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December 26, 2010

Healthy Kitchenware

by Stephanie Carnes
OHN Contributor

The quality of the food you eat is just as important as the quality of kitchenware that you use to cook and store it in! Finding non-toxic pots, pans, and food containers is an essential step on your journey toward optimal health. Here’s a review of the non-toxic options available:

Glass pans are considered to be one of the healthiest options. Although there are white glass casserole dishes sold in the national chain stores, glass saucepans have been discontinued. However, you can still find them at thrift stores and on eBay.

Porcelain covered aluminum is considered safe as long as there are no chips or cracks. These pans are lightweight and very reasonably priced. For example, Martha Stewart has a line of lightweight gray-colored porcelain pots that are sold at K-Mart.

Teflon scratches easily and it toxic at very high temperatures. If you’re careful with your pans, Teflon is an acceptable option that’s safe to use for short, stove-top cooking.

Cast iron was once considered to be one of the healthiest options. However, Raymond Peat, a respected naturopath in Eugene, Oregon, has explained that excess iron is very toxic. In a newsletter article called “Iron’s Dangers” he writes:

“Just like lead, mercury, cadmium, nickel and other heavy metals, stored iron produces destructive free radicals. The harmful effects of iron-produced free radicals are practically indistinguishable from those causes by exposure to X-rays and gamma rays; both accelerate the accumulation of age-pigment and other signs of aging.”

Raymond Peat explains that there are two main types of stainless steel, magnetic and nonmagnetic. The nonmagnetic form has a very high nickel content. He explains that nickel is much more toxic than iron or aluminum. It’s both allergenic and carcinogenic.

To test for safe stainless, use a refrigerator magnet to determine which pans contain a high amount of nickel. The magnet will stick to the safer type of pan. Note: Newer thermos containers tend to be lined with stainless steel that does not pass the refrigerator magnet safety test described above. The older thermos bottles lined with glass are the safest option, and they are available at

SOURCE: Ten Days to Optimal Health (Amelong 2006)

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