Invented in 1946 (by the German's), the microwave became an instant hit in the United States and around the world for the convenience of fast cooking methods.
I have a microwave, as do millions of other people in the world. (I assume YOU - yes, YOU, who is reading this... do you have a microwave?) Do you hear that little voice in your head that tells you not to stand in front of it while it's on? Why do you think that is? Where did that come from? We hear little buzz words here and there, but let's chat first about what a microwave is, and what it does to your food or beverages.
Microwave ovens create an electromagnetic field. They employ waves of electrical and magnetic energy in a contained space. The term "microwave oven" came from the term "microwaves" which are short waves of electromagnetic energy (also used in cell phones and radar detectors, to name a few..) that cause water to oscillate at an extremely high rate, creating heat. Microwave ovens work by passing microwave-band electromagnetic radiation over the food at 2.5 GHz. Molecules that are "electric dipoles", of which water is the most efficient, rotate back and forth in this field. The friction between them creates heat. This is called dielectric heating.
Food with the highest water content does heat up the quickest, so a food like a "Hot Pocket" (my son used to eat those) which feels slightly warm to the touch on the outside has scalding hot cheese and meat on the inside. (A reminder to be careful with some foods, as that is just asking for a dose of food poisoning..)
In studies, it has been found that by using the microwave to cook vegetables, you are losing more than 90% of the vegetables nutrients, especially if you had any water in them. The microwave radiation goes into the vegetables and destroys all but a tiny amount of the natural nutrients your body uses to fight disease, replenish cells and more. How can you fix this?
STOP using the microwave to cook vegetables and steam them, bake them, broil them or serve them raw.
Raw is the best way.
It has also been found that re-heating steak, hamburger or turkey in the microwave actually destroy all of the animal protein that the meat would have to offer if you didn't microwave it. The best way to re-heat your meal is just wrapping it up in foil and putting it back in the oven for a few minutes before you serve it. But in the world of fast, "I need it now", it doesn't happen as often as it should.
Take a look at your microwave? How old IS it? Older microwaves are known to leak radiation. Did you know your microwave should be CHECKED every two years to see if it is exposing EMF's (electromagnetic fields) to you or to the people in your household? How about those houses that still have a microwave from the 1980's?
Am I starting to scare you a little? Would YOU stand in from of that one?
Another scary fact about microwave is the leakage factor. Did you know the leakage factor is about six feet in length while the microwave is running? Does that mean we should all run into the next room while the microwave is on? (I'm thinking about that one now.)
And what about what you put in the microwave? Try to use glass. NOT Plastics. If you do, look at the bottom of the plastic containers. Look for numbers in the recycling arrow on the product. The numbers currently considered safe by the scientific community are #2, #4, and #5. Stay away from #1, #3, #6 and #7. If you don't see a number, call up the manufacturer and ask what it is. Treat plastic gently; the more you bang it up, the more likely it is to leach its chemical components into our food.
(I will write about this in the future.)
And, listen, you should never really put plastics in the microwave (even #3, #4 and #5) EVEN if it says "microwave safe". That just means how much heat it can withstand, not that it won't release its chemicals into your meal. Also scary, isn't it?
Are you heating up something tonight in the microwave?
More information on the Dangers of Microwaves: http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2010/05/18/microwave-hazards.aspx