By Mike Barrett
America’s most convenient appliance – microwave ovens seem to be an absolute necessity in today’s fast-paced world. They are currently present in at least 90% of homes in America thanks to their ability to cook and reheat foods or beverages in a simple, rapid way.The majority of people use this kitchen appliance without question and often think they are a reasonable alternative to conventional ovens for reheating or cooking. However you may want to think twice before using your microwave, as it could be one of the worst things YOU do to your food.
The way in which microwaves work and affect health
In short, microwave ovens are kitchen appliances which are used to cook or reheat food by emitting microwaves. Microwaves are a form of electromagnetic radiation and are on the low energy end of the energy spectrum, second to radio waves. The waves are generated by something called a magnetron – something found within every microwave oven.
Magnetrons produce an electromagnetic field with a microwave frequency of approximately 2,450 megaHertz (MGz), which is the equivalent to 2.4 gigaHertz (GHz). Microwaves produced within the microwave oven cause dialectric heating – they bounce around the inside of the oven and are absorbed by whatever is placed in the oven.
Don’t believe it? View the scientific research linking microwaves to cancer, diabetes, and nutritional deficiency.
In order for something to heat in a microwave oven, water must be present within the substance. If water is not present, heating will not occur and it would remain cool. The reason for this is that water molecules within the food vibrate at an incredible speed, creating molecular friction which is responsible for the heating of the food. The structure of the water molecules are torn apart and vigorously deformed. This is much different than any other method of cooking, as other methods such as convection ovens heat up food by transferring heat convectionally from the outside inward.
Hans Hertel, a Swiss scientist, states:
“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… 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.”
You might wonder why food is often unevenly heated when taken out of the microwave. The uneven heating occurs because microwaves work with whatever water molecules are present, and since not all areas of food contain the same amount of water, heating becomes uneven.
While microwave cooking does begin within the molecules where water is present, they don’t actually cook from “the inside out” like many people believe. They actually start with the outer layers while the inner layers are mostly heated and cooked simply by transference of heat from the outer layers. This is oftentimes why you’ll find that the outside of the food is extremely hot while the inside seems to have been absent during the re-heating or cooking.
The Radiation Effects of Microwaves and Other Forms of Non-Ionizing Radiation
Microwaves are in fact radiation. They are classified as non-ionizing radiation – radiation which can change the position of atoms but is not strong enough to alter their structure, composition, or properties. Even though non-ionizing radiation is not strong enough to alter the structure of atoms, it is still able to cause physical alterations. A clear example of how non-ionizing radiation can harm you is the damage caused to your skin and eyes caused by the sun. When you use microwave cooking, you are exposing yourself to microwave radiation.
Other forms of ionizing radiation are visible light, ultraviolet and infrared waves, and waves emitted from televisions, cell phones, and electric blankets.
Today we live in a technologically advanced world. We could label the time we live in as the “technology age” as well as the “radiation age”. We are currently bombarded with radiation from almost everything around us: radio towers, televisions, cell phones, microwave ovens, computers, satellites, broadcast antennas, and so much more. Unfortunately, radiation doesn’t go away over time, in fact, it just accumulates.
Although we’ve conducted study after study concluding that no amount of radiation is safe, we don’t really know what all of this means in the long term. But here is what we do know:
- When any radiation waves resonate with a body part, the biological effect is intensified. For example, microwave frequencies are very similar to the frequencies of your brain. The effects microwaves have on your brain are greater than those same waves on any other part of the body.
- Although studies are done to view the effects of radiation, most of these studies are done for short exposure periods at higher intensities. There is an immense shortage of studies using long exposure periods with low-level radiation. More research simply needs to be done.
- Radiation accumulates over time and never goes away.
- Due to the amount of radiation everyone is exposed to every day, it is difficult to conduct studies using control groups. Radiation can’t really be controlled anymore due to the unavoidable invasion.
We simply don’t know the long-term effects of microwave radiation, so why risk it by watching your food cook in your microwave day after day and night after night.
Who shouldn’t use microwave ovens and why?
No one should be using microwave ovens. This is especially true for babies, children, if you are pregnant, already suffer from illness & disease, or are already bombarded with more radiation than the average person.
You may suffer from “Microwave Sickness”
Tissues directly exposed to microwaves are subject to the same deformities molecules go through, and this can in turn cause you to experience “microwave sickness”. Remember, it isn’t just microwave ovens which emit this kind of radiation. Cell phone towers also emit this type of radiation.
People may experience any or all of the following after being exposed to high levels of microwave radiation.
- Impaired cognition
- Vision problems
- Depression and irritability
- Weakened immune system
- Insomnia and/or sleep disturbances
- Frequent urination and extreme thirst
Robert O. Becker, author of The Body Electric, stated the following on page 314 in his book:
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].
