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Does Microwaving Destroy Nutrients?

Does Microwaving Destroy Nutrients? Not AlwaysLately I have been hearing and reading about the idea that microwave ovens destroy the nutrients in our foods.

And I have even heard that microwaving can be outright dangerous.

So I thought this might be an important topic to investigate.

Well, I have some news for you…

It turns out that microwaving your food does not destroy nutrients, in fact it demonstrates equal or better retention of nutrients as compared to other cooking methods…1

For example, studies at Cornell University found that spinach retained nearly all its folate when cooked in a microwave, but lost about 77 percent when cooked on a stove.2

A meta-analysis of the microwave nutrient issue published by the The Journal of The American Dietetic Association concluded that:

…studies showed equal or better retention of nutrients for microwave, as compared with conventional, reheated foods for thiamin, riboflavin, pyridoxine, folic acid, and ascorbic acid.”

They also found that that bacon cooked in the microwave has significantly lower levels of cancer-causing nitrosamines than conventionally cooked bacon.

The Science of Nutrients and Cooking

The first fact to know is that every method of cooking can destroy nutrients.

Steaming is a great way to preserve nutrients in foodThe main issues to consider are:

• Cooking Time: The less the better

• Amount of Liquid Used: The less the better

• Cooking Intensity: The lower the better

With microwave ovens, cooking times can be so fast that they actually use less heat (intensity) than most other cooking methods.

By using low heat, microwaves can help preserve the most heat sensitive nutrients like B & C vitamins and folic acid.

And as already mentioned, microwave cooking times are shorter than almost all conventional methods.

One of the biggest nutrient-draining cooking methods seems to be boiling because of the submersion in excess water. 3

In a study involving broccoli, between 74% and 97% of nutrients were lost when water was added to the cooking method, while when steamed or cooked without water very few nutrients were lost.

How to Cook Using The Microwave

(This advice actually applies to non-microwave cooking as well.)

First, make sure not to add additional water. For example, after you rinse your vegetables off, make sure to dry them off with a towel before putting them in the microwave.

Second, cook as little as possible. As with any cooking method, it is best to undercook as opposed to overcook.

Third, try steaming. There are a lot of frozen vegetable that come in bags you can plop in the microwave and steam.

I hope you have enjoyed this information, and please share your thoughts on this subject below. I know there are plenty of strong opinions on the subject.


Dr. Steven Sisskind, M.D.

1. Hoffman CJ, Zabik MEp. Effects of microwave cooking/reheating on nutrients and food systems: a review of recent studies. J Am Diet Assoc. 1985 Aug;85(8):922-6.

2. http://www.nytimes.com/2006/10/17/health/17real.html

3. F Vallejo, FA Tomas-Barberan, C Garcia-Viguera. Phenolic compound contents in edible parts of broccoli inflorescences after domestic cooking. Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture 2003 Nov; 83(14):1511- 1516

Comments

  1. Barbara says:

    Thank you for this information. I have read articles that Microwaves alter the cellular structure of the food which is dangerous for our body. They contend that in essence we are eating foods that the body does not recognize and does not know how to digest , process it or clean it out of the body properly. Do you have any information on this? This seems much more dangerous and significant that losing a few vitamins and minerals. I’m quite worried about all of the microwaving I do!

    thank you very much,
    Barbara Paz

    • Jane says:

      Should food be covered when cooking in microwave?
      Thanks, Jane

      • Dr. Steve says:

        Hi Jane, I think that is a personal preference, however it does seem to cook faster and stay moist when covered.

        • Beth says:

          Plus it keeps things from spattering all over the microwave, making for easier clean-up. Look for reusable inexpensive plastic microwavable covers, possibly in Walmart, Kohl”s or Linen’s and Things.

          • Evie Hakeem says:

            What about the statement that some plastic chemicals get into food while mcrowaving. Any additional information on this?

          • Hi Evie – Absolutely! So to avoid this, you always want to avoid plastic content with foods. You can empty foods into microwaveable dishes and stem them with a cover rather than microwaving in the bag. Wax paper can be a good alternative as a topper when steaming. Thanks for the comment.

    • ellen says:

      Hi Glad to hear this, but you do not address another concern. I have read that when you microwave food in a PLASTIC bag, the plastic changes form and poisons food. Please give me your opinion.
      Thanks.
      Ellen

      • Dr. Steve says:

        Hi Ellen, I have more research to do on this, however there are many plastic products that are considered microwave safe.

    • I have “nuked” all my veggies, fresh and frozen, for over three years now. I prefer to cover them with a moist paper towel and I love the way the taste and retain texture. My body seems to have no trouble recognizing the foods evidenced by my excellent health and reasonable weight. My favorite veggies are of course fresh out of my garden, but any and all will do. Take about 16 ounces of mixed veggies and add about 4 ounces of meat, prepared separate from the veggies, and you will have a big satisfying dinner at about 300 calories, and full of nutrition. Your weight will decrease and you will not feel like you are starving. Enjoy:-)

    • Beatrice says:

      not to worry, this is BS (pardon my French, as I am French!)

    • June Levin says:

      I have over the years learned that microwave ovens cause all kinds of health problems and trashed mine many years
      ago. I have to agree with Barbara Paz.

      It just makes sense to get all the plastics out of your life, which my husband and I have done, and to cook veggies by lightly and quickly steaming them. Or of course eating them fresh organic and raw.

    • Marie says:

      What about the cancer causing agents there are in the plastic bags food comes in?

      • Dr. Steve says:

        Hi Marie – I agree that using plastics in microwaves is highly discouraged because of the harmful chemicals that are released. It is best to avoid using plastics in the microwave whenever possible.

    • Joanne says:

      Thank you for the information on microwaves.By the way all your News letters are helpfull.

    • bdsteed says:

      I disagree with the doctor. Microwaves are bad.

      They affect your white blood cell count in a bad way.

      b

    • Ruth Reid says:

      Hi Dr Steve,

      My concern is not so much the nutrient loss but the amount of radiation that is generated by the microwave.
      What are your views on this?

    • Stuart says:

      @ Barbara Paz: This is also my primary concern, and why so many of us avoid the micro. I do not see a response to your question, although it is the first one to be asked. We are radiation saturated these days by g4 devices and eating eating molecularly excited food seems to be counter-intuitive.

    • Cindy says:

      Would have loved to see the response to your question.

      • Hi Cindy,

        Thank you for writing in! In response, it is perfectly safe to use the microwave ovens to heat or partially cook your meals. The radiation being emitted by the appliance mainly targets the water molecules in our food and does not alter the genetic or molecular structure of our meals. Also, these modern day kitchen appliances are put under rigorous testing in order to guarantee their safety when used inside our homes. I hope this helps! Have a healthy day!

    • Laurel says:

      I noticed the Doc didn’t answer your remarks…. That’s interesting…

      • Hi Laurel,

        Thank you for writing in and for letting us know! Our microwave appliances were specifically designed to only excite water molecules in our food items. They do not alter any genes or modify DNA, but will dry out your meats and vegetables if you prolong heating time. I apologize if this was not answered previously but do hope this makes up for my oversight. Home appliances, microwaves included, undergo rigorous and constant testing by both manufacturers and concerned agencies to ensure that the consumer is protected and their health is not put at risk. Hope this helps! Have a healthy day!

  2. Tawanda says:

    Thank you for the information getting in as much nutrition as possible is the heart of it…

    • Dr. Steve says:

      Hi Tawanda, thanks for the feedback. Yes, you are correct, getting in as much nutrition as possible is the idea !

      • If you don’t think Micro-ing doesn’t destroy foods, I hope you do this little experiment. get yourself two healthy plants. feed one plant with tap water, the other but a glass of water in the microwave. After cooling down this water that you pout in for 60 seconds feed the 2ND plant as you did the first plant.

        Within a week, I kept on doing this. And the first plant was alive and well. The 2ND died miserably. A slow but certain death.

        You have my email. Hope to hear from you soon.

        • Hi Harold,

          Thank you for sharing this interesting experiment with us! I am always curious about the kinds of thought this topic has invoked with our readers and followers. I hope to hear more of your feedback in the future! have a healthy day!

        • Jan says:

          Hi Harold – As I read your experiment, it seems flawed to me in this way: microwaved then cooled water is not comparable to tap water because of that near-boiling treatment part of the process — thus, it would be more comparable to stove near-boiled water, then cooled. Both processes would have some effect on the amount of oxygen in the water I would think, and likely other factors (this is why tea enthusiasts are so particular about the temp of their water before adding the tea leaves, etc.). That factor would likely also then also effect your plant. SO – I don’t think the “radiation” itself, of your water, had anything to do with it. If you choose to repeat the experiment with that correction, I’d be interested in what you find! All best wishes, Jan

  3. lisa says:

    I have the same comment, its the microwaves and the blowing up of the enzymes in the food, making the food unrecognizable to our bodies that is scarey. Supposedly it even changes water molecules.
    The reports you relied on where in 85? I think if you studied a group of people who used microwaves alot, vs those
    that cook without them that the microwave group would have a higher cancer rate. Just a thought.
    But all studies I ever saw were opposite of what you say. There needs to be alot more done.
    We’re dealing with Microwaves, and being bombarded every day by waves from phones, towers, appliances and on and on..
    just not good.

