The truth about leftovers in the refrigerator cause cancer

"When reheating leftovers in the refrigerator, it is not possible to kill all harmful microorganisms and if they are used, there is a high risk of food poisoning" - Head of Research, Development, and Technology Transfer Department - Institute of Safety food - Dr. Lam Van Man said. So what is the truth about leftovers in the refrigerator causing cancer? Let's find out with the tips below!


In this day and age, refrigerators have helped housewives a lot in storing food, saving money and a lot of time. However, housewives are now too dependent on the family’s “multipurpose” refrigerator, which can be harmful.

Any leftovers should be put in the fridge to warm up the next day and eat again. Most people think that the refrigerator is to store food so that cooked food will not survive because the temperature is too low. But few people think that leaving leftovers in the refrigerator and reheating to eat again will be harmful to health.

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Most people keep leftovers in the fridge

Dr. Lam Van Man, Head of Research, Development and Technology Transfer Department – Institute of Food Safety, pointed out why it is not advisable to reheat food stored in the refrigerator (?) and how to store leftovers in the refrigerator. Cold is not harmful to health.

Do not reheat leftovers in the refrigerator

Dr. Man said: “It is not advisable to store leftovers in the refrigerator to reheat and eat the next day. Because in leftovers there are many harmful microorganisms. When you put leftovers in the fridge, those microorganisms just stop working. Therefore, taking the food out and reheating it does not kill all these bacteria, and people who eat it are at high risk of food poisoning.”

Tiến sĩ Lâm Văn Mân

Dr. Lam Van Man

In addition, Dr. Man added, from the very beginning, when seeing that the amount of cooked food is not used up, housewives should take out a certain amount, put it in boxes to cool, then close the lid and put it in the refrigerator. . When you need to eat, take it out and heat it up. This will ensure food safety and human health.

Do reheating leftovers cause cancer?

There is much information that reheated leftovers will be attacked by bacteria and create nitrite compounds. At that time, the temperature causes this amount of nitrite to increase dramatically. In particular, nitrite can cause food poisoning, if accumulated for a long time, it can cause liver, kidney, and stomach cancer.

As recently, there is information that a mother has cancer because of many years of eating leftovers in the refrigerator. However, Dr. Lam Van Man affirmed, that currently there is no scientific evidence to prove that reheated leftovers pose a cancer risk.

“Whether nitrite is a cause of cancer or not has not been agreed upon by the scientific community. It is known that Nitrate is available in food, when eaten under the action of digestive enzymes or microorganisms, it will convert into Nitrite in the form of healthy Nitric Oxide or Nitrosamines – not good for health, “said Dr. conversion to nitrite.

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Leftovers can cause cancer

Dr. further explained, that in meat processing, nitrite is added with the purpose of keeping the meat pink and red, and it is found that people who eat a lot of processed meat have a high risk of cancer, and nitrite is attributed to the cause. core. However, research results show that in vegetables and fruits the nitrate content is much higher than in meat – and vegetables have been proven to be good for health.

“When is nitrite toxic? That is when nitrite is at high temperature in the presence of amino acids like when grilling meat, it will turn into toxic nitrosamines, which are not good for health, “said Dr. Lam.

Store food in the refrigerator properly

Một số thực phẩm gây hại khi bảo quản trong tủ lạnh

Some foods are harmful when stored in the refrigerator

The doctor advises housewives to safely store food in the refrigerator in the following ways:

– Food after being cooked should be put in the refrigerator and stored within 2 hours, if left out for more than two hours, it should not be stored in the refrigerator.

Food when stored in the refrigerator should be divided into sufficient quantities for one use. When taking food out of the refrigerator, it should be processed immediately, not taken out, and then put into storage again.

– Do not put food in the refrigerator while it is still hot, as it can increase the temperature of the refrigerator and cause other foods to heat up.

Cooked foods stored in the refrigerator should also be used within 3 days.