In another book entitled Health Effects of Microwave Radiation, author Dr. Lita Lee also expressed his concern over the use of microwaves. Dr. Lee observed that the symptoms listed above could be caused by certain observations shown below.
- Lymphatic disorders were observed, leading to decreased ability to prevent certain types of cancers
- An elevated 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 gradual breakdown of the systems of elimination were observed
Life Energy is Depleted
Foods which haven’t been processed or cooked and are naturally occurring contain life energy which is transmitted from the sun. Biophotons are the smallest physical unit of light which are stored in all life forms. They contain bio-information and are partially responsible the feelings you get which signify well-being and vitality. Foods like naturally grown vegetables and especially sun-ripened fruits are the main source for these biophotons to humans.
Microwaving food, in effect, potentially destroys and depletes the life energy, rendering the food completely dead and lifeless. In addition, the food’s nutritional value is lost and it becomes nearly useless in terms of providing any real health benefit.
Fact: Russians Banned the Microwave Oven After Extensive Studies
Microwaves were first invented by the Nazis in order to provide a method of cooking for their troops during World War II. Seeing as though these microwave ovens have been experimental and new, the US War Department was assigned to research these new devices shortly after the war.
Turns out, the U.S. didn’t really perform the extensive research necessary for the new invention. Instead, the Russians decided to tackle the issue with extreme force.
Intrigued by this new device, the Russians conducted in-depth research to discover the biological effects they might possess. The results were staggering enough to lead to a ban of the new device in the Soviet Union. The ban, however, was later lifted during Perestroika, the political movement responsible for the restructuring of the Soviet Union.
The findings include:
- Carcinogenic substances were formed from the microwaving of nearly all foods tested
- Microwaving milk and grains resulted in carcinogenic substances being formed through the conversion of amino acids
- Microwaving prepared meats caused cancer-causing agents such as d-Nitrosodienthanolamines to form
- Microwaving fruits as a method of thawing resulted in the conversion of glucoside and galactoside 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
- Structural degradation leading to decreased food value was found to be 60 to 90 percent overall for all foods tested, with significant decreases in bioavailability of B complex vitamins, vitamins C and E, essential minerals, and lipotropics
Twenty years of the Russian research led to the international warning about the damaging biological and environmental effects microwaves possess. The warning also included other similar frequency electronic devices such as cell phones.
Say Goodbye to Your Foods Nutritional Value
Although there hasn’t been as many studies on microwaves as say, the importance of various vitamins and minerals, all of the studies generally agree on one thing: nutritional value is significantly reduced if you microwave food. You’d think that studying microwaves would be at the top of the list, given their place in our society, but evidently their role is not significant enough for more thorough testing.
Note that most of these studies have been done prior to 2000. This may be due to the shift of focus from microwaves to a more prevalent threat to humanity: the intense electromagnetic chaos from electromagnetic devices such as cell phones, computers, and advanced technology. Here are some studies illustrating the detrimental effects of microwaves and microwave cooking.
- This study found that broccoli when microwaved with a little bit of water loses up to 97% of its beneficial antioxidants. Steamed broccoli only lost 11% or less. Some amounts of phenolic compounds and glucosinolates were also lost. The study was published in the November 2003 issue of The Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture.
- Vitamin C in asparagus spears was lost during a 1999 Scandinavian study.
- One study found 60 seconds of microwaving garlic depleted the food of it’s allinase, garlic’s primary cancer-fighting ingredient.
- Just 6 minutes of microwave heating turned 30-40 percent of the B12 in milk into a dead form, which was found in a Japanese study by Watanabe.
- An Australian study recently conducted showed that microwaves cause a higher degree of “protein unfolding” than conventional heating.
- A 1992 study found that breast milk lost lysozyme activity, antibodies, and became a more suitable environment for the potential growth of pathogenic bacteria after being microwaved.
Microwaving Food Leads to a Negative Impact on Human Physiology & the Heart
Hans Hertel, a Swiss food scientist, initiated the first tests on microwaved food and microwave cooking to determine how microwaves affect human physiology and the blood. After studying these effects, Hertel concluded that microwaving food leads to food degeneration. These degenerative changes in nutrients caused changes in blood which could cause health problems.
Health issues which could be caused are:
- Elevated cholesterol levels
- A plummet in leukocytes (white blood cells), which could suggest poisoning
- Decreased red blood cell levels
- Production of radiolytic compounds
- Decreased hemoglobin levels, which might indiciate anemia
Another study found that microwave frequency radiation affects the heart at non-thermal levels – levels which are well below federal safety guidelines. To examine these effects, the study used a 2.4GHz radiation frequency, which is the same frequency emitted by microwave ovens as well as wifi routers.
Editor’s note: The statements in this article are not contrived opinions of the author, but based on a number of different sources that are embedded within the text of this article as well as at the footer of the piece. The author is reporting only on the findings of these sources, studies, and research.