1

votes

Non toxic kitchen materials of all kinds - how many of us go that extra mile?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 05, 2013 at 2:35 PM

Most people living paleo would be aware of many things concerning diet and how our ancestors we're going at it. Some of us even work out the way they think is similar to how our paleo parents were moving about. Then of course for those of us who choose to and can afford it, we buy organic products and grass-fed meat (beside chicken) . But how many of us are aware and willing to go that extra mile and make their whole kitchen with all its tools and utensils non-toxic? Only organic, natural materials like stainless steel pans, glass or ceramic oven dishes, and wooden utensils? Non of those non-stick pans with those toxic black inlays that give off toxic fumes when heated. Interested to know how many actually think of that and change things around in their kitchen :)

7efe820ea2b10a1d2a78977ce7a4f215

(348)

on February 06, 2013
at 05:05 PM

@MathGirl72 Bahahahaha.

757f1ff864ea8f669d58e83cc1f1881b

(309)

on February 06, 2013
at 09:13 AM

Don't freeze any liquids in glass though... It'll burst ... I speak from experience :D

757f1ff864ea8f669d58e83cc1f1881b

(309)

on February 06, 2013
at 08:55 AM

You're so right btw, many glass and steel containers still have the (BPA) plastic covers to go with it. Even if that part wouldn't touch the food, with some heat or damp it would definitely give off on the food. And that on a daily basis is just unhealthy.

757f1ff864ea8f669d58e83cc1f1881b

(309)

on February 06, 2013
at 08:52 AM

I don't know about ceramic pans, but as for teflon... well I could just smell it while it heated up on the stove. Extremely toxic fumes, and that happened with both new and old teflon pans. I never experience that with steel pans, but as far as substances leaking into our food... I don't know. I guess all we can do is our best to our current knowledge and ability.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on February 05, 2013
at 10:57 PM

How can somebody be so reasonable on Paleohacks!?

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on February 05, 2013
at 10:54 PM

Depends what you're freezing. Chemistry and contact matter when it comes to plastics, you could probably get away with it in some cases.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on February 05, 2013
at 07:00 PM

I too use teflon for eggs. I don't brown food in teflon pans. Ceramic does a better job. And stainless? I make such a mess in those pans, I hardly use them anymore.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on February 05, 2013
at 06:58 PM

Full disclaimer though: I work with perfluorinated chemicals on a daily basis, essentially tagging individual molecules with teflon.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on February 05, 2013
at 06:57 PM

Burning a lot of things causes toxic fumes to be released. Which is essentially what you do when you burn teflon. The temperature needed to produce these gases is well beyond what you'll be cooking at.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on February 05, 2013
at 06:16 PM

Watch your use of aluminum in cooking. They are finding aluminum in the brains of Alzheimer's patients.

3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on February 05, 2013
at 05:59 PM

Too many of these substances are found in human blood streams, nursing mother's milk, and in our children. I wasn't able to nurse my second child for medical reasons and she drank from plastic baby bottles that I now know were BPA. I was shocked to see her develop breasts at age 7 (and the doctors didn't even think that's unusual!) and early puberty in general. I believe it's directly related to the baby bottles we used.

3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on February 05, 2013
at 05:56 PM

Teflon at too high temperatures (can you honestly say you've NEVER burned anything in the kitchen???) gives off toxic fumes that can (and DO) kill pet birds and cause flu-like illness in humans. We do know that ceramics and stainless steel are stable and do not leach out into food, but we also know that plastic compounds used for food storage ARE endocrine disruptors. The industrial lobbies may claim otherwise, but there's ample evidence--and not just BPA, but BPA is a very common worst offender.

D8612a7c536e74f9855b70d8e97919b5

(1042)

on February 05, 2013
at 05:53 PM

Pyrex makes some good-sized ones: http://www.amazon.com/Pyrex-6022369-Storage-14-Piece-Round/dp/B0000CFTB0/ref=sr_1_2?s=kitchen&srs=2599218011&ie=UTF8&qid=1360086690&sr=1-2&keywords=pyrex Also, I think tiffins are pretty cool. Obviously you can't microwave them, but they cut down or eliminate the need to use tupperware/ziploc.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on February 05, 2013
at 05:38 PM

Bleach is a pretty innocuous cleanser. Short-lived.

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on February 05, 2013
at 05:14 PM

The Salvation Army is a great place to score these kind of things.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on February 05, 2013
at 04:57 PM

I call bullshit.

  • 757f1ff864ea8f669d58e83cc1f1881b

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8 Answers

best answer

4
Fd7b128cf714044a86d8bd822c7a8992

(4292)

on February 05, 2013
at 03:31 PM

I do make some effort to do this, but I prioritize. For example, I switched to stainless steel containers for carrying my breakfast and lunch to work because I eat out of them every day. I still use a plastic ladle because I only really use it to scoop hard-boiled eggs out of the pot, so I don't think it makes much difference. In that case, I think it's better to reduce waste and use the thing until it wears out.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on February 05, 2013
at 10:57 PM

How can somebody be so reasonable on Paleohacks!?

