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(or acrylic amide) is a chemical compound with the chemical formulaC3H5NO.
It is a white, odorless crystalline solid. Its melting point is 358 K, its molar mass is 71.08 g/mol, and its density is 1.13 g/cm3.

Acrylamide forms naturally in many plant-based, high-carbohydrate foods when they are heated. Acrylamide was first discovered to be present in food by the Swedish National Authority in 2002. However, we now know that acrylic in foods is not new. It has been present in the human diet for as long as people have been baking, grilling, roasting, toasting or frying food.
Acrylamide is present in many different foods regularly consumed around the world. For example, it is found in 40 percent of the calories consumed in the average American diet – in foods ranging literally from soup to nuts, and including baked and fried potatoes, cereals, coffee, crackers, olives, bread, asparagus, prune juice, dried fruit and many others. It is produced by baking, grilling, roasting or frying foods, irrespective of whether the food is made at home, in a restaurant or in a commercial setting. This widespread presence makes it highly unlikely that it can be completely eliminated from diets.
However, while no health authority has recommended consumers change their eating behavior because of acrylamide, there are prudent measures to reduce acrylamide formation in many products. Food manufacturers and restaurants continue to explore and implement these solutions. Similarly, easy-to-follow advice exists for those consumers who wish to reduce the formation of acrylamide in home cooking.
Acrylamide is a chemical that can form in some foods during high-temperature cooking processes, such as frying, roasting, and baking. Acrylamide in food forms from sugars and an amino acid that are naturally present in food; it does not come from food packaging or the environment.
Acrylamide is produced industrially for use in products such as plastics, grouts, water treatment products, and cosmetics. Acrylamide is also found in cigarette smoke.
Acrylamide caused cancer in animals in studies where animals were exposed to acrylamide at very high doses. Acrylamide causes nerve damage in people exposed to very high levels at work. FDA has not yet determined the exact public health impact, if any, of acrylamide from the much lower levels found in foods. FDA is conducting research studies to determine whether acrylamide in food is a potential risk to human health.
FDA's best advice for acrylamide and eating is that consumers adopt a healthy eating plan, consistent with the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, that emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and fat-free or low-fat milk and milk products; includes lean meats, poultry, fish, beans, eggs, and nuts; and is low in saturated fats, transfats, cholesterol, salt (sodium) and added sugars.
FDA has initiated a broad range of activities on acrylamide since the discovery of acrylamide in food in April 2002. FDA accomplishments include the following (see [[/Food/FoodSafety/FoodContaminantsAdulteration/ChemicalContaminants/Acrylamide/default.htm|Acrylamide in Food]]4):
  • Developed an Action Plan outlining FDA’s goals and planned activities on acrylamide in food.
  • Convened two meetings of FDA’s Food Advisory Committee/Subcommittee for input on FDA’s acrylamide program.
  • Developed a sensitive method for measuring acrylamide in food and posted the method on FDA’s website.
  • Analyzed and posted acrylamide testing results for approximately 2600 food samples.
  • Launched a comprehensive research program to study acrylamide toxicology.
  • Published peer-reviewed research on acrylamide toxicology and detection methods.
  • Conducted research on ways to reduce acrylamide in food.
  • Prepared assessments of consumer exposure to acrylamide.The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regulates acrylamide in drinking water. The EPA established an acceptable level of acrylamide exposure, set low enough to account for any uncertainty in the data relating acrylamide to cancer and neurotoxic effects. The U.S. FDA regulates the amount of residual acrylamide in a variety of materials that come in contact with food, but there are currently no guidelines governing the presence of acrylamide in food itself.
    Acrylamide is known to cause cancer in animals. Also, certain doses of acrylamide are toxic to the nervous system of both animals and humans.
    In April 2002 the Swedish National Food Authority reported the presence of elevated levels of acrylamide in certain types of food processed at high temperatures. Since then, acrylamide has been found in a range of cooked and heat-processed foods in other countries, including The Netherlands, Norway, Switzerland, the United Kingdom and the United States.
    Previous concerns about acrylamide were focused on workers using acrylamide in their jobs, and cigarette smoking.

Acrylamide is a chemical that can form in some foods during high-temperature cooking processes, such as frying, roasting, and baking. Acrylamide in food forms from sugars and an amino acid that are naturally present in food; it does not come from food packaging or the environment. It is produced industrially for use in products such as plastics, grouts, water treatment products, and cosmetics. Acrylamide is also found in cigarette smoke. It has probably always been present in cooked foods. However, acrylamide was first detected in certain foods in April 2002.

Laboratory use:
Polyacrylamide was first used in a laboratory setting in the early 1950s. In 1959, two groups independently published on the use of polyacrylamide gel electrophoresis to separate charged molecules. The technique is widely accepted today, and remains a common protocol in molecular biology labs. Acrylamide has many other uses in molecular biology laboratories, including the use of linear polyacrylamide (LPA) as a carrier, which aids in the precipitation of small amounts of DNA. Many laboratory supply companies sell LPA for this use.

Industrial use:
Acrylamide is produced industrially for use in products such as plastics, grouts, water treatment products, and cosmetics. Acrylamide is also found in cigarette smoke.

Found in Uncooked Foods: Acrylamide has been found in black olives, prunes, and dried pears.

Natural State
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Health Risks:
Exposure can result in sweating, urinary incontinence, nausea, myalgia, speech disorder, numbness, paresthesia, weakened legs and hands, and damage to reproductive glands. There is also evidence showing that being exposed to acrylamide may result in cancer. Acrylamide caused cancer in animals in studies where animals were exposed to acrylamide at very high doses.

If eaten too much of a food with this on it, it can cause diabetes and some clogging of the arteries. acrylamide makes foods very risky for people to eat and causes several health risks while being consumed. Acrylamide causes nerve damage in people exposed to very high levels at work. FDA is conducting research studies to determine whether acrylamide in food is a potential risk to human health.

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Acrylamide, which is still being investigated by scientists, is a cooking by-product associated with frying, baking, roasting or toasting foods at very high temperatures, usually greater than 120c.


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