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The Health Issues of Skewered Grill Pork

Singaporeans love street foods. One of the favourite street foods of Singaporeans is skewered grilled pork (or chicken). There is nothing wrong with that if you do not consume it always but if you ingest it all the time, you should be aware of its health effects. Grilling has health issues and it is time that you know them.


In Thailand, the Pollution Control Department (PCD) agency has warned the street stall owners and the people who are buying skewered grill pork that there are health issues accompanying it. PCD made some research and it found out that the volatile organic compounds (VOC) from hot grills is between 168 & 441 parts/million.

The amount of VOC (168 & 441 parts/million) is not that high compared to smoke emitted by incense and exhaust fumes but there is an effect. If you are exposed to VOCs for a long period of time, it will affect your health eventually. You have to be aware of the risks of fumes while it is early. Here are some risks of VOCs that you should look out:


  • Eye irritation: The smoke indeed can irritate the eyes. Prolonged exposure to fumes of grill can irritate the eyes or worse it will result to more serious issues. Eyes are important so it should be taken care of. Do not let the fume or smoke take the best of your eyesight.
  • Respiratory problems: When you inhale fumes or smoke, there is no doubt that your lungs are affected. You will notice that when you inhale fumes, you have difficulties breathing. It will suffocate you and it can lead to death. If you have respiratory problems, it is important that you go to your doctors right away so it can be attended.
  • Cancer: If you are fond of skewered grilled pork (or chicken), you have to know that it can lead to cancer. When you grill the pork for a long time at high temperature, there is a chemical that is produced that can lead to cancer. Carcinogens will be produced. Your consuming of such will increase your risk of cancer over time.

The skewered grilled pork (or chicken) is a principal meal in Asian countries. Not all food stall owners and their consumers are aware of the risks accompanying skewered products. Stall owners are afraid because PCD might shut them because of the recently discovered health effects but PCD assured the owners that they will not shut their source of living. They will instead consult with PHM (Public Health Ministry) to seek for more solutions.


Fighting the Haze

Fighting the haze is not easy because you cannot physically hold it. It is so destructive that when you inhale it, you will become ill and unhealthy. Singapore is suffering from the haze and to think it is not our fault. It is the actions of the other country that brought discomfort to all of us. We are all aware of the increased burning in Riau, Sumatra.


NEA (National Environment Agency) and MOH (Ministry of Health) warned Singaporeans that there will be a prolonged haze. Dr. Balakrishnan posted on February 11, 2014 about the prolonged haze. The comments of the minister came the same day APRIL (Asia Pacific Resources International Limited) warned about the lengthy haze season. APRIL is the second largest paper and pulp maker here in Asia.

If you remember, the worse bout with haze was last June 2013 where the PSI (Pollutant Standards Index) level hit 401. That was alarming. It caused many establishments to close for the fear of the effects. Since haze is threatening the country again, it is useful if people review the don’ts during haze. Here are some:

  1. Stay Indoors. It is important that you stay indoors especially if you are advised. Do not push things because it will only harm you. Do not mind work because your life is more important.
  2. Monitor the PSI. You should continuously monitor the bulletin or advisory of NEA about the PSI level. Every time you go out, make sure that you check the levels.
  3. Do Not Open Your Windows. If haze is present, it is crucial not to open your windows. If you see any dents in your windows and doors, make sure to seal it so no haze can enter your house. Use air conditioners instead.
  4. Use Air Purifiers. You have to make sure to remove the pollutants and other particles circulating around your house. You can do this by purchasing air purifier of ionizers.
  5. Drink Plenty of Water. If you are afraid of absorbing any toxins, you should drink lots of water. When you drink lots of water, your body will flush out the toxins.
  6. Eat Well. You have to stay healthy to fight the disease that comes along with haze. You have to strengthen your immunity. You need to eat Vitamin C, Vitamin E and Omega 3 rich foods.
  7. Cover Your Nose. Do not go outside if haze is present but if it can’t be helped, you have to cover your nose with masks. Do not forget your masks.

The air we breathe should be clean and safe. If it carries something that can threaten the lives of people with respiratory and heart diseases, everyone should join together to stop the haze.


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