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Cookware and your Health

Updated: Feb 6

Here's some food for thought: Could your cookware hold the key to better health? Emerging research suggests it just might. Your pots, pans, and baking sheets may seem like humble kitchen tools, but they could play an overlooked role in your wellbeing. Let's examine why the vessel you use to stir-fry veggies or bake chicken might matter more than you think. Get ready to look at your cookware in a whole new light.

Companies are dynamic, not static. Their practices, materials, and manufacturing locations evolve over time. This guide provides a snapshot of the cookware landscape at the time of writing. Before making any purchases, be sure to conduct additional research to get the full picture. The details may have changed since we last updated this guide. Stay curious and keep learning - that's how you become a savvy shopper. With some digging, you'll find cookware that aligns with both your cooking needs and values. Did you know aluminum is a big no-no for those with kidney disease? I'm not just talking about the aluminum in your deodorant or other personal care products. I'm talking cookware too. Yep, those aluminum pots and pans are leaching toxins into your food every time you cook. And don't even get me started on aluminum foil! Wrapping up leftovers in foil means you're wrapping up a serving of toxins too. Both aluminum cookware and foil release aluminum into your food, which puts major strain on already struggling kidneys. So do your kidneys a favor and ditch the aluminum. Your health is worth it!

Which types of cookware are toxic?

  • Teflon has PTFE and PFOA - PTFE is dangerous to people and pets, for birds it can be fatal. PFOA has been linked to several different types of cancer,

  • Aluminum (including aluminum foil) is a neurotoxic metal. Elevated aluminum levels have been linked to several central nervous system diseases, including Alzheimer's. Though aluminum cookware is usually coated, the coating is easy to chip, which then allows the toxic metal to leach into your food.

  • Copper is good in small quantities. However, too much leads to heavy metal poisoning. If copper cookware isn't coated, it can still release copper when cooking acidic foods. When it's coated, the coating often contains nickel, which is another toxic element.

  • Nickel is often used to line copper and stainless steel pots and pans. Unfortunately, nickel is one of the most toxic metals, some say that only a small amount of nickel is released into your food and probably won't cause any problems unless you are allergic to nickel. Without more studies to prove it is safe, it's recommended to try and avoid it. If you own cookware with nickel keep in mind it releases more nickel at higher temperatures and when cooking acidic foods.

Which types of cookware are safe? *Please always do your own research, be sure that the cookware recommended is in fact safe for your personal use and avoid allergens and other metals you may react to.

  • Ceramic coated is a safe option and has both pros and cons. 100% ceramic cookware, not ceramic nonstick cookware, has some natural non-stick properties, and does not leach or emit potentially harmful fumes. So, ceramic cookware is a top choice for non-toxic cookware. It is also eco-friendly and long-lasting if maintained correctly. So what's the con? It may not be as non-stick as some of those toxic non-stick pans, but with the correct oils and temperatures for cooking it is easy to use and nearly non-stick.

  • Stainless steel is very durable and can be non-toxic or low toxic if you avoid products that have nickel and chromium. Do you really need to avoid these toxic metals? Not necessarily, it depends on the manufacturer, how much they use and how it's designed. I highly recommend these cookware products, see my recommendations by clicking HERE!

  • Cast iron is a good choice for non-toxic cookware. However, it's the cookware with the most cons. It's heavy, some find it harder to clean. It's porous so for families with allergies or needing to avoid gluten, for example, you cannot share a cast iron skillet.

As more research is done you may find more cookware to avoid or to consider. It's always a great idea to do your own research and always look at dates of articles written and of research done on this subject.

Consult with our expert nutritionist to get on the path to better health. Fill out a brief health questionnaire and we'll schedule a personalized consultation to address your wellness goals.



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