False myths about microwave cooking: the fake news to dispel about this appliance

Whether it is for cooking, heating or defrosting, everyone happens to use the microwave oven, a household appliance that is now a must in our kitchens. Is microwaving bad for your health? Do foods change flavor and lose properties? These are just some of the myths to dispel. Let's see them all.

By Cookist
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The microwave oven is an increasingly well-known and appreciated appliance that, over the years, has managed to change the way we cook. Incredibly fast, excellent for cooking, heating or defrosting, the microwave oven, unlike the traditional one, does not work by radiation or conduction, but by "magnetic fields" produced by microwaves capable of acting on the particles of water contained in food.

There are many mysteries and false myths that have always accompanied cooking in the microwave; there are those who say that microwave oven modifies the food, those who fear that the microwaves can move in the kitchen space and those who wonder if harmful radiation is produced during cooking. Truth or legend? Let's find out together.

 1. Do microwaves alter food?

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This is perhaps the biggest doubt – certainly the most common – and the answer is simply no, the microwaves do not alter foods, do not make them radioactive in any way and do not impoverish them from a nutritional point of view. If anything, the opposite is true; microwaving, as well as steaming, is one of the best ways to preserve the nutrients of food. Microwave cooking, in reality, does not differ much from boiling or steaming, because it takes place precisely through the overheating of the water particles present in food.

2. Do microwaves make food radioactive or carcinogenic?

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Absolutely not; electromagnetic fields develop in the microwave, not neutron fluxes. What does it mean? The waves act on the water present in food and the radiations produced are so "weak" that they cannot in any way affect or modify the cells of the food, making them carcinogenic. In short, do not worry; cooking in the microwave oven will not genetically modify your peppers and will not turn them into a potato flan.

3. Does the microwave oven interfere with other appliances?

Here is another false myth; microwave ovens do not impact the operation of other appliances in any way. Until recently, there were rumors that the microwave oven interfered with wireless networks, but this also turned out to be fake news.

4. Are the microwaves coming out of the oven?

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They are small waves of energy, not ghosts and no, they don't come out of your oven to wander undisturbed around the kitchen. When you open the microwave door, even if the cooking time has not finished, the waves simply stop and cannot "come out" of the oven in any way.

5. Can I use all types of containers?

If you do not have suitable containers for cooking in microwaves (you can easily find them) you can use glass, earthenware or ceramic containers. Never use aluminum or plastic containers that do not specify “microwave use”.

6. Can we use the microwave oven to defrost food?

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Yes, but even in this case you must follow simple rules because if it is true that it does not alter the nutritional values ​​of food, it is also true that the microwave oven is less effective in eliminating bacteria present in food; for example, once the product has been defrosted, you will have to eat it in a short time and do not refreeze it for any reason. And if you want to learn how to defrost correctly and safely, you can take a look at our simple guide.

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