's "healthier" and now even that turns out to be deadly. Maybe we should all just be cryogenically frozen at birth ... life would be so much safer that way. Or maybe not, if what happened to Ted Williams' head is any indication.


    Whoosh, I feel better now.
    Off to tell the rest of the folks that the sky is falling.

  3. Going to go out with a bang, huh? Yikes!

  4. People really need to get with it. Someone needs to explain that there are things we cannot see, that are much more dangerous than grilled chicken. If I were going to be concerned about something killing me, grilled chicken is not going to be very high on the list.

    P.S. This whole things smells of overly litigious attorneys, not cancerous chicken.


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