    • Dr. Steve says:

      Hi Lisa, thanks for sharing your thoughts. I agree that research should be ongoing. I think the point is, the less time you cook your food the better it holds it nutritional value.

      • Dottie says:

        Dr. Jack,
        Thank you for sharing this wonderful information. Don’t feel bad if I can’t get fresh vegs in season,
        as fresh out of the can is good too. :-) Frozen of course better ~ but get the vegs somehow.
        Dottie

        • Dr. Steve says:

          Hi Dottie – You got the perfect perspective! Do what you can and focus on all your available options!

        • Theresa says:

          Dottie mentions canned food providing fresh (acceptable available option ) vegetables which I’m surmising is not referring to one’s home canning/processing method utilising glass jars. Thus people are again subjecting themselves to harmful chemicals leaching from the metal can’s plastic liners which by the way is the same harmful chemical leaching associated with plastic use in microwaves. Glass containers are a safe option.
          Again, to avoid ingesting these health harming chemicals in your food one must look for BPA free plastic used in food preparation which includes both plastic storage bags and plastic can liners. This means that the product is not formulated with BPA (Bisphenol A). This information is usually proudly provided on the packaging label.

      • LydiaMay says:

        I have read that it is “volatile” to the food as well. I have read some raw foodist books and while I could never be one totally, it is best to eat veggies raw, steaming is a good way to go yet you see so many of the nutrients left in the water. Also a crock pot since it is low heat. I have done quite well without a micro wave for about 4 years now. Better safe than sorry. There are so many things bad for us now, especially all the chemicals and modified foods. Crazy!

        • Hello LydiaMay,

          Thank you for posting your comments to our website. It is very difficult to find foods that are not processed, full of chemicals, or modified. Thanks for sharing your thoughts with the Realdose Community.

  4. Yes, thank you. I too have heard that microwave cooking can preserve nutrients–but the real issue is not that there are vitamins left in the food, but are the vitamins the same as before.

    The concept of nutrient preservation first came from chefs who preferred the taste of microwaved foods. Natural health oriented people first were concerned when microwave ovens damaged eyesight due to leakage of the radio waves. Then the concerns shifted to the inner-agitation of the food molecules to produce heat–that this agitation altered the DNA structures of the food and made it less recognizable by the body’s innate intelligence (cell membranes). So microwave ovens entered into the arena of cell phone, computer, and television radiations of “non-ionizing” radiation that alters the life-structures of the food molecules. Following this, kinesiologists began stating that foods cooked with microwaves “tested poorly.”

    Your article has launched me to re-investigate the premise that microwaves damage the chromatin factors in food and thus renders it incompatible with what our genetic processes are programmed to use. The concerns that need to be resolved are:
    1) is the food’s DNA damaged,
    2) does microwave-cooked food cause a different epigenetic expression of our own DNA,
    3) are microwave-altered molecules inflammatory to the cell membranes–mitochondrial membranes,
    4) are micro-waved molecules induced into the mitochondria’s citric acid cycle and beta oxidation processes to make ATP the same as raw and conventionally cooked food?

    Another issue worthy of research is that microwaved food, fresh out of the oven, is still cooking from within. When people eat it right out of the oven, the cooking continues in the stomach and is claimed to “cook cells in our stomachs” thus the caution to let the food sit a couple of minutes before eating it.

    Yet another issue is, does microwaving food transfer plastic molecules from the plastic wrap touching the food into the food, thus imparting to the body molecules that become neurotoxins and hormone disruptors?

    Since the only nutrition that is truly nutritional is “cellular nutrition” — nutrients that the cells can use — this is the arena that needs to be investigated. The fact that vitamins are still present in microwaved food is not conclusive of the safety of eating such food because we don’t know the “quality” of the vitamins. We know that there are different kinds and qualities of vitamins — the synthetic USP B-vitamins made from coal tar, and the ones derived from yeast, and the ones found in raw food straight from mother nature.

    So the real issue is not just that there are vitamins left in the microwaved food. The real issues are:
    1) are the retained vitamins, proteins, fats, carbohydrates, etc. exactly the same as were in the food before irradiating it,
    2) does the irradiation of the food alter the food’s genetic structures by the agitation of the molecules?

    The core issues about damage to protein and fat molecules and the altering of the plant genetics upon which our own epigenetic expression of either health or disease is founded, has not been addressed in your research. This is where factual data is so sorely needed.

    • Dr. Steve says:

      Hi Dr Jack,

      First I want to thank you for taking the time to write in. I know you are a busy person and it means a lot that you thought enough to respond.
      I took the time and looked at what you are doing at jacktips.com and it is very impressive. You have obviously been at this a long time,
      and the fact that you truly care really comes through.

      Now, about the microwave.
      First, as I was researching this post, I also read on some of the issues you brought up. However, each one seemed to lead to nowhere in
      terms of legitimate evidence.
      For example, I can not rely on muscle testing as a valid source of data for the simple reason that muscle testing does not meet scientific standards.
      There are multiple studies supporting this, but this one seems to represent the others fairly well:

      http://chiromt.com/content/15/1/11

      And it quotes, “When AK is disentangled from standard orthopedic muscle testing, the few studies evaluating unique AK procedures either refute or cannot support the validity of AK procedures as diagnostic tests. The evidence to date does not support the use of MMT for the diagnosis of organic disease or pre/subclinical conditions.”

      As for the idea that microwaves causing damage to a food’s DNA (or the epigenetic expression) and the subsequent effects this may cause, it does not appear that it would damage a food’s DNA any more than other methods of cooking for reasons mentioned in the article. All cooking agitates the molecules of the food, this is not unique to microwaves.

      Going in more detail, the frequency of microwave radiation is usually at 2.45 GHz (this is between common radio and infrared frequencies). Furthermore, microwave radiation is non ionizing, as opposed to other radiation like X-Rays where there is evidence of the problems you mention.

      The main thing though is that I could not find one solid piece of evidence (proven research) demonstrating any of the negative effects you mentioned.

      Science is interesting though. As with anything maybe the truth has not come out yet… and I am always open to real research.

      About microwaves cooking the food from within and thus causing damage because of this… The fact of the matter and a common misconception is that microwaves cook food from the inside out. This confusion is caused by the fact that microwaves do heat food at a deeper level, and because its main mechanism is heating the water molecules in food… thus causing energy to be released… it can then seem like the food is being cooked from the inside out. So I don’t think you have anything to worry about in terms of the food still cooking in one’s stomach. But like any other food, one should wait until it is cool enough to eat.

      As far as plastics, that is something I thought about and should have probably done more research on… and thanks for catching me on this.

      I just did some research and have come to find that many current plastic containers and food packaging are now designed to withstand microwave radiation. They even are labeled “microwave safe” or contain a microwave symbol (three lines of waves, one above the other). However, I (like you) am also concerned about foods microwaved in plastics without these safety standards.

      I know I need to dig deeper, but I tend to trust the research at Harvard.

      http://www.health.harvard.edu/fhg/updates/update0706a.shtml

      Again, I hope I am not coming off as defensive… I really do appreciate your thoughts. And at the end of the day I could be wrong – it would not be the first time.

      Take Care,

      Dr. Steve

    • Ted Pulfer says:

      Hi, several years ago I saw an e-mail, can’t remember who from, that showed an example of what microwaves do to ordinary water. The people involved used two identical young plants and one was watered with ordinary water whilst the other was watered with water that had been microwaved. After 3 weeks the one watered with ordinary water was looking really healthy and robust and the one that had been watered with the microwaved water was stone dead, withered, and looked like it had been sprayed with Glyphosate. For me, microwaves, no thanks!! Regards, Ted.

  5. Bruce says:

    I’ve heard the same comments as Barbara and understand there is lots of industry PR misinformation. Please respond to Barbara and me. After all, “let your food be your medicine and your medicine be your food”

  6. Ron says:

    Barbara, check out this article. http://www.pccnaturalmarkets.com/sc/0601/sc0601-microwave.html
    I am sure there are some nutrients that are not effected by microwaving, but what about others that are? There seems to be a lot of indications that there is possible health issues from microwaving food. I would think it preferable to err on the side of safety and health. I am using my microwave less and less. Ron

  7. Tom CHHC says:

    I would NEVER microwave any food in a plastic bag or in a plastic tray. The best way to cook is lightly steaming, or in water (as with stew). Any nutrients lost from the food will be in the water.

  8. Tony B. says:

    I wonder what vessels/plates are safe to use in the microwave. I do not use plastic wrap to cover. I have found that coffee filters work well. I do not trust plastic. The article does give me some confidence as I have been pondering about keeping or getting rid of my microwave.
    Thanks,
    Tony

  9. Gigi says:

    I couldn’t have said it any better. When my husband was on a special protocol for his cancer and was given an herbal soup I was told never to microwave it as it would kill all the enzymes. I didn’t heat it either – though I could have brought it to a tepid temperature – it was eaten as a cold soup.

