Teflon Vs. Ceramic – Battle of the Titans

We strive to use the healthiest oils, eating fresh (or organic) vegetables and even making new healthy recipes.  What we don’t think about is the pots and pans we make these fabulous foods on. This too can contribute to ingesting chemical based toxins.

Most households have Teflon (aka PTFE) cookware and these are coated with perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) that non stick they are known for. PFOA are made of chemicals that are originally not intended to be ingested by our bodies. These chemicals can leach on to our foods when cooking over high temperatures or heat the pan without any foods. Teflon pans release lots of chemicals and carcinogens!

As the Teflon cookware can get chipped or flaked over time; it continues to release chemicals and increase the leaching as these get older. Some pots and pans are not even made with Teflon grade but similar using cheaper materials. EEK!  These harmful chemicals leach on to your wonderful healthy foods.

Ok, now that I’ve scared you! Let’s talk about some alternatives:

Ceramic

I’ve been slowly switching my old pots and pans to ceramic coated ones. Yes, they are more expensive but to me totally worth the few dollars. With good care, these can last. Ceramic coated cookware don’t leach any chemicals, don’t have any chemical coating or residue. Some have reported the ceramic alternatives don’t last as long, however – I personally don’t think so. Its about taking care of the cookware.

Stainless steel and/or Copper

These are the pots and pans most professional chefs uses. Stainless steel are great when browning your foods. These are not coated and don’t have any chemical residues. However some reporting and studies show a small amount of chromium, nickel and copper. These will may affect those who have sensitivity to these elements.

Cast Iron

This reminds me of my grandfather’s farm house! Cast iron pans only get better with each use. Cast iron cookware has been used for centuries and usually used by campers as well. However, I personally find after decades of use, they have this rusty taste?

I thought I would pass on some important findings about Teflon (PTFE) and its chemicals found in EWG (Environmental Working Group) published report:

  • PFCs (used to make Teflon) impair immune system. liver, thyroid.
  • PFCs causes higher cholesterol rates in children
  • Once in the body it doesn’t breakdown, it just accumulates
  • Teflon linked to infertility to women
  • Mothers with higher levels of PFOA (the non-stick chemical) have babies less likely to reach developmental markers

Which cookware do you use?

<start rant>
While researching more details for this post, what I kept seeing over and over is that there is no regulations or restrictions on these chemicals that harm us, our children and even pets (when applicable) by regulatory organizations/entities. Why? It makes me mad how harmful this is and it is in most homes. We need to be informed! Only we can be true advocates to our health!
</end rant>

 

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