For most users, microwaves are so mysterious. As such, a variety of myths have taken root throughout the years regarding their assumed hazards and their use. Below is a brief post written on behalf of Sears outlining a few of these myths and misunderstandings.
It’s apparent the microwave is one household appliance we can’t seem to live without. By the last official count provided by the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, more than 90 percent of U.S. households possessed at least one. And that’s not even counting the millions of office kitchens in which the microwave is a staple.
Although microwaves have been in use for decades, confusion surrounding the safety and proper use of these appliances seem to persist. If you’re concerned about the use of microwaves as part of your day-to-day routine, please consider the following information:
- Standing too close to a microwave oven can give you cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, there is no evidence of a health risk — even from the small amounts of microwaves that could potentially leak from these appliances. The high levels of microwaves that cook foods are contained within the oven.
- Microwave popcorn gives you cancer. For the same reason as above, the answer to this question is no. The U.S. Department of Agriculture says that cooking with microwave ovens does not make food radioactive.
- Beware of microwaves if you have a pacemaker. Unless you or a loved one has an older pacemaker, this should not be a concern. Modern pacemakers are built to resist electrical activity outside of the device.
- Microwaved food loses its nutritional value. Face it. Once you cook raw food through any type of method — whether on the stove, in an oven or in a microwave oven — you lose some of its nutrients. However, studies are inconclusive as to how much nutrients are lost.
- Don’t boil a cup of water in the microwave. Paid heed to this advice. You could potentially get scalded by handling a ceramic cup of boiling water heated in the microwave. If the water is overheated, the boiling water can erupt violently as heat is released.
As with any other cooking appliance, always make sure to properly read instructions and safety tips before use.
Published in: Cooking