Q/ What are the ben­e­fits of green cook­ware?

Clean Eating - - LETTERS & ADVISORY BOARD - – JONATHAN ROY, COLUM­BUS, OH

A/

The pop­u­lar­ity of green cook­ware is grow­ing for both health and en­vi­ron­men­tal rea­sons. The orig­i­nal Te­flon coat­ing on non­stick pots and pans was made of chem­i­cals called poly­te­traflu­o­roethy­lene (PTFE) and per­flu­o­rooc­tanoic acid (PFOA). When tra­di­tional Te­flon cook­ware is heated on high, PTFE breaks down and con­verts to PFOA, a pos­si­ble car­cino­gen. PFOA has been linked to can­cer, thy­roid dis­ease, in­fer­til­ity and a weak­ened im­mune sys­tem. Although PFOA was vol­un­tar­ily phased out of cook­ware as of 2015, new non­stick pots and pans can still con­tain PTFE. (The PTFE cook­ware of the fu­ture has to be re­for­mu­lated us­ing poly­mers that won’t break down or con­tain any PFOA.) Un­til more re­search is done on the re­for­mu­la­tions, the safest choice is to opt for eco-friendly ma­te­ri­als like stain­less steel, glass and cast iron. If you need to use non­stick, opt for heat-sta­ble, ce­ramic non­stick cook­ware that’s free of both PFOA and PTFE, such as Cuisi­nart’s Green Gourmet Hard An­odized Cook­ware or the Orig­i­nal GreenPan. – ERIN MAC­DON­ALD AND TIFFANI BACHUS

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