  10. Kelly Budnik says:

    I am not sure about the nutrient retention when microwaving foods but I do know that microwaving anything in plastic , e.g..steaming vegetables is quite dangerous. Plastic at high temperatures has been proven to have cancer related properties. Eat raw vegetables and stay away from the microwave.

    • Dr. Steve says:

      Hi Kelly, thanks for the feedback. Yes, as the article states, the less cooking time the better the food holds it’s nutrient content. Also, I did some research and have come to find that many current plastic containers and food packaging are now designed to withstand microwave radiation. They are labeled “microwave safe” or contain a microwave symbol (three lines of waves, one above the other). However, I (like you) am also concerned about foods microwaved in plastics without these safety standards.

  11. Esme says:

    Both very interesting comments. Surely someone of unbiased opinion only interested in general healthcare / wellbeing could and should investigate further and make their findings known and available to the public who can then make up their own minds. Is that too big an ask?

  12. Barbara Mays says:

    When I was attending the Southwest Institute of Healing Arts (SWIHA) we had a course entitled “Maximum Health in a Toxic World”. The instructor told us the first day of class that we would leave class that day afraid to “eat, drink, or breath”. We all laughed, but it was true. Then he qualified his statement with “but by the end of this course, you will be informed and more able to enter the world of toxins with hope.” And that statement was equally true. We learned about “denaturing” of food in that class. ALL cooked foods, whether on your stove, in your oven, or in a microwave, become denatured, which means “unusable”. Every nutrient in our bodies has a matching, built just for it, receptor. If food has become denatured, the receptor does not recognize it, therefore it cannot be used as a nutrient. I am grateful for your article on microwaving because it caused me to once again revisit the things I learned in that class many years ago. So, before writing a response to your email, I Googled the subject and this is the most helpful article I found. And the most common sense one. I have never been an advocate of “raw food eating”, but this article has made me stop and think and reconsider. Mostly, I didn’t want to go to a raw food style of eating because I LOVE cooked food. but I am 66 now and I really would like to live to be 100+. But to do that healthfully, I should put some new knowledge into practice. I know my response is long, but you really fired up my own research. Thanks. Here is the article: http://www.rawbc.org/articles/enzymes_protein.html

    • Dr. Steve says:

      Hi Barbara, thanks so much for taking time to write in. I appreciate your knowledge and ability to see the true meaning of the article.

  13. Abla says:

    Is RealDose Nutrition safe to take if I am pregnant or expecting to conceive?

    • Dr. Steve says:

      Hi Abla, thanks for writing in. We do not recommend taking RealDose Weightloss Formula No. 1 while pregnant or nursing.

  14. Dr.Jack Tips says:

    What? My comment on your blog has not been “accepted” by the moderator? Oh dear. Sure thought I was contributing and stimulating dialog. I don’t have much patience with censorship, so please remove me from your mailing list. Sorry I didn’t fit in, but hey, one must seek before finding. Like minded people talking amongst themselves is a primary pathway for fallacies to become status quo–what a waste of time. Sorry you could not handle a more thought-provoking comment. Dr. Jack Tips

    • Dr. Steve says:

      Hi Dr Jack, I’m sorry it took so long to reply, but I wanted to give you a quality response, so I took my time answering your previous comment. It’s posted now !

  15. Marsha says:

    Hi… Enjoying the microwave comments, but what about “infrared and convection”? I just purchased a Sharper Image oven… We like it… But is infrared worse??
    Thanks
    Marsha

    P.S. I’ve lost 15 pounds since January 9th…I’m attributing it to RealDose. I’m eating 1200 calories and the pills… I’ve had restricted calories before and believe it or not I didn’t lose, so has to be the pills. I want another 10 lbs. off, if possible.
    Again THANK YOU!!
    PPS… By the way you have a great staff too…. So helpful…keep up the good work team!

    • Dr. Steve says:

      Marsha, thank you so much for the great feedback, and congratulations on losing 15 lbs !!! It certainly sounds like you are on the right track and are becoming thinner and healthier everyday. To touch on your question, I am not very familiar with infrared heating. I have seen advertisements for this oven though. I would say the less heat and cooking time the better, so that our food retains all the nutrients possible. Keep up the hard work !

  16. EttaJean Eagan says:

    Dr. Steve,,
    Thank you for the info RE the microwave. I am on coumadin for recent DVT’s and bilateral PE’s. This occured immediate after an MI. I cannot find the amt of vitamin K in the REALDOSE, in which I’m interested in.

    • Dr. Steve says:

      Hi Etta, thanks you for writing in. Realdose does not contain vitamin K. RealDose Weight Loss Formula has been formulated so that it will not interfere with most medications, including those for the treatment of diabetes, cholesterol, and high blood pressure. However, you should always consult with your physician regarding any potential interaction with RealDose Weight Loss Formula ingredients and the medications that you are taking.

  17. Sheila says:

    Dr. Steve,

    You mention drying food before microwaving it but then you talk about steaming vegetables in the microwave. Doesn’t leaving a little water on the vegetables when you wash them then microwaving them create steam, especially if you use a casserole dish with a lid. I shake the water off, but don’t dry them off.
    Thanks very much.

    • Dr. Steve says:

      Hi Sheila – Cooking your casserole in this way is good. The water left on your vegetables isn’t enough to cause your nutrient intake to decrease. Thanks for writing in.

  18. tom says:

    the issue is not whether the vitamins are better preserved in microwaving. the question is whether new molecules (i.e. substances not found in the original food and not found in conventionally cooked food) are present in the microwaved food.

    too many years ago for me to remember the citation, i read that there are some compounds and alloys that can only be formed by mixing the ingredients and microwaving – i.e. that applying “conventional” heat did not do the trick.

    • Dr. Steve says:

      Hi Tom – Thanks for your comment. You’re right, there are some compounds which are formed under microwaving that are not beneficial for the body. One example I recently heard of is microwaving potatoes for long periods of time causes harmful substances to form. Also, you should never microwave anything plastic, as this also causes toxic compounds. Most of these cases are related to microwaving to the point of extremely high heats. Most conventional microwaving which heats food up to serving temperatures is very safe.

  19. Maria Venn says:

    28-6-12
    Hi Dr Steve & All,
    Thank you for your article & comments, & everyone’s contributions.
    In my role as an Educator with young mothers, I have personal experience in seeing microwaves used for food preparation & handling, including formulas. I am not an advocate of this method, but I offer caution for those who do, & speaking to those with little experience microwaving.
    Here I concure wholeheartedly with a previous comment regarding the intensity of heat when using a microwave. You have no idea how hot the food really is, & one only needs to extrapolate to realise the dangers in using these units for this purpose. The outside may be warm but the inside can be markedly hotter. The variation in temperature can be a health issue regarding different foods.
    It’s by and large not a straightforward issue, & I can hear the dissertation already.
    Also, I agree that we don’t know fully the makeup of molecular structure damage or change as yet, nor its effect on our body. Our cells have markers which determine what is utilised in the food we eat. For this purpose I believe as little use as possible is preferable when little ones are concerned & great care must be taken if one chooses to use this method of warming food.
    I also have some important information I’ve been given from a reputable source, an acquaintance who is a Scientist gave me this cautionary tail – an aside to our discussion, but nonetheless something that is necessary when using modern technology, as it’s not just the food microwaves prepare & its effect on our body, but the whole package. Some may already be aware of this information.
    I was looking at phones at the time & while talking about their dangers the conversation crossed to microwaves.
    Not the aparatus, but the actual “waves “. He discussed the dangers of ‘micro waves’, & told me a way of finding out if a microwave oven leaked radiation – place your handset in the microwave & then call your phone.
    If the phone rings, the microwave is not a ” sealed ” unit & is emitting radiation. These days of mass production & the “throw away society”, not all microwaves are made with the mind to protect the end user.
    He also mentioned that we need to stand a minimum of one metre ( 3’3″ ) away from the unit. It is particularly important for little ones whose brains are most susceptible to the micro waves, & also women of child-bearing age, & gentlemen too, never standing directly in front.
    I treat these units with as much contempt as is required. They are helpful intermittently but not meant for all uses.. Microwave ovens have a minimal role to play in our lives & the information everyone has given is reasonable. Steaming or raw & fresh food is preferable as we are subjected to far too much radiation of varying degrees already.
    Dr Steve, I thank you for the opportunity to express my views.
    Kindest regards to all.

    • Dr. Steve says:

      Hi Marie,
      Thanks for sharing your thoughts. I always like to hear what people think about microwaving foods.

  20. Pam says:

    Decades ago, when microwave ovens first became available I decided never to use them because their packaging/information leaflets carried a warning that milk and milky foods should not be heated or cooked in them because the microwave caused a change in the molecular structure of milk. It is mysterious and somewhat sinister to me that this warning has been ‘lost’ in time – like the way doctors used to prescribe vitamin B tablets and yogurt to support the intestinal flora and fauna when giving anti-biotics, but most don’t bother anymore.

