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“Fried Food Controversy”

The best Southern dishes seem to be fried. But, some scientific studies are cautioning against too much fried food. A 2010 study found too much fried fish may contribute to the high rate of stroke in America’s “stroke belt.” Experts found, “People living in the stroke belt – including residents of North Carolina, South Carolina, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, Tennessee, Arkansas and Louisiana – were about 30 percent more likely to eat two or more servings of fried fish every week than those living in the rest of the country.” There is evidence that frying fish reduces their amount of omega-3 fatty acids and frying is also associated with an increase in the food’s fat and calorie content. A 2012 study, published in Annals of Neurology, has shown that older women who eat high amounts of the kind of fat found in fried foods and baked goods face a greater risk of stroke than women who eat lower fat diets. A 2019 study has shown that frequent consumption of fried foods, particularly fried chicken and fried fish/shellfish, was correlated with a higher risk of all cause and cardiovascular mortality in this study population. Total or individual consumption of fried food was not generally linked to cancer mortality. Total fried food consumption of at least one serving per day was associated with a modestly higher but not significant risk of cardiovascular mortality.

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