Call me a hypocrite, but I just bought another microwave oven. I don’t trust them, don’t think they’re entirely safe, but we moved and we have a new kitchen … I was drawn in by the fact that it’s also a needed convection oven. Because it’s there, it’s being used again, and I’m not too happy that we’re so lazy and might be compromising our health.
Researching microwave ovens a few years ago made me remove it from the kitchen and the family survived. I bought a mini-pan for the stove and it was very easy to use for single items, and swipe it clean immediately. A small toaster oven helped warm some items without using the large oven. Just removing frozen things the night before took care of the need to use it for defrosting.
My student-children were the hardest sell on the idea of no microwaves, in fact I think I lost that battle, because too many lunches they pack these days need zapping. Hopefully, they’ll moved into more wraps and sandwiches, fruit and bars than things that need to be nuked. I was shocked, however, to find that their lunch room ovens at the time were consistently covered with food splatters inside!
Hard to believe, but these untidy food splatters are actually one of the most dangerous things about microwave ovens. The splatters attract the microwaves, which leads to poor cooking and leakage if the food bits are around the seal of the door.
The FDA in the U.S. has a page on microwaves under “radiation-emitting products,” (which should get anyone’s attention) … but they simply say that the research isn’t really in on “how they might affect the human body.” Not terribly reassuring, eh?
I’m not sure if there’s a “microwave oven lobbying group” out there, but it seems as if research is taking longer than necessary.
Their clearest warning is about “super-heated water,” which is water that is heated past its boiling point and it doesn’t appear to be boiling at all. If you pick up the cup or add something to it, it could explode.
Dr. Mercola lists some health issues that might be connected with high levels of microwave radiation as:
- headaches and dizziness
- swollen lymph nodes and a weakened immune system
- impaired cognition
- depression and irritability
- nausea and appetite loss
- vision and eye problems – cataracts
- frequent urination and extreme thirst
He also disputes the idea that nuked vegetables are better for us. In fact, he makes a
convincing case that the opposite is true. Under the section, “Microwaving Also Zaps the Nutrients Right Out of Your Food,” he lists research that has been done.
All I know is that I shudder when I see a person putting a plastic baby bottle, sometimes with the nipple on it, in the microwave to warm. Oh my gosh – the potential for a toxic chemical soup given to a small child!!! It’d be so easy to put the bottle in the sink in a bowl of hot water like people did for years, and there’d be much less chance of getting the milk too hot.
In any event, I guess I’m going to have to re-educate my family to move away from microwaving – if any of the information can be believed – it’s too much of a risk and not worth the gamble. At least we can still use the convection part of the giant thing we have mounted above our stove.
Let me know if you try to cut back on your microwave use, we could start a support group 🙂