  21. christine says:

    Hi, and thank you for your info. I agree with you for the less we cook, the better. Raw is the best! Have you heard about sensitive cristalysations? A way which allows to see how much life is left in any vegetable or whatsoever, cooked or not, by its beaming.
    It was invented by Ehrenfried Pfeiffer.
    It is a more subtle level than the one of the state of vitamins and nutrients.

    • Dr. Steve says:

      Hi Christine – I have not heard of this previously. Thanks for sharing. Perhaps you could share some material on this?

  22. Greg Marlow says:

    Does microwaving provide enough heat (and time) to destroy toxic lectins contained in some plants? For example, I’m reading that kidney beans need to be soaked for 5 hours then boiled for a minimum of 10 minutes to destroy a quite toxic lectin it contains. I may microwave for less than ten minutes to get the same tenderness but this may leave some of the toxic lectins. And what about frozen green beans? First, I can’t find any definitive info on weather or not they contain toxic lectins and second, I definitely don’t cook them for 10 minutes in the microwave.

    • Dr. Steve says:

      Hi Greg – Good question! I can’t say whether or not microwaving can destroy lectins. My guess would be no because of the time it takes in traditional lectin reducing practices (soaking, fermenting, etc.). Here is a study which looked at how fermentation affected lectin levels:
      http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/09540100220137655#preview
      Green beans on the other hand contain extremely low concentrations of Lectins, those should be fine. Thanks for writing in!

  23. Barbara 2 says:

    Hello Dr. Steve,

    Three things:

    1. Many years ago, I went to a lecture on healthy eating given by a highly reputable practitioner. He said that microwaving denatures food. As an example, he said that a dried bean left alone would sprout even years later. But if a bean were microwaved first, no matter how favorable the conditions were for sprouting, it wouldn’t sprout. The bean was essentially dead. I took this to mean that microwaving food might not be as dangerous as some say, but certainly the life-giving enzymes so important for digestion and other body functions are killed. What do you think?

    2. We seem to be unanimous that microwaving in plastic is bad news. Well, what are the vegetable steaming bags made of – the ones you buy in the grocery store? They seem like plastic to me!

    3. Real Dose Formula 1 – It was like a miracle when I first took it. Bam! My compulsive eating stopped. What a relief! What a joy! Unfortunately, the heartburn that accompanied that got to a point where I had to stop. I was taking way too many Zantac. So here’s my question. Is there any chance of producing the wonderful formula without the black pepper? I think that’s the culprit.

    Thanks Dr. Steve.

    Barbara 2

    • Hi Barbara – Thank you for writing in. For your first question, that experiment with the bean sounds quite interesting and yes microwaves do denature enzymes in food. There are many who believe food enzymes like these are important for our body’s health (ex: Raw enthusiasts) because we also have many enzymes within our cells. However, the truth is all enzymes in food are broken down by the normal digestion of our stomach anyways. We don’t absorb any enzymes of foods regardless of whether they are broken down prior to eating or not.
      Buying vegetables in plastic microwaveable packaging is an issue and though I don’t know the specific types of plastics used, I don’t see why a person can always just put these vegetables in a microwavable glass dish and prepare them that way. This is a good way to avoid this problem all together.
      I’m so sorry to hear of your heartburn effects from the product. For those who have these types of effects, we find that it generally helps to take the product with your food instead of 30 minutes before to help alleviate any uncomfortable effects.

      I hope that helps Barbara! Good luck!

  24. Jaesun says:

    I have read in articles written my several alternative medicine doctors (Wm Douglass, Al Sears) that a major problem with plastics is the fact that they contain BPA which leaches on to the food whether cooked or not. Plastic and metal can interiors are manufactured with BPA which has been reported to increase estrogen levels when ingested. This supposedly can cause major heath problems. Do you have an opinion on that matter?

    • Hi Jaesun – Thanks for writing in. This is very true. Even more frightening is the fact that besides BPA there are other chemicals as well with similar harmful effects, which is why it’s best to avoid these types of foods altogether. Now, there are obviously those who cannot afford fresh produce all the time and must rely on sources of vegetables like frozen and canned, because getting fruits and vegetables from these inexpensive sources is better than getting no fruits and vegetables at all. The order of preference for produce should be Fresh > Frozen > Canned.

      I hope that helps!

  25. ann says:

    there is no doubt in my mind and from research and information coming across my desk that microwave ovens are harmful to the food and therefore to our bodies. it emits radiation and radiation destroys and/or kills. i noticed that i could not see the study you were referring to nor was the website available to see the study. i have a small, inexpensive devise which registers radiation in cell and landline phones, tv, computers, monitors, microwaves, etc and the closer you get to each item you can see the red in it goes all the way up showing danger. beware everyone, microwaving food or drinks alters the molecular structure and is anything but healthy. dont let one study you cannot see for yourself change your opinion. each one of us owes it to ourselves to do the research to know the truth and to stay away from harmful, toxic substances.

    • Hi Ann – Thank you for your comment. I definitely appreciate this idea that microwaves produce radiation that is harmful and it damages our food. However, countless studies on this subject have shown no detrimental effects to this date. I can see where your logic is coming from, that radiation is unnatural and in large enough amounts can kill living things. Yet we just don’t see that in the vast amount of scientific research which has been done today.
      Microwave’s short wave radiation is actually very similar to those used by radios and TV signals, which course through our bodies everyday.

  26. Beverly says:

    You state microwaving food in the plastic bags using them as stemming mechanism is good yet I have heard that using those is bad because of the break down of the plastic during microwaving and emits off chemicals that can leach out of the plastic and into the food, causing cancer, reproductive problems, and other ills. Is there any truth to this, or is it just another Internet-fueled “urban legend”?

    • Hi Beverely – Thank you for your comment. I certainly did not say using plastic bags for steaming is good, quite the opposite. I advise to stay away from using plastic dishes and packaging for steaming. There is a lot of evidence to show plastics are leached from certain packaging and it’s best to instead microwave food in safe ceramic dishes for steaming. I hope that helps!

  27. Donna says:

    Hello, I think my fear is that the cooking intensity of microwave cooking IS high and that’s why its so fast compared to regular cooking where the food cooks slower. It is this extreme heat intensity that kills the nutrients but leaves the minerals there, like you mentioned with spinach. So I agree with you that the less time and less water is true for the microwave, but not that it is less heat intense (or it would take longer). And on another subject, of course a bean won’t grow after being microwaved, just like it won’t grow after being cooked on a regular stove. Cooked beans just don’t reproduce anymore. Just my thoughts and worries. Also I’ve eaten tv dinners for years in plastic containers you just microwaved and that is scary! Also I was covering my food with plastic wrap and microwaving -scary stuff now!

    • Hi Donna,

      Thank you for posting your thoughts to our website. It’s amazing that as consumers we just buy products that are easy to prepare, but we never consider that facts associated with our foods not retaining the nutrients and minerals. This is one of the reason I think it is so important to provide people with scientifically researched information.

  28. Carolyn Clay says:

    Dr. Jonathan Wright, ND, used kinesiology (muscle testing) to check his staff after a microwave in his office was used by one of the staff. He found that anyone within 50 feet of the oven tested weak, even if in another room with no direct path to the kitchenette. I suspect that the issue with these cooking tools will be found to be less of what it does to the food, and more what it does directly to the body.

  29. QUOFU says:

    I think that reach should include: what happens to the plastic wrap or plastic container when it is microwaved
    and should we be concerned about what we eat after the food is microwaved in plastic?
    Thank you

  30. Debi says:

    Eat raw. Don’t lose the live enzymes. No to Microwaves.

  31. yk says:

    My Husband and I owned a microwave but didn’t use it but maybe 1 every month and never to cook food or reheat food or liquid. It was more for when we had company and they wanted to use it. We ate all organic and non gmo food or natural and when organic not available. As well as fresh organic vegeatable and fruit. Used very little chemicals in or around our house.

    He was as healthy as an ox and rarely (twice in our 23 years of marriage) got sick. Yet at the age of 45 with a 3 year old and a child on the way. My husband came down with cancer (none treatable except by disection). He passed away 2 years later of second occurance unoperable.

    So this being said, avoidance of gmo microwave and chemicals in food can benit yet when all is said and done, when it is our time no matter how much we do to avoid death early and sickness. The end result at the time appointment is the same.

    Live well enjoy life and laugh. Find what truly matters in life and follow your hearts.

  32. tanya says:

    Sorry, but this article is very suspicious to me. Anything using Dieticians as an authority is suspect. These people are hostile to holistic nutritionists and supported sugar as a positive in the diet. This s0-calle profession supports the big Ag agenda all too often and has no backbone in standing up to the FDA. And as per usual, so-called research is so lopsided that it cannot be trusted. Several others on this blog have already noted that there many missing links to this research that touts microwaves. There is no mention of the increased exposure to EMFs in our lives. There is no question about how the body deals with foods treated by radiation. This MD even promotes, in the article, using plastic bags with their unknown chemical composition and their leaching into the food and air.

