Reaching for a frozen entrée from your freezer, reading the simple directions on the back, and popping it into the microwave oven can lead to a meal that took a total of three minutes. And it’s a modern convenience utilized in many American households. According to The Southwest Museum of Engineering, Communication and Computation (SMECC), more than 95 percent of American homes own a microwave oven because it is seen as “almost impossible/pretty difficult” to do without.
Here’s the rub: while your frozen meal may consist of Lean Cuisine-type products with healthy ingredients and low calories, the way you cook your food directly affects the amount of nutrients your body consumes. This common household appliance can significantly zap the nutritional value of your food and your health, leaving you susceptible to developing health complications due to continuous microwave use, and begging the question: is convenience worth sacrificing your health?
MICROWAVES ZAP FOOD NUTRITION
Heating your food in the microwave can strip away its original nutrients. What may have started as a nutritious plate of food has now evolved into “dead food” due to the dielectric heating of microwaves. “They bounce around the inside of your [microwave] oven and are absorbed by the food you put in it,” writes Dr. Joseph M. Mercola, licensed physician and surgeon. The water molecules rotate rapidly in the microwave and in the food in high frequencies which creates molecular friction and heats up your food. This causes the molecular structure in your food to change, and as a result diminishes the nutrient content in the food.
MICROWAVES DESTROY BREAST MILK AND VITAMIN B-12
The health benefits of vitamin B-12 are instantly negated once heated in a microwave. In a study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry, researchers decided to examine the effects of microwave heating on the loss of vitamin B-12 in foods like raw beef, pork, and milk. The results of the study show there was a 30 to 40 percent loss of the vitamin when the foods received microwave exposure. The shift of vitamin B-12 to an inactive form of the vitamin was found in foods during the microwave heating process.