Sunday, January 20, 2008

Microwave Cooking

Many people have and use microwave ovens to cook. Officially microwaves do no emit harmful radiation, like that of an X-ray, but they still emit some. They have also been proven to interfere with older pacemakers. I've always wondered how microwaves affect the food while it is cooking.

Using plastic containers in a microwave is not a good idea in my opinion. The plastics from used containers, like yogurt or margarine, will leach into food. I'm not an expert but I think heat added to anything usually changes it's properties and chemical composition.

Some studies have suggested that using the microwave to heat or cook a variety of foods reduces the nutritional benefits of some foods. It has been found to reduce flavonoids in broccoli, B12 vitamins in other foods and infection fighting qualities of frozen breast milk. Other studies have found that microwave cooking has no impact on health benefits of foods.

I'm not sure about the impact of microwaves. I have modified how I use it and how much I use it and if it wasn't there I don't think I would miss it. Just like anything else, studies will come out for and against. Everyone has to make their own judgment call.


Anonymous said...

My parents had one microwave for years, then it broke, so the bought another one. Then that one was fried due to overcooking popcorn. Since then, we haven't used a microwave. We use our toaster oven more. I must say, soup tastes better from the stove, My bread is always nice and crispy, not soggy, and I don't ever want to use one again! Took a little time to get used to waiting for food to cook again but it was worth it.

Stil said...

Too many studies have shown that micrwaves afect the vitamin and phytonutrient (but not minerals) content in heated foods for me to ignore. I avoid microwaved food if I can help it and don't plan to replace my (never used) oven when it breaks.

Great blog btw.