    I learned a long time ago that if we are supporting health, do it as naturally as possible. There is nothing natural about microwaves when it comes to food.

  33. Thom Zee says:

    I agree with yk “when it is our time”, I have been told over the last 23 years with multiple and various genetically diseases and hospitalization that I would be ‘off the planet’. Last year it came as no major surprize that I had a rarely seen disease, V.V.A.D. (vision variant of Alzheimer’s disease); also known as Benson symdrome; it could have been spotted in 1999. After utilizing various alternative healthy modalities allow with needed medicial attention for 7 diseases managed, and a lifetime eating correctly for nearly 69; I realized that I got too Wrangler’s jeans/genes; instead one great pair of Levi’s. Learning to laugh is essential and embrace death by doing the right thing even when no one is looking; while acknowledging biblical teachings with one at the forefront of Torah “it is not what we put into our mouth that defiles us; it is what comes out of it (tarnish by faulthood gossip, sully brightness, profane, envious gossip)! As the kid told his father what the Bible mean = Basic Instructions Before Leaving Earth. That would include living healthy in the mind as much as possible along with nutrition. Eat, Drink and be Merry, we are at war with all elements. No way to get out physically alive; only our spirit.

  34. Hello. To make everything simplier why not just steam everythng with a steamer? I do this with not only vegetables but potatoes and some meat and you name it. My little steamer has a place in the center to put spices which are steamed into the food. I use a microwave for heating left overs and I try not to have many of those. Steamed veggies retain everything they start with before cookiing, or amost, I think.

    Anyway…live and learn and pass it on. Thanks for a very interesting subject.

    Sylvia

  35. Goldie says:

    Thanks so much for article on Microwave cooking, there has been so much said against using Microwave for
    cooking. Personally I prefer to use the steamer.I. appreciate your researching this matter and sharing it with others.
    Thanks again

  36. Brian Mahoney says:

    There is a good article at Mercola.com about about microwaving. Having studied physics at Purdue, I would suspect there may be dna and other cellular damage due to resonant frequency effect. Go to youtube and search “Galloping Gertie” (the Tacoma Narrows Bridge) for a demonstration of this effect. This is also used in Rife Frequency Generator technology to destroy harmfull microbes, alledgedly.

  37. Harvey B Vedder says:

    I stopped using microwaves about 40 yrs ago after reading that frozen blood from a blood bank, heated with microwaves was found to be deleterious and the practice stopped. Mention was made of altered chirality (right vs. left spin) of molecules after microwaving.
    I lack the chemical and physics training necessary to understand the putative effects of reversed chirality and never did my due diligence on this subject.
    Can anyone knowledgeably address this issue which seems to be absent from all the comments so far.
    Also, has anyone checked with the Swedish researchers and gov’t agency that (supposedly) has banned microwaves for their reasons?

    • Hello Harvey,

      Thank you for your comment and for sharing thoughts about microwave ovens. For further research on the topic and to clear up your questions, search for the comment left by Ellie Wells on this article. She posted an extensive article that discusses microwaves and the history of research surrounding it. I hope you find it helpful.

  38. Ellie Wells says:

    Radiation Ovens – The Proven
    Dangers Of Microwaves
    By Anthony Wayne and Lawrence Newell
    Is it possible that millions of people are ignorantly sacrificing their health in exchange for the convenience of microwave ovens? Why did the Soviet Union ban the use of microwave ovens in 1976? Who invented microwave ovens, and why? The answers to these questions may shock you into throwing your microwave oven in the trash.

    Over 90% of American homes have microwave ovens used for meal preparation. Because microwave ovens are so convenient and energy efficient, as compared to conventional ovens, very few homes or restaurants are without them. In general, people believe that whatever a microwave oven does to foods cooked in it doesn’t have any negative effect on either the food or them. Of course, if microwave ovens were really harmful, our government would never allow them on the market, would they? Would they? Regardless of what has been “officially” released concerning microwave ovens, we have personally stopped using ours based on the research facts outlined in this article.

    The purpose of this report is to show proof — evidence — that microwave cooking is not natural, nor healthy, and is far more dangerous to the human body than anyone could imagine. However, the microwave oven manufacturers, Washington City politics, and plain old human nature are suppressing the facts and evidence. Because of this, people are continuing to microwave their food — in blissful ignorance — without knowing the effects and danger of doing so.

    HOW DO MICROWAVE OVENS WORK?

    Microwaves are a form of electromagnetic energy, like light waves or radio waves, and occupy a part of the electromagnetic spectrum of power, or energy. Microwaves are very short waves of electromagnetic energy that travel at the speed of light (186,282 miles per second). In our modern technological age, microwaves are used to relay long distance telephone signals, television programs, and computer information across the earth or to a satellite in space. But the microwave is most familiar to us as an energy source for cooking food.

    Every microwave oven contains a magnetron, a tube in which electrons are affected by magnetic and electric fields in such a way as to produce micro wavelength radiation at about 2450 Mega Hertz (MHz) or 2.45 Giga Hertz (GHz). This microwave radiation interacts with the molecules in food. All wave energy changes polarity from positive to negative with each cycle of the wave. In microwaves, these polarity changes happen millions of times every second. Food molecules — especially the molecules of water — have a positive and negative end in the same way a magnet has a north and a south polarity.

    In commercial models, the oven has a power input of about 1000 watts of alternating current. As these microwaves generated from the magnetron bombard the food, they cause the polar molecules to rotate at the same frequency millions of times a second. All this agitation creates molecular friction, which heats up the food. The friction also causes substantial damage to the surrounding molecules, often tearing them apart or forcefully deforming them. The scientific name for this deformation is “structural isomerism”.

    By comparison, microwaves from the sun are based on principles of pulsed direct current (DC) that don’t create frictional heat; microwave ovens use alternating current (AC) creating frictional heat. A microwave oven produces a spiked wavelength of energy with all the power going into only one narrow frequency of the energy spectrum. Energy from the sun operates in a wide frequency spectrum.

    Many terms are used in describing electromagnetic waves, such as wavelength, amplitude, cycle and frequency:

    WAVELENGTH determines the type of radiation, i.e. radio, X-ray, ultraviolet, visible, infrared, etc.

    AMPLITUDE determines the extent of movement measured from the starting point.

    CYCLE determines the unit of frequency, such as cycles per second, Hertz, Hz, or cycles/second.

    FREQUENCY determines the number of occurrences within a given time period (usually 1 second); The number of occurrences of a recurring process per unit of time, i.e. the number of repetitions of cycles per second.

    RADIATION = SPREADING ENERGY WITH ELECTROMAGNETIC WAVES

    Radiation, as defined by physics terminology, is “the electromagnetic waves emitted by the atoms and molecules of a radioactive substance as a result of nuclear decay.” Radiation causes ionization, which is what occurs when a neutral atom gains or loses electrons. In simpler terms, a microwave oven decays and changes the molecular structure of the food by the process of radiation. Had the manufacturers accurately called them “radiation ovens”, it’s doubtful they would have ever sold one, but that’s exactly what a microwave oven is.

    We’ve all been told that microwaving food is not the same as irradiating it (radiation “treatment”). The two processes are supposed to use completely different waves of energy and at different intensities. No FDA or officially released government studies have proven current microwaving usage to be harmful, but we all know that the validity of studies can be — and are sometimes deliberately — limiting. Many of these studies are later proven to be inaccurate. As consumers, we’re supposed to have a certain degree of common sense to use in judgment.

    Take the example of eggs and how they were “proven” to be so harmful to our health in the late 1960′s. This brought about imitation egg products and big profits for the manufacturers, while egg farms went broke. Now, recent government sponsored studies are saying that eggs are not bad for us after all. So, whom should we believe and what criteria should we use to decide matters concerning our health? Since it’s currently published that microwaves — purportedly — don’t leak into the environment, when properly used and with approved design, the decision lies with each consumer as to whether or not you choose to eat food heated by a microwave oven or even purchase one in the first place.

    MOTHERLY INSTINCTS ARE RIGHT

    On a more humorous side, the “sixth sense” every mother has is impossible to argue with. Have you ever tried it? Children will never win against a mother’s intuition. It’s like trying to argue with the arm — appearing out of nowhere — that pinned you to the back of the seat when your mother slammed on the brakes.

    Many of us come from a generation where mothers and grandmothers have distrusted the modern “inside out” cooking they claimed was “not suitable” for most foods. My mother refused to even try baking anything in a microwave. She also didn’t like the way a cup of coffee tasted when heated in a microwave oven. I have to fully agree and can’t argue either fact. Her own common sense and instincts told her that there was no way microwave cooking could be natural nor make foods “taste they way they’re supposed to”. Reluctantly, even my mother succumbed to re-heating leftovers in a microwave due to her work schedule before she retired.

    Many others feel the same way, but they’re considered an “old fashioned” minority dating back to before the 1970′s when microwaves first overwhelmed the market. Like most young adults at the time, as microwave ovens became commonplace, I chose to ignore my mother’s intuitive wisdom and joined the majority who believed microwave cooking was far too convenient to ever believe anything could be wrong with it. Chalk one up for mom’s perception, because even though she didn’t know the scientific, technical, or health reasons why, she just knew that microwave ovens were not good based on how foods tasted when they were cooked in them. She didn’t like the way the texture of the microwaved food changed either.

