Kebab, A Delicious Food, but Contaminated with Harmful Compounds: A Literature Review

Document Type : Review Article


1 Associated Professor, Department of Nutritional Sciences, School of Nutrition Sciences and Food Technology, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran

2 Assistant Professor, Department of Nutritional Sciences, School of Nutrition Sciences and Food Technology, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran

3 MSc of Nutrition, Department of Nutritional Sciences, School of Nutrition Sciences and Food Technology, Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences, Kermanshah, Iran

4 Professor, Department of Clinical Nutrition, School of Nutrition and Food Sciences, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, Iran


Background: Grilling is one of the most traditional methods of cooking food, especially meat, which leads to the production of polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and heterocyclic aromatic amines (HAAs). International Agency for Research on Cancer has mentioned most of these compound, particular Benzo[a]pyrene and Phenyl imidazo pyridine, as carcinogenic to humans. The amount of the PAHs and HAAs in Kebab completely depends on the grilling method. The current review aimed to provide evidence and interventions to reduce the production of the PAHs and HAAs during grilling.Methods: This literature review consisted of articles searched in national and international databases up to December 2020. The inclusion criteria were original studies comparing controllable factors in the concentration of Benzo[a]pyrene and Phenyl imidazo pyridine produced in the Kebab.Results: The results of the current review showed that the level of Benzo[a]pyrene and Phenyl imidazo pyridine produced in the Kebab completely depened on factors including grilling temperature and duration, type of fuel, distance from the heat source, condiments, and the amount of fat in the meat.Conclusion: Reducing of the PAHs and HAAs intake from Kebab can be achieved through reducing grilling temperature and durations, using gas instead of charcoal and wood, increasing the distance of meat from the fire, using condiments, using low-fat meats, and removing the skin from chicken.


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