Microwaves are an integral part of your lives today. A fixture in office pantries, convenience stores and homes for decades, the microwave oven has been heating frozen foods, leftovers and even more elaborate meals for decades. They are energy efficient, convenient and easy to use. But what does that radiation do to your food and can it really affect your health? Well, there are a lot of questions that keep bothering you when it comes to microwave cooking.
How Microwave Oven Works?
Microwave ovens produce micro wavelength radiation of 2450 Mega Hertz (MHz) or 2.45 Giga Hertz (GHz). This radiation passes though the molecules of your food and emit a form of EM energy similar to radio and light waves. Just as a magnet has a positive and negative polarity, so do the molecules of the food. The poles in the molecules are rotated millions of times over by the microwave. This ‘polarity rotation’ generates heat which eventually makes the food hot.
Let’s take a closer look at some myths and facts about Microwave Ovens –
- Microwave heats the metal – Myth
Plastic, glass and ceramics allow microwaves to pass through whereas Metal reflects them. It means that metals don’t considerably heat up in a microwave oven
- Microwave Cooking is Easier and Saves Energy – Fact
Basically your cooking efficiency depends upon a no. of factors, including what you are planning to prepare, the cost, the supply of electricity, gas or any other fuel. Although, a microwave uses less energy to heat food than the regular ovens or ranges. It’s also because it works faster and the entire energy is focussed directly on food rather than heating containers or surrounding air.
- Unsafe Electromagnetic rays are emitted from Microwaves – Myth
Microwave ovens don’t use “radiation”, instead they use radio waves. Microwaves aren’t high energy, the microwave photons are less energetic than visible light. It’s just that the source of microwaves is a very bright source, and hence it’s able to cook food. Now, if normal light could be as bright as it is, light could also cook food.
- Boiling Water in a cup can be Explosive – Fact
One danger of microwave oven in over heating the water. What can happen is that when plain water is heated in a microwave in a clean ceramic or glass container for too long, it can prevent bubbles from forming, which normally cool it down. The water can become superheated, past its boiling point. So when it is disturbed, say by moving it or dropping something in it, the heat releases violently, erupting boiling water out of the cup.
- Microwaves Cooks Inside out – Myth
While many people would like to agree to this but it is actually the opposite case. Microwaves work on the outer layers of food thereby letting the heat transfer to the inner parts of the food.
- Nutrients of the Food gets Destroyed in Microwave – Myth
If you are really concerned about the nutritious food that you want to eat, then microwave is the safest bet. In fact, it’s one of the top listed methods for preparing nutritional food item. If you use your microwave with a small amount of water to basically steam food from the inside, you’ll retain more vitamins and minerals than with almost any other cooking method.