    MICROWAVES UNSAFE FOR BABY’S MILK

    A number of warnings have been made public, but have been barely noticed. For example, Young Families, the Minnesota Extension Service of the University of Minnesota, published the following in 1989:

    “Although microwaves heat food quickly, they are not recommended for heating a baby’s bottle. The bottle may seem cool to the touch, but the liquid inside may become extremely hot and could burn the baby’s mouth and throat. Also, the buildup of steam in a closed container, such as a baby bottle, could cause it to explode. Heating the bottle in a microwave can cause slight changes in the milk. In infant formulas, there may be a loss of some vitamins. In expressed breast milk, some protective properties may be destroyed. Warming a bottle by holding it under tap water, or by setting it in a bowl of warm water, then testing it on your wrist before feeding may take a few minutes longer, but it is much safer.”

    Dr. Lita Lee of Hawaii reported in the December 9, 1989 Lancet:

    “Microwaving baby formulas converted certain trans-amino acids into their synthetic cis-isomers. Synthetic isomers, whether cis-amino acids or trans-fatty acids, are not biologically active. Further, one of the amino acids, L-proline, was converted to its d-isomer, which is known to be neurotoxic (poisonous to the nervous system) and nephrotoxic (poisonous to the kidneys). It’s bad enough that many babies are not nursed, but now they are given fake milk (baby formula) made even more toxic via microwaving.”

    MICROWAVED BLOOD KILLS PATIENT

    In 1991, there was a lawsuit in Oklahoma concerning the hospital use of a microwave oven to warm blood needed in a transfusion. The case involved a hip surgery patient, Norma Levitt, who died from a simple blood transfusion. It seems the nurse had warmed the blood in a microwave oven. This tragedy makes it very apparent that there’s much more to “heating” with microwaves than we’ve been led to believe. Blood for transfusions is routinely warmed, but not in microwave ovens. In the case of Mrs. Levitt, the microwaving altered the blood and it killed her.

    It’s very obvious that this form of microwave radiation “heating” does something to the substances it heats. It’s also becoming quite apparent that people who process food in a microwave oven are also ingesting these “unknowns”.

    Because the body is electrochemical in nature, any force that disrupts or changes human electrochemical events will affect the physiology of the body. This is further described in Robert O. Becker’s book, The Body Electric, and in Ellen Sugarman’s book, Warning, the Electricity Around You May Be Hazardous to Your Health.

    SCIENTIFIC EVIDENCE AND FACTS

    In Comparative Study of Food Prepared Conventionally and in the Microwave Oven, published by Raum & Zelt in 1992, at 3(2): 43, it states :

    “A basic hypothesis of natural medicine states that the introduction into the human body of molecules and energies, to which it is not accustomed, is much more likely to cause harm than good. Microwaved food contains both molecules and energies not present in food cooked in the way humans have been cooking food since the discovery of fire. Microwave energy from the sun and other stars is direct current based. Artificially produced microwaves, including those in ovens, are produced from alternating current and force a billion or more polarity reversals per second in every food molecule they hit. Production of unnatural molecules is inevitable. Naturally occurring amino acids have been observed to undergo isomeric changes (changes in shape morphing) as well as transformation into toxic forms, under the impact of microwaves produced in ovens.

    One short-term study found significant and disturbing changes in the blood of individuals consuming microwaved milk and vegetables. Eight volunteers ate various combinations of the same foods cooked different ways. All foods that were processed through the microwave ovens caused changes in the blood of the volunteers. Hemoglobin levels decreased and over all white cell levels and cholesterol levels increased. Lymphocytes decreased.

    Luminescent (light-emitting) bacteria were employed to detect energetic changes in the blood. Significant increases were found in the luminescence of these bacteria when exposed to blood serum obtained after the consumption of microwaved food.”

    THE SWISS CLINICAL STUDY

    Dr. Hans Ulrich Hertel, who is now retired, worked as a food scientist for many years with one of the major Swiss food companies that do business on a global scale. A few years ago, he was fired from his job for questioning certain processing procedures that denatured the food.

    In 1991, he and a Lausanne University professor published a research paper indicating that food cooked in microwave ovens could pose a greater risk to health than food cooked by conventional means. An article also appeared in issue 19 of the Journal Franz Weber in which it was stated that the consumption of food cooked in microwave ovens had cancerous effects on the blood. The research paper itself followed the article. On the cover of the magazine there was a picture of the Grim Reaper holding a microwave oven in one of his hands.

    Dr. Hertel was the first scientist to conceive and carry out a quality clinical study on the effects microwaved nutrients have on the blood and physiology of the human body. His small but well controlled study showed the degenerative force produced in microwave ovens and the food processed in them. The scientific conclusion showed that microwave cooking changed the nutrients in the food; and, changes took place in the participants’ blood that could cause deterioration in the human system. Hertel’s scientific study was done along with Dr. Bernard H. Blanc of the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology and the University Institute for Biochemistry.

    In intervals of two to five days, the volunteers in the study received one of the following food variants on an empty stomach: (1) raw milk; (2) the same milk conventionally cooked; (3) pasteurized milk; (4) the same raw milks cooked in a microwave oven; (5) raw vegetables from an organic farm; (6) the same vegetables cooked conventionally; (7) the same vegetables frozen and defrosted in a microwave oven; and (8) the same vegetables cooked in the microwave oven. Once the volunteers were isolated, blood samples were taken from every volunteer immediately before eating. Then, blood samples were taken at defined intervals after eating from the above milk or vegetable preparations.

    Significant changes were discovered in the blood samples from the intervals following the foods cooked in the microwave oven. These changes included a decrease in all hemoglobin and cholesterol values, especially the ratio of HDL (good cholesterol) and LDL (bad cholesterol) values. Lymphocytes (white blood cells) showed a more distinct short-term decrease following the intake of microwaved food than after the intake of all the other variants. Each of these indicators pointed to degeneration. Additionally, there was a highly significant association between the amount of microwave energy in the test foods and the luminous power of luminescent bacteria exposed to serum from test persons who ate that food. This led Dr. Hertel to the conclusion that such technically derived energies may, indeed, be passed along to man inductively via eating microwaved food.

    According to Dr. Hertel,

    “Leukocytosis, which cannot be accounted for by normal daily deviations, is taken very seriously by hemotologists. Leukocytes are often signs of pathogenic effects on the living system, such as poisoning and cell damage. The increase of leukocytes with the microwaved foods were more pronounced than with all the other variants. It appears that these marked increases were caused entirely by ingesting the microwaved substances.

    This process is based on physical principles and has already been confirmed in the literature. The apparent additional energy exhibited by the luminescent bacteria was merely an extra confirmation. There is extensive scientific literature concerning the hazardous effects of direct microwave radiation on living systems. It is astonishing, therefore, to realize how little effort has been taken to replace this detrimental technique of microwaves with technology more in accordance with nature. Technically produced microwaves are based on the principle of alternating current. Atoms, molecules, and cells hit by this hard electromagnetic radiation are forced to reverse polarity 1-100 billion times a second. There are no atoms, molecules or cells of any organic system able to withstand such a violent, destructive power for any extended period of time, not even in the low energy range of milliwatts.

    Of all the natural substances — which are polar — the oxygen of water molecules reacts most sensitively. This is how microwave cooking heat is generated — friction from this violence in water molecules. Structures of molecules are torn apart, molecules are forcefully deformed, called structural isomerism, and thus become impaired in quality. This is contrary to conventional heating of food where heat transfers convectionally from without to within. Cooking by microwaves begins within the cells and molecules where water is present and where the energy is transformed into frictional heat.

    In addition to the violent frictional heat effects, called thermic effects, there are also athermic effects which have hardly ever been taken into account. These athermic effects are not presently measurable, but they can also deform the structures of molecules and have qualitative consequences. For example the weakening of cell membranes by microwaves is used in the field of gene altering technology. Because of the force involved, the cells are actually broken, thereby neutralizing the electrical potentials, the very life of the cells, between the outer and inner side of the cell membranes. Impaired cells become easy prey for viruses, fungi and other microorganisms. The natural repair mechanisms are suppressed and cells are forced to adapt to a state of energy emergency — they switch from aerobic to anaerobic respiration. Instead of water and carbon dioxide, the cell poisons hydrogen peroxide and carbon monoxide are produced.”

    The same violent deformations that occur in our bodies, when we are directly exposed to radar or microwaves, also occur in the molecules of foods cooked in a microwave oven. This radiation results in the destruction and deformation of food molecules. Microwaving also creates new compounds, called radiolytic compounds, which are unknown fusions not found in nature. Radiolytic compounds are created by molecular decomposition — decay — as a direct result of radiation.

