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Side Effects From Eating Microwave Meals

We all agree, hands down, there is no other bliss than enjoying a hot meal in the coziness of one’s home. Add what adds a cherry on the top? Getting to enjoy a hot meal without laboring for hours in the kitchen, toss one of those delicious- ‘heat and ready to eat meals’ into the microwave, and enjoy the delicacies saving time, effort, and money!

But have you questioned what the powerful radiations that can cook your food in minutes do to your body? Or the food that gets cooked in minutes? A reality check may open your eyes, urging you to decrease the dependency on these microwaved meals daily.

How Does The Microwave Work?

A microwave uses highly powerful radiations to transmit heat and hence, warm or cook the food. The radiations belong to the microwave part of the electromagnetic radiation, as the name indicates. These radiations have a long wavelength (lesser to only radio waves). According to EMR, the longer the wavelength, the lesser is the energy. 

Even though microwaves may bear less energy per photon than the visible lights, their power amplifies when used in the concentrated form in a confined space (like a microwave). Moreover, the microwave’s penetration power is much more prominent on human skin, making us as vulnerable as the food cooked inside the microwave.

Though microwaves are all safe to use with few side effects on humans regarding radiation (thanks to the layers of metal that make them safe to use in households), there are other areas of concern.

Contamination Leading To Foodborne Illness

While reheating the leftovers, there are high chances of contaminating your food. Be it during the transfer from one utensil to the other ‘microwave safe’ dishes using spoons or other means. However careful we might be, it is hard to ignore the possibility of contamination.

Although freezing food and reheating them should effectively kill them, heating in a microwave does not succeed in doing so. Since the device heats the food from the sides, your food may remain cold at the center. This temperature difference gives a medium for the bacteria to remain intact. With bacteria in place, you are exposing yourself to the risk of food poisoning. 

Wherever possible, avoid using microwaves for reheating meals. Make sure you evenly stir the food to ensure heat can pass to them for no other alternatives.

Decreasing Nutritional Value

Studies conducted have effectively shown how microwaved food has a considerably low amount of active vitamins and minerals. Say, for example, vitamin B12, upon exposure to microwave radiation, converts to an inactive form. 

Similarly, some food products are not suggested to be microwaved, like breast milk and baby foods. Apart from diminishing the nutritional value, the radiations also kill off ‘the good bacteria’ that build immunities in the toddlers. Certain foods are at higher risk of losing nutritional value than others. 

Possible Carcinogenic

Assured that you will be heating food in ‘microwave safe’ dishes, there is no guarantee that the ready-to-eat food is in plastics that do not cause any harm. Studies have found that the plastics involved in the packaging of the food release toxins that may be carcinogenic to humans. Some studies also point to the conversion of minerals into cancerous free radicals on exposure to microwaves.

Some cancer risk becomes manifold is breast, prostate, stomach, intestinal and colon cancer.

Susceptible To Certain Diseases

The decreased nutritional content and possible carcinogen make the body susceptible to diseases by reducing overall health. High dependence on microwaved food can increase cholesterol levels, lower hemoglobin levels, i.e., essentially altering the blood build-up. 

Cholesterol, in turn, determines your blood pressure levels. And as they say, one thing leads to another; eventually, all the effects cascade to your heart. In more exact words, they affect the heart’s health.

The Reality

It has been long since these microwaves have become a staple in the American household. Over time, they have become an integral part that offers the convenience of eating warm food in a fast-paced life. Say for yourself, how many times do you toss your food in the microwave to heat it? How many times have we casually put the containers without bothering to check?

Although it may be hard to give away with the daily use of microwaves, it is better to reduce the practical usage considering the significant side effects that multiple studies have raised questions about.

If you still lack conviction regarding the harm that your life-saving cooking alternative is doing, then you better check out to have an in-depth conclusion based on researches conducted. 


Contradicting approaches towards the nutritional levels due to microwaving meals might lead to pondering where the truth lies. At this point, studies are insufficient to classify theories as right and wrong.


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