Doctor's Note

Please feel free to post any ask-the-doctor type questions here in the comments section and I’d be happy to try to answer them. And check out the other videos on beverages. Also, there are 1,686 other subjects covered in the rest of my videos--please feel free to explore them as well!

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  • Michael Greger M.D.

    Please feel free to post any ask-the-doctor type questions here in the comments section and I’d be happy to try to answer them. And check out the other videos on beverages. Also, there are 1,449 other subjects covered in the rest of my videos–please feel free to explore them as well!

  • cmarble

    Is the benzene coming from the natural components of the carrots in the juice or is it from an additional additive to the juice. In the study did they use organic carrot bottled juice or was it conventional?
    If there is natural componenet in carrots that converts to benzene when cooked, than does it also possibly apply to cooking carrots?

    • Toxins

      Hello cmarble!
      To answer your question about the benzene. It was not the additives + heat that caused the benzene it was the makeup of the carrot themselves. Thus, it wouldn’t matter whether they were conventional or organic. To quote the study, “This study shows that carrot juice contains substances such as beta-carotene, phenylalanine or terpenes that may act as precursors for benzene formation during food processing.”
      In reality, not enough studies have been done on just the carrots, its been on carrot juice. Keep in mind that to make carrot juice you need A LOT of carrots so although it seems reasonable to think cooking carrots might produce benzene, it would be a small, insignificant amount. In a separate study in Germany regarding benzene in carrot juice,”The heating temperature was studied at four levels (unheated, 100, 125 and 150C) and the heating time was varied at three levels (30, 60 and 120 min)” In this study, they were organic. Thus, one can assume longer heating means more benzene. http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/pdf/10.1080/02652030802036230
      Hope this helps!

  • Yair

    Dr. Gregor

    Your site is great. I see it as the example for how doctors of one specialty can keep up with a different speciality. In Caldwell Esselstyn’s book “Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease, he writes of a compound called asymmetric dimethyl arginine ADMA, which prevents arginine from being a substrate for NO synthase. He further speaks of a different enzyme, dimethyl arginine dimethyl amino hydrolase (DADAH)which readily breaks up the ADMA, allowing NO synthase to produce NO from arginine. He states that by products from a meat eating diet inhibit DADAH and gives this as a reason that plant based eaters have less heart disease than meat eaters with equal cholesterol levels.Can you explain this, elaborate on it or provide some references? Thanks.