    Microwave oven manufacturers insist that microwaved and irradiated foods do not have any significantly higher radiolytic compounds than do broiled, baked or other conventionally cooked foods. The scientific clinical evidence presented here has shown that this is simply a lie. In America, neither universities nor the federal government have conducted any tests concerning the effects on our bodies from eating microwaved foods. Isn’t that a bit odd? They’re more concerned with studies on what happens if the door on a microwave oven doesn’t close properly. Once again, common sense tells us that their attention should be centered on what happens to food cooked inside a microwave oven. Since people ingest this altered food, shouldn’t there be concern for how the same decayed molecules will affect our own human biological cell structure?

    INDUSTRY’S ACTION TO HIDE THE TRUTH

    As soon as Doctors Hertel and Blanc published their results, the authorities reacted. A powerful trade organization, the Swiss Association of Dealers for Electro-apparatuses for Households and Industry, known as FEA, struck swiftly in 1992. They forced the President of the Court of Seftigen, Canton of Bern, to issue a “gag order” against Drs. Hertel and Blanc. In March 1993, Dr. Hertel was convicted for “interfering with commerce” and prohibited from further publishing his results. However, Dr. Hertel stood his ground and fought this decision over the years.

    Not long ago, this decision was reversed in a judgment delivered in Strasbourg, Austria, on August 25, 1998. The European Court of Human Rights held that there had been a violation of Hertel’s rights in the 1993 decision. The European Court of Human Rights also ruled that the “gag order” issued by the Swiss court in 1992 against Dr. Hertel, prohibiting him from declaring that microwave ovens are dangerous to human health, was contrary to the right to freedom of expression. In addition, Switzerland was ordered to pay Dr. Hertel compensation.

    WHO INVENTED MICROWAVE OVENS?

    The Nazis, for use in their mobile support operations, originally developed microwave “radiomissor” cooking ovens to be used for the invasion of Russia. By being able to utilize electronic equipment for preparation of meals on a mass scale, the logistical problem of cooking fuels would have been eliminated, as well as the convenience of producing edible products in a greatly reduced time-factor.

    After the war, the Allies discovered medical research done by the Germans on microwave ovens. These documents, along with some working microwave ovens, were transferred to the United States War Department and classified for reference and “further scientific investigation.” The Russians had also retrieved some microwave ovens and now have thorough research on their biological effects. As a result, their use was outlawed in the Soviet Union. The Soviets issued an international warning on the health hazards, both biological and environmental, of microwave ovens and similar frequency electronic devices.

    Other Eastern European scientists also reported the harmful effects of microwave radiation and set up strict environmental limits for their usage. The United States has not accepted the European reports of harmful effects, even though the EPA estimates that radio frequency and microwave radiation sources in America are increasing at 15% per year.

    CARCINOGENS IN MICROWAVED FOOD

    In Dr. Lita Lee’s book, Health Effects of Microwave Radiation — Microwave Ovens, and in the March and September 1991 issues of Earthletter, she stated that every microwave oven leaks electro-magnetic radiation, harms food, and converts substances cooked in it to dangerous organ-toxic and carcinogenic products. Further research summarized in this article reveal that microwave ovens are far more harmful than previously imagined.

    The following is a summary of the Russian investigations published by the Atlantis Raising Educational Center in Portland, Oregon. Carcinogens were formed in virtually all foods tested. No test food was subjected to more microwaving than necessary to accomplish the purpose, i.e., cooking, thawing, or heating to insure sanitary ingestion. Here’s a summary of some of the results:

    + Microwaving prepared meats sufficiently to insure sanitary ingestion caused formation of d-Nitrosodienthanolamines, a well-known carcinogen.

    + Microwaving milk and cereal grains converted some of their amino acids into carcinogens.

    + Thawing frozen fruits converted their glucoside and galactoside containing fractions into carcinogenic substances.

    + Extremely short exposure of raw, cooked or frozen vegetables converted their plant alkaloids into carcinogens.

    + Carcinogenic free radicals were formed in microwaved plants, especially root vegetables.

    DECREASE IN NUTRITIONAL VALUE

    Russian researchers also reported a marked acceleration of structural degradation leading to a decreased food value of 60 to 90% in all foods tested. Among the changes observed were:

    + Deceased bio-availability of vitamin B complex, vitamin C, vitamin E, essential minerals and lipotropics factors in all food tested.

    + Various kinds of damaged to many plant substances, such as alkaloids, glucosides, galactosides and nitrilosides.

    + The degradation of nucleo-proteins in meats.

    MICROWAVE SICKNESS IS DISCOVERED

    The Russians did research on thousands of workers who had been exposed to microwaves during the development of radar in the 1950′s. Their research showed health problems so serious that the Russians set strict limits of 10 microwatts exposure for workers and one microwatt for civilians.

    In Robert O. Becker’s book, The Body Electric, he described Russian research on the health effects of microwave radiation, which they called “microwave sickness.” On page 314, Becker states:

    “It’s [Microwave sickness] first signs are low blood pressure and slow pulse. The later and most common manifestations are chronic excitation of the sympathetic nervous system [stress syndrome] and high blood pressure. This phase also often includes headache, dizziness, eye pain, sleeplessness, irritability, anxiety, stomach pain, nervous tension, inability to concentrate, hair loss, plus an increased incidence of appendicitis, cataracts, reproductive problems, and cancer. The chronic symptoms are eventually succeeded by crisis of adrenal exhaustion and ischemic heart disease [the blockage of coronary arteries and heart attacks].”

    According to Dr. Lee, changes are observed in the blood chemistries and the rates of certain diseases among consumers of microwaved foods. The symptoms above can easily be caused by the observations shown below. The following is a sample of these changes:

    + Lymphatic disorders were observed, leading to decreased ability to prevent certain types of cancers.

    + An increased rate of cancer cell formation was observed in the blood.

    + Increased rates of stomach and intestinal cancers were observed.

    + Higher rates of digestive disorders and a gradual breakdown of the systems of elimination were observed.

    MICROWAVE RESEARCH CONCLUSIONS

    The following were the most significant German and Russian research operations facilities concerning the biological effects of microwaves:

    The initial research conducted by the Germans during the Barbarossa military campaign, at the Humbolt-Universitat zu Berlin (1942-1943); and,

    From 1957 and up to the present [until the end of the cold war], the Russian research operations were conducted at: the Institute of Radio Technology at Kinsk, Byelorussian Autonomous Region; and, at the Institute of Radio Technology at Rajasthan in the Rossiskaja Autonomous Region, both in the Union of the Soviet Socialist Republics.

    In most cases, the foods used for research analysis were exposed to microwave propagation at an energy potential of 100 kilowatts/cm3/second, to the point considered acceptable for sanitary, normal ingestion. The effects noted by both German and Russian researchers is presented in three categories:

    CATEGORY I, Cancer-Causing Effects CATEGORY II, Nutritive Destruction of Foods CATEGORY III, Biological Effects of Exposure

    CATEGORY I

    CANCER-CAUSING EFFECTS

    [The first two points of Category I are not readable from our report copy. The remainder of the report is intact.]

    3. Creation of a “binding effect” to radioactivity in the atmosphere, thus causing a marked increase in the amount of alpha and beta particle saturation in foods;

    4. Creation of cancer causing agents within protein hydrolysate compounds* in milk and cereal grains [*these are natural proteins that are split into unnatural fragments by the addition of water];

    5. Alteration of elemental food-substances, causing disorders in the digestive system by unstable catabolism* of foods subjected to microwaves [* the metabolic breakdown process];

    6. Due to chemical alterations within food substances, malfunctions were observed within the lymphatic systems [absorbent vessels], causing a degeneration of the immune potentials of the body to protect against certain forms of neoplastics [abnormal growths of tissue];

    7. Ingestion of microwaved foods caused a higher percentage of cancerous cells within the blood serum [cytomas -- cell tumors such as sarcoma];

    8. Microwave emissions caused alteration in the catabolic [metabolic breakdown] behavior of glucoside [hydrolyzed dextrose] and galactoside [oxidized alcohol] elements within frozen fruits when thawed in this manner;

    9. Microwave emission caused alteration of the catabolic [metabolic breakdown] behavior of plant alkaloids [organic nitrogen based elements] when raw, cooked, or frozen vegetables were exposed for even extremely short durations;

    10. Cancer causing free radicals [highly reactive incomplete molecules] were formed within certain trace mineral molecular formations in plant substances, and in particular, raw root-vegetables; and,

    11. In a statistically high percentage of persons, microwaved foods caused stomach and intestinal cancerous growths, as well as a general degeneration of peripheral cellular tissues, with a gradual breakdown of the function of the digestive and excretive systems.

