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Are Microwaves Bad?

Claim- Microwaves "corrupts" DNA, and changes food and water so that the body can no longer recognize it. Plants watered with microwaved water wither and die, and food loses all its nutrients.

Misleading much?
Verdict-  False, Misleading. Anytime you heat food, some nutrients are destroyed in the process, whether you use a conventional oven, microwave, or simply club your food and heat it over a camp fire. How much you heat it, how long you heat it, and how much water you use while heating it all play a role in how many nutrients are lost in the process. The other side to this is that heating your meals can also make it easier for our bodies to to break down and digest some foods, such as meat and vegetables. Making food easier to break down in turn means less energy and time is expended from our digestive systems to convert it, which in turn gives us more energy and time to pursue other interests, like forwarding useless Facebook posts.  If done properly, most foods will retain more nutrients through microwaving over conventional methods mainly due to shorter cooking times, and as most microwave preparations require less water than conventional cooking, less nutrients are drained out as well.

Mankind has been heating meals for thousands or years, while microwaves have only recently been introduced in the last few decades. "Nuking" that pizza pop is a quick and easy way to get a hot meal and burn the roof of your mouth, but is it worse for you than firing up the oven? From an environmental standpoint a microwave can use much less electricity than a conventional oven, and is definitely quicker. Microwaving meat can also eliminate up to 90% of carcinogens over conventional heating, such as HCAs, which have been linked to several types of cancers.

Some people are concerned about the radiation that microwaves use. Microwaves do use a type of radiation, but that does not mean it is bad. Sunlight is also radiation, and so is heat, both of which we need to survive. Of the two main types of radiation, ionizing and non-ionizing, only ionizing damages DNA. Microwaves use non-ionizing radiation, meaning it does not have the power to destroy DNA, contrary to many claims otherwise. The only way for it to harm you is direct contact with the radiation waves, which means either you have a faulty microwave with possibly no front door, or you're small enough to have somehow managed to stuff yourself into one and turn it on.

That doesn't mean your microwave is completely safe either. There is still all the dangers of super-heating or overheating your food, and of your microwave leaking radiation through faulty door seals while it is in operation, possibly burning you. However it's fairly simple to test your microwave to see if there may be an issue with leakage without any special equipment. Also, some things are not recommended to be microwaved, such as breast milk, because you are killing all the good bacteria and the antibodies that are beneficial to a developing child. Other things that should not be nuked...
Plastic storage containers, such as margarine tubs, take-out containers, or any other kinds of containers designed for single use. (They can warp, and may release harmful chemicals into your food.) Plastic wraps, wax paper, and newspapers are potentially unsafe. And it's definitely not the greatest idea to try nuking your  Grapes, Eggs in their shell, Cds, Metals, or Your Cell Phones, either.
In short, microwaves may not always be the healthiest of food preparation options, but it isn't nearly as bad as some people seem to think. There seems to be some kind of stigma about things that are associated with radiation, but the reality is that there are many different sources of radiation, and not all of them are bad. As long as you use your appliances responsibly, there isn't too much to worry about.

Mythbusters Superheating Of Water


Sources
Microwave Ovens
How Microwaves Work
Snopes Microwaved Water Debunked 
Chemicals In Meat Cooked At High Temperatures

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