Acrylamide; a neurotoxin in popcorns: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Rev Environ Health. 2022 Aug 12;38(4):647-653. doi: 10.1515/reveh-2022-0085. Print 2023 Dec 15.


Acrylamide is a known neurotoxic compound for humans. Foods that have high concentrations of acrylamide need to be identified. One of the food products containing acrylamide is popcorn. Popcorn is an important source of snacks for children, especially students. The presented study is a systematic review and meta-analysis of the level of acrylamide in popcorn. The search was done in different databases with the keywords; acrylamide, popcorn, popped corn. 27 articles were found by searching various databases. After initial screening and full text evaluation, 8 articles were selected for systematic review and 6 articles for meta-analysis. The amount of acrylamide in this product was in the range of 1,017.7-106 μg/kg. Microwaved corn contains lower amounts of acrylamide than other methods of preparation. The type of popcorn also had an effect on the amount of acrylamide with Meta-regression. It was found that sweet popcorn contains higher amounts of acrylamide. The overall value of acrylamide concentration in popcorns was calculated to be 459.6 ± 220.3 μg/kg. This amount is high and requires measures to reduce the amount of acrylamide.

Keywords: acrylamide; meta-analysis; meta-regression; popcorn; systematic review.

Publication types

  • Meta-Analysis
  • Systematic Review
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Acrylamide / analysis
  • Child
  • Food
  • Food Contamination* / analysis
  • Humans
  • Neurotoxins* / analysis
  • Zea mays


  • Neurotoxins
  • Acrylamide