    CATEGORY II

    DECREASE IN FOOD VALUE

    Microwave exposure caused significant decreases in the nutritive value of all foods researched. The following are the most important findings:

    1. A decrease in the bioavailability [capability of the body to utilize the nutriment] of B-complex vitamins, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, essential minerals and lipotropics in all foods;

    2. A loss of 60-90% of the vital energy field content of all tested foods;

    3. A reduction in the metabolic behavior and integration process capability of alkaloids [organic nitrogen based elements], glucosides and galactosides, and nitrilosides;

    4. A destruction of the nutritive value of nucleoproteins in meats;

    5. A marked acceleration of structural disintegration in all foods.

    CATEGORY III

    BIOLOGICAL EFFECTS OF EXPOSURE

    Exposure to microwave emissions also had an unpredictably negative effect upon the general biological welfare of humans. This was not discovered until the Russians experimented with highly sophisticated equipment and discovered that a human did not even need to ingest the material substance of the microwaved food substances: that even exposure to the energy-field itself was sufficient to cause such adverse side effects that the use of any such microwave apparatus was forbidden in 1976 by Soviet state law.

    The following are the enumerated effects:

    1. A breakdown of the human “life-energy field” in those who were exposed to microwave ovens while in operation, with side-effects to the human energy field of increasingly longer duration;

    2. A degeneration of the cellular voltage parallels during the process of using the apparatus, especially in the blood and lymphatic areas;

    3. A degeneration and destabilization of the external energy activated potentials of food utilization within the processes of human metabolism;

    4. A degeneration and destabilization of internal cellular membrane potentials while transferring catabolic [metabolic breakdown] processes into the blood serum from the digestive process;

    5. Degeneration and circuit breakdowns of electrical nerve impulses within the junction potentials of the cerebrum [the front portion of the brain where thought and higher functions reside];

    6. A degeneration and breakdown of nerve electrical circuits and loss of energy field symmetry in the neuroplexuses [nerve centers] both in the front and the rear of the central and autonomic nervous systems;

    7. Loss of balance and circuiting of the bioelectric strengths within the ascending reticular activating system [the system which controls the function of consciousness];

    8. A long term cumulative loss of vital energies within humans, animals and plants that were located within a 500-meter radius of the operational equipment;

    9. Long lasting residual effects of magnetic “deposits” were located throughout the nervous system and lymphatic system;

    10. A destabilization and interruption in the production of hormones and maintenance of hormonal balance in males and females;

    11. Markedly higher levels of brainwave disturbance in the alpha, theta, and delta wave signal patterns of persons exposed to microwave emission fields, and;

    12. Because of this brainwave disturbance, negative psychological effects were noted, including loss of memory, loss of ability to concentrate, suppressed emotional threshold, deceleration of intellective processes, and interruptive sleep episodes in a statistically higher percentage of individuals subjected to continual range emissive field effects of microwave apparatus, either in cooking apparatus or in transmission stations.

    FORENSIC RESEARCH CONCLUSIONS

    From the twenty-eight above enumerated indications, the use of microwave apparatus is definitely not advisable; and, with the decision of the Soviet government in 1976, present scientific opinion in many countries concerning the use of such apparatus is clearly in evidence.

    Due to the problem of random magnetic residulation and binding within the biological systems of the body (Category III:9), which can ultimately effect the neurological systems, primarily the brain and neuroplexuses (nerve centers), long term depolarization of tissue neuroelectric circuits can result. Because these effects can cause virtually irreversible damage to the neuroelectrical integrity of the various components of the nervous system (I. R. Luria, Novosibirsk 1975a), ingestion of microwaved foods is clearly contraindicated in all respects. Their magnetic residual effect can render the pyschoneural receptor components of the brain more subject to influence psychologically by artificially induced microwave radio frequency fields from transmission stations and TV relay-networks.

    The theoretical possibility of psycho telemetric influence (the capability of affecting human behavior by transmitted radio signals at controlled frequencies) has been suggested by Soviet neuropsychological investigations at Uralyera and Novosibirsk (Luria and Perov, 1974a, 1975c, 1976a), which can cause involuntary subliminal psychological energy field compliance to operative microwave apparatus.

    FORENSIC RESEARCH DOCUMENT Prepared By: William P. Kopp A. R. E. C. Research Operations TO61-7R10/10-77F05 RELEASE PRIORITY: CLASS I ROO1a

    TEN REASONS TO THROW OUT YOUR MICROWAVE OVEN

    From the conclusions of the Swiss, Russian and German scientific clinical studies, we can no longer ignore the microwave oven sitting in our kitchens. Based on this research, we will conclude this article with the following:

    1). Continually eating food processed from a microwave oven causes long term — permanent — brain damage by “shorting out” electrical impulses in the brain [de-polarizing or de-magnetizing the brain tissue].

    2). The human body cannot metabolize [break down] the unknown by-products created in microwaved food.

    3). Male and female hormone production is shut down and/or altered by continually eating microwaved foods.

    4). The effects of microwaved food by-products are residual [long term, permanent] within the human body.

    5). Minerals, vitamins, and nutrients of all microwaved food is reduced or altered so that the human body gets little or no benefit, or the human body absorbs altered compounds that cannot be broken down.

    6). The minerals in vegetables are altered into cancerous free radicals when cooked in microwave ovens.

    7). Microwaved foods cause stomach and intestinal cancerous growths [tumors]. This may explain the rapidly increased rate of colon cancer in America.

    8). The prolonged eating of microwaved foods causes cancerous cells to increase in human blood.

    9). Continual ingestion of microwaved food causes immune system deficiencies through lymph gland and blood serum alterations.

    10). Eating microwaved food causes loss of memory, concentration, emotional instability, and a decrease of intelligence.

    HAVE YOU TOSSED OUT YOUR MICROWAVE OVEN YET?

    The use of artificial microwave transmissions for subliminal psychological control, a.k.a. “brainwashing”, has also been proven. We’re attempting to obtain copies of the 1970′s Russian research documents and results written by Drs. Luria and Perov specifying their clinical experiments in this area.

    Written by Anthony Wayne and Lawrence Newell

    International common Law Copyright 2000 by The Christian Law Institute

    • Hello Ellie,

      Thank you for sharing with us the extensive article that Anthony Wayne and Lawrence Newell researched on microwave oven use. It is always helpful to be an educated consumer.

      Please keep in mind that the main point of the article was to prepare your food in ways that help to maintain the plentiful nutrients found in it. Cooking for a shorter period of time and using less water as you are cooking are two ways to ensure that your food will give you the most nutritional benefit. Living in modern times with modern conveniences does pose a trade-off, at times. To paraphrase what Joel Furhman, M.D. says in “Eat to Live”, it may be better to steam your vegetables in the microwave for a little bit, than to boil them on the cook top until they are mush. Thank you for your care and concern and for joining in the conversation. You are appreciated! May you be blessed on your journey to optimal health!

      • Joe says:

        Dear Dr. Sisskind

        I have a question about your Real Reds . Is it suitable for Vegitarians and vegans ? Is the Lipase used from a vegital source .

        Thanks

        Joe

  39. Malika says:

    Doesn’t the microwave take the moisture out of food? Examples: bread, eggs

    • Hi Malika,

      Thank you for sharing your concerns with us! Yes, there is a slight chance that evaporation may occur when you heat your food in the microwave. However, in an effort to preserve moisture content your food or meal, you can turn down the intensity of your appliance from high to medium even low, when appropriate. I hope this helps! Have a healthy day!

  40. Hava Gurevich says:

    Thank you for you no-nonsense information! I do everything I can to be and eat healthy, and sometimes it gets hard to separate real information/real research from the heap of available online resources. I have always felt that there is nothing wrong with using the microwave, it is the plastic containers that are a problem!!

  41. Natalie says:

    That is good to know. I just wonder about the waves after microwaving your food, are they bad for you ?

    • Hello Natalie,

      One of the reasons that microwaves can be used for cooking is that they are reflected by metal. This fact is of importance when considering the safety of microwaves. A microwave oven is an enclosed box made of metal. When the oven is on microwaves are produced by an electron tube called a magnetron. The microwaves are reflected by the metal interior of the oven and are used to cook the food. Even the ventilation grilles are shielded, so the energy cannot escape.

      Microwave ovens have a permissible leakage of 5 milliwatts per square centrimeter. Even so, if a microwave oven would leak energy, the level of microwave energy decreases rapidly with distance. An arms length away from the microwave, the amount of microwave energy would be decreased to 1/1000 milliwatts per square centmeter, far below the 5 milliwatts that have been deemed safe.

      When the microwave oven is off, there are no microwaves being produced, so that can additionally diminish any potential concerns. Healthy day to you!

  42. Sable Bobier says:

    I I have not read every one of the posts, so please forgive me if this question has already been asked. My concern is that microwaving changes the molecular structure of food. Is that true? Does it matter? Has it been proven one way or the other. With all of the concern over GMO foods, I think we need to think about this. I’ll welcome your feedback.

    • Hi Sable,

      Thank you for writing in and for sharing your concerns with us! A food microwave does not change the molecular structure of any food item placed inside it. Instead, it excites the water molecules which in turn causes friction and heats your meal quickly. The quick cooking time allows most of the nutrients to stay in your food and does not get destroyed by the heating process.

      I understand and share your concerns with regards to GMO foods. However, microwaving your fresh vegetables will not in anyway change their molecular structure nor genetic make up. Only water molecules are excited to produce heat. Hope this helps! Happy Holidays and have a healthy day!

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