On Nutrition: Check Your Sources for Nutritional and Medical Information |

Dear Doctor. Blonz: I wanted to tell you how much I enjoyed your column on grilling food. When I was much younger, I used to grill with charcoal two or three times a week. That went on for at least 20 years. I attributed this to my development of colon cancer when I was 54. My good friend with a similar lifestyle had the same result. So after all that, you didn’t specifically mention the use of charcoal – any relevance? – D., by email

Dear D .: Thank you for your reference and I am sorry that you have colon cancer. Hope you realized it early on because that can make all the difference. We should all have routine checkups from the age of 45 or earlier, as agreed with our health care professionals. Colonoscopy, a critical screening method, is not a joyful experience, but trivial compared to the risks involved in avoiding it.

The main concern here is the formation of carcinogenic substances when fats fall on a hot surface and are transformed there. These evils can then be carried back and deposited on the food; This can occur with grills that use gas or charcoal, and it can also occur with roasting and frying. When cooking outdoors, care should be taken not to inhale smoke, especially that from grease stains. When cooking indoors, good ventilation should always be provided to prevent accidental inhalation of these nasty substances, including carbon monoxide. So it is important to have a sensor nearby.