Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Is it ok to microwave stuff in plastic bags? -from Mrs. Jamison's high school class in East Dubuque, IL

Plastic bags and saran wrap are in general not designed to withstand the higher temperatures of heating food. They can melt or release trace amounts of plastic chemicals onto your food. However, don't panic, it's unlikely that you'll be harmed from doing this a couple times. In fact, whole generations of people raised in the 80's and 90's warmed up their food in plastic, and they're still alive and kicking just fine. However, recently chemicals like bisphenol-A (BPA) have been found to leach out of plasticware and bottles. These could be especially harmful to unborn children and young children, who are still rapidly developing.  The safest options are glass and ceramic, as they are most chemically inert and temperature sturdy.  I have an old plastic Nalgene bottle that I've used since 2001, and I figure anything that's ever going to leach out has already done so, so I keep it and use it.  If you want to be cautious, reheat your food in glass or ceramic containers, but let's keep everything in perspective.  

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