1
0a6edaa0b246cc6d631e83e30380d3d9

on February 05, 2013
at 08:22 PM

what has everyone found to be the best for freezing - avoiding plastic? I'm going to try using some glass jars that I've recycled - any advice?

757f1ff864ea8f669d58e83cc1f1881b

(309)

on February 06, 2013
at 09:13 AM

Don't freeze any liquids in glass though... It'll burst ... I speak from experience :D

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on February 05, 2013
at 10:54 PM

Depends what you're freezing. Chemistry and contact matter when it comes to plastics, you could probably get away with it in some cases.

1
A3c56c85290f748410a6f340ddd552b3

on February 05, 2013
at 06:13 PM

I've mostly switched to glass containers for all food. Pyrex is the shizz (especially when I see it on Woot! for cheap. Love wooden spoons and spatulas. I eat out of glass or ceramic or metal.

I received a "greenpan" skillet for xmas and it replaced a really bad nasty toxic killing black teflon pan, so that's a small upgrade, I suppose. I'm not so orthorexic with cookware that I use cast iron for everything. Yet.

1
510bdda8988ed0d4b0ec0b738b4edb73

(20888)

on February 05, 2013
at 05:41 PM

It's not that simple...first, there's the whole cost-benefit that I wrote about here:

http://paleohacks.com/questions/175709/do-you-think-that-examining-the-finer-points-of-paleo-sometimes-causes-more-harm/175724#175724

Second, who says that stainless steel and ceramics are "non-toxic" or less toxic than teflon? Yes teflon is a scary "chemical", but do you know if it actually gets into the food?

How do they make stainless steel? You take iron, add carbon (harmless) and it become steel. You then take steel add nickel and chromium (heavy metals) and it becomes stainless steel.

What are ceramics? Ceramics are generally metallic oxides in a crystalline structure. Those metals are often aluminum, berylium, cerium, zirconium or other heavy metals. Do you know they're non-toxic? Do you know if they leach into the food?

I could go on and on about this. I'm not saying that stainless steel or ceramics are bad, but we also don't know that they're good. Just because something seems scary (teflon) and something seems good (ceramics) doesn't mean that they are bad or good, respectively. You need to look at the science and see if it is actually hurting you (I would put storing, cooking food in plastics as definitely bad: http://chriskresser.com/how-plastic-food-containers-could-be-making-you-fat-infertile-and-sick).

Personally, I use ceramics for most of my meat because I like how it browns the meat (and there's a difference between real ceramics and stuff like the "orgreenic" pan, that's a ceramic with a coating!). I also use teflon for eggs. I'm not scared, and it just makes my life easier than scrubbing a pan after making a dozen eggs every morning.

3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on February 05, 2013
at 05:59 PM

Too many of these substances are found in human blood streams, nursing mother's milk, and in our children. I wasn't able to nurse my second child for medical reasons and she drank from plastic baby bottles that I now know were BPA. I was shocked to see her develop breasts at age 7 (and the doctors didn't even think that's unusual!) and early puberty in general. I believe it's directly related to the baby bottles we used.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on February 05, 2013
at 06:58 PM

Full disclaimer though: I work with perfluorinated chemicals on a daily basis, essentially tagging individual molecules with teflon.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on February 05, 2013
at 07:00 PM

I too use teflon for eggs. I don't brown food in teflon pans. Ceramic does a better job. And stainless? I make such a mess in those pans, I hardly use them anymore.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on February 05, 2013
at 06:57 PM

Burning a lot of things causes toxic fumes to be released. Which is essentially what you do when you burn teflon. The temperature needed to produce these gases is well beyond what you'll be cooking at.

3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on February 05, 2013
at 05:56 PM

Teflon at too high temperatures (can you honestly say you've NEVER burned anything in the kitchen???) gives off toxic fumes that can (and DO) kill pet birds and cause flu-like illness in humans. We do know that ceramics and stainless steel are stable and do not leach out into food, but we also know that plastic compounds used for food storage ARE endocrine disruptors. The industrial lobbies may claim otherwise, but there's ample evidence--and not just BPA, but BPA is a very common worst offender.

757f1ff864ea8f669d58e83cc1f1881b

(309)

on February 06, 2013
at 08:52 AM

I don't know about ceramic pans, but as for teflon... well I could just smell it while it heated up on the stove. Extremely toxic fumes, and that happened with both new and old teflon pans. I never experience that with steel pans, but as far as substances leaking into our food... I don't know. I guess all we can do is our best to our current knowledge and ability.

