Beta-carboline harmane is a neurotoxin present in some foods that are probably included in your daily diet. What is interesting about this toxin is the fact that in only 5 minutes after ingesting it, the toxin is already in your blood! The digestion is not near finished, but beta-carboline harmane is already causing you harm.
Beta-caroline harmane damages the brain, leading to essential tremor and brain deterioration. Most common symptoms of brain deterioration are memory problems, headaches, confusion and nausea. But severe brain damage can lead to debilitating problems and physical disabilities.
Essential tremor is another neurological disorder that can be caused by this toxin. This disorder causes involuntary rhythmic shake and it is experienced by 4% of adults over 40 and 20% of adults who are over 90 years old. All of us have an involuntary tremor, but this is usually too small to be noticed. The movements caused by essential tremor are not unnoticeable, and they cannot be controlled. Hands and arms are usually the most affected parts of the body. This has a great impact on a daily routine, as long as the shaking can be so severe that a person may not able to drink a glass of water by himself anymore.
A long exposure to beta-carboline harmane may also lead to difficulties in walking or moving, extreme mental and physical fatigue or even more serious problems, such as dementia, Alzheimer’s and cancer.
Scientific research shows that there is an undeniable correlation between the dietary intake of the neurotoxin and the essential tremor. People with essential tremor have a much higher level of the toxin in their blood. In other words, the tremor is getting more and more severe as far as the level of beta-carboline harmane present in the blood is getting higher.
What are the foods that contain beta-carboline harmane?
A study made in 2007 shows that high amounts of the neurotoxin are present in all sorts of meat, especially in cooked meat. Even though beta-carboline harmane was also found in pork, beef and fish, the most worrying amounts of toxins were found in chicken meat.
Another study made at Columbia University concerning products that may cause cancer reveals that participants who ate more meat had an increased level of the toxin in their blood. What is alarming is that the beta-carboline harmane level got to 21 percent, while smoking increased the level of carcinogenic substances only by 14 percent. From this perspective, eating cooked meat, especially chicken, is more dangerous that smoking.
It is interesting that amounts of beta-carboline harmane were not found only in cooked meat, but also in heated plants. In this category, you can include roasted coffee beans and tobacco. Therefore, the advice is to avoid these too, and if you cannot live without coffee, avoid the excesses.
A healthy alternative
Most people are aware of the high amount of proteins contained in meat and they eat it for that reason. But you can also find another trustable source of protein in eggs, nuts, seeds, and vegetables. Including them into your diet, you won’t risk your brain’s health.