Microwave Ovens – Hazards, Precautions and Safety Measures

We use microwaves for reheating, heating water for tea, sometimes, popcorn, rice, baked potatoes, melting chocolate, softening butter, margarine, or cream cheese, frozen dinners or other things (chicken nuggets or patties), cooking frozen veggies for dinner, and making instant oatmeal for breakfast, this list doesn’t end here, we have found shortcuts for everything using ovens in place of stoves is getting popular and why not this method is even more easy and quick and that too without much mess…I would be lost without my microwave! But this is only one side story, despite the fact that we love using microwaves the hazards of using microwaves must also be in out knowledge.

Microwaves, like visible light, are a part of the electromagnetic radiation spectrum. They are extremely high frequency radio waves. As the frequency of radiation increases, its wavelength decreases, so very high frequencies correspond to very short wavelengths; hence the name microwaves. Infrared radiation, ultraviolet light and X-rays are also electromagnetic radiations, but have even shorter wavelengths than microwaves.

Microwaves may either be reflected, transmitted or absorbed by matter in their path. Metallic materials totally reflect microwaves. Most non-metallic materials such as glass and plastics are partially transparent to microwaves. Material containing moisture, such as food and even people, absorbs microwave energy. If energy is absorbed at a rate greater than the rate at which the material looses energy (ie. rate of cooling), its temperature will increase.

Hazards of Microwave Oven

1. Continually eating food processed from a microwave oven causes long term, permanent, brain damage by “shorting out” electrical impulses in the brain [de-polarizing or de-magnetizing the brain tissue].
2. The human body cannot metabolize [break down] the unknown by-products created in micro-waved food.
3. Male and female hormone production is shut down and/or altered by continually eating micro-waved foods.
4. The effects of micro-waved food by-products are residual [long term, permanent] within the human body.
5. Minerals, vitamins, and nutrients of all micro-waved food is reduced or altered so that the human body gets little or no benefit, or the human body absorbs altered compounds that cannot be broken down.
6. The minerals in vegetables are altered into cancerous free radicals when cooked in a microwave oven.
7. Micro-waved foods cause stomach and intestinal cancerous growths [tumors]. This has been a primary contributor to the rapidly increased rate of colon cancer in the United States.
8. The prolonged eating of micro-waved foods causes cancerous cells to increase in human blood.
9. Continual ingestion of micro-waved food causes immune system deficiencies through lymph gland and blood serum alterations.
10. Eating micro-waved food causes loss of memory, concentration, emotional instability, and a decrease of intelligence.

Precautions for radiation safety in the use of Microwave Ovens:

• Never tamper with or inactivate the interlocking devices.

• Never use the oven without the trays provided by the manufacturer unless specifically allowed in the manufacturer’s instructions.

• Never operate the oven without a load (ie. an absorbing material such as food or water) in the oven cavity unless specifically allowed in the manufacturer’s instructions.

• Clean the oven cavity, the door and seals with water and a mild detergent at regular intervals (do not use abrasive cleaning pads).

Cooking Containers and Foils:

Plastic containers considered suitable for holding foods at room temperature may not necessarily be suitable for use in a microwave oven. The high cooking temperatures may cause the plastic’s chemistry to break down and thereby contaminate food in the container. Since it is difficult to determine the composition of plastic from its appearance, it is recommended that plastic containers or films not be used in a microwave oven unless specifically designated for such use.

Most ceramics, glass-ceramics, some plastics and papers are satisfactory for microwave oven use. Dishes with metallic glazes should not be used. If fast food foil containers and aluminium foil are used, the oven manufacturer’s directions should be carefully followed. Do not let fast food foil containers or aluminum foil touch the sides of the oven as this may cause sparking.

Safety Measures:

• It is sometimes possible to super-heat some liquids or foods beyond their natural boiling point. Such super heated liquids may boil suddenly and violently when jolted or stirred after removal from the oven – it is therefore a good idea to take precautions such as covering the food or liquid or allowing it cool before removal from the oven.

• When thawing frozen foods in the microwave oven it is important to thaw the food thoroughly before cooking.

• Do not use microwave ovens for sterilizing baby bottles or other food utensils.

• Ensure that all food prepared in a microwave oven is stirred and/or left to stand for a few minutes before consuming. In particular, care must be exercised when heating a baby’s bottle. Even though the glass bottle may be cool to the touch, the milk could be very hot. Cases have been reported where babies have received severe burns from drinking liquids taken directly from a microwave oven. To avoid problems do not heat baby’s liquids in a microwave oven. If there are no alternative means, thoroughly shake the bottle to mix the contents and test its temperature against the skin after heating.

• Use only cooking containers designated as suitable for microwave cooking.


3 thoughts on “Microwave Ovens – Hazards, Precautions and Safety Measures”

  1. That information is enough to put anyone off buying a microwave oven altogether. Is there another site where I can ready more on the safety issue before deciding whether or not to buy a microwave oven let alone which one?

    Reply
  2. Hi,
    I became concerned when I read your hazards section on microwave ovens so I went to Wikipedia and found this,
    “Some people are concerned with being exposed to the microwave oven’s radiation. According to the United States Food and Drug Administration’s Center for Devices and Radiological Health, a U.S. Federal standard limits microwave leakage from an oven, for the lifetime of the device, to 5 milliwatts per square centimeter when measured 5 centimeters from the surface of the oven.[10] This is far below the exposure level that is currently considered to be harmful to human health.

    The radiation produced by a microwave oven is non-ionizing. As such, it does not have the specific cancer risks associated with ionizing radiation such as X-rays, ultraviolet light, and high-energy particles. Long-term rodent studies to assess cancer risk have so far failed to clearly identify any carcinogenicity from 2.45 GHz microwave radiation at chronic (large fraction of life span) exposure levels, far larger than humans are likely to encounter even from leaking ovens.[11][12]”
    here’s the link
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Microwave_oven#Safety_and_controversy

    Reply

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