1
Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

on February 05, 2013
at 05:21 PM

I haven't used Teflon in years. Cast iron, stainless steel, galvanized steel (for braising), ceramic... I got an OrGreenic ceramic sautee pan for Christmas. I like it, great for over-easy.

I don't worry about storage. I cool foods in glass or stainless, then store it in plastic. I've been sending my niece to school with zip-bags, because I know her teacher will dump them into her dishes before nuking. Glass containers would be a nice way to cut back on this waste. If I can find any small enough for a lunch tote...

D8612a7c536e74f9855b70d8e97919b5

(1042)

on February 05, 2013
at 05:53 PM

Pyrex makes some good-sized ones: http://www.amazon.com/Pyrex-6022369-Storage-14-Piece-Round/dp/B0000CFTB0/ref=sr_1_2?s=kitchen&srs=2599218011&ie=UTF8&qid=1360086690&sr=1-2&keywords=pyrex Also, I think tiffins are pretty cool. Obviously you can't microwave them, but they cut down or eliminate the need to use tupperware/ziploc.

1
3491e51730101b18724dc57c86601173

(8395)

on February 05, 2013
at 05:15 PM

Working on it. It's pretty hard to get rid of all plastics in the kitchen, and my husband (cook in the family) has been resistant. But I'm making inroads.

I've switched to all glass containers at home--glass canning jars and glass bowls for storing food, but they almost ALL have plastic lids. I have stainless steel tiffins for carrying food outside the house. Most of our pans are non-stick, although my husband won't give up his non-stick omelette pan.

One of the hardest areas to get rid of plastic is coffeemaking: The grinder is almost all plastic, the coffeemaker is plastic and makes coffee into plastic thermal cups. I do have an aluminum stovetop mokka pot for making espresso, but it takes too long for morning coffee. I'm thinking of buying a ceramic Melita style cone and going back to making my own coffee by hand. I sure do love the convenience of the coffee maker ,though.

Since we eat few processed foods, we don't buy too many things in BPA lined cans, but so far I am buying coconut milk frozen in plastic packages. Our frozen, grass fed meat comes in vacuum sealed plastic packages. I don't see a way around that--we buy from a farm source but they don't do enough business to always have fresh meat on hand.

Dishwasher soap is another toxic in the kitchen. I'm not sure how to get around that--our dishwasher saves tons of water since we don't need to pre-rinse dishes and it works very efficiently, but the soap seems pretty toxic. I try to stay out of the kitchen when it's running and when it's first opened because it aerosolizes the soap chemicals which are not good for my asthma. It's good to have slaves--er--teenagers whose job it is to empty the dishwasher!

I make my own orange spray (orange peels + vinegar) for cleaning. I use a powdered cleanser (Bon Ami) in small amounts. It's free of fragrances and it's caustic, but not laden with petroleum based toxins. It helps that I'm allergic to a lot of chemicals, so we are pretty green when it comes to cleaning.

The bathroom is another area. I've switched to a crystal stick deoderant, we have mild natural soaps and shampoo, vinegar based cleaners. But toothbrushes are plastic. And I do admit to nuking the toilet bowl with a bleach based cleaner--that's one thing that has to be really cleaned, IMHO.

We're working on it--at least I can say that.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on February 05, 2013
at 06:16 PM

Watch your use of aluminum in cooking. They are finding aluminum in the brains of Alzheimer's patients.

32f5749fa6cf7adbeb0b0b031ba82b46

(41747)

on February 05, 2013
at 05:38 PM

Bleach is a pretty innocuous cleanser. Short-lived.

1
61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on February 05, 2013
at 05:03 PM

I am slowly weeding out all of the bad items from my kitchen. I only have stainless steel or cast iron pots and pans. I pick up glass and stainless steel storage containers when they go on sale, but still use plastic when I travel because it is light weight and easier to store in luggage. I recently learned the lids for my canning jars contain BPA, so my next purchase will be BPA-free reusable lids I found online.

Ed7403e397077dd1acdbf25c7f6e56ce

(3452)

on February 05, 2013
at 05:14 PM

The Salvation Army is a great place to score these kind of things.

757f1ff864ea8f669d58e83cc1f1881b

(309)

on February 06, 2013
at 08:55 AM

You're so right btw, many glass and steel containers still have the (BPA) plastic covers to go with it. Even if that part wouldn't touch the food, with some heat or damp it would definitely give off on the food. And that on a daily basis is just unhealthy.

1
7efe820ea2b10a1d2a78977ce7a4f215

(348)

on February 05, 2013
at 04:05 PM

My whole house is non-toxic.

61844af1187e745e09bb394cbd28cf23

(11058)

on February 05, 2013
at 04:57 PM

I call bullshit.

7efe820ea2b10a1d2a78977ce7a4f215

(348)

on February 06, 2013
at 05:05 PM

@MathGirl72 Bahahahaha.

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