Thoughts on Teflon Pans. I threw mine out 6 years ago when my X-husband insisted on heating higher than medium, which causes a TOXIC chemical reaction and kills Canaries in the Kitchen. I know this may sound strange and that I am being an alarmist….but you simply need to know most non-stick pans are made using polytetrafluoroethylene (e.g. DuPont's Teflon) coating and there have been health concerns on the raise regarding use of PTFE as a cooking pan coating. When pans are overheated beyond approximately 349 °C (660 °F) the PTFE coating begins to dissociate, releasing byproducts which can cause polymer fume fever in humans and can be lethal to birds. For people, it can be a mild respiratory irritant that may affect asthmatics and those with respiratory sensitivities, yet I have read about people who work with Teflon and develop polymer fever and other related symptoms. Compounds in non-stick cookware may be associated with elevated cholesterol levels in children and teens – YIKES!
For [20 years I have been studying Alzheimer’s and reading of neurological disorders in children. Obviously I am not a doctor, scientist…rather just an observer with a fascination studies reflective a 500% increase over the last 20+ years. Teflon had started to appear around the 1950’s when DuPont put in Bread makers and other Kitchen appliances. Then in 1960’s the revolutionary pans hit the market, BUT many were questioning when pieces of the pan started scraping off into food, and Teflon is also used many products to add a slippery edge like windshield wipers, Pam Spray, rugs/sprays, some ties/clothing mainly because it is considered a protector repelling liquids, allowing spills to be wiped up without leaving a stain. It has also been used on all-weather clothing, to coat eyeglass lenses, as a fingernail protector and even in a line of haircare products.
Around 2006, we started hearing a public outrage to BPA, which is an endocrine disruptor (means it acts as a hormone disruptor). EPA was slow in responding and many companies took it upon themselves to react to public outrage and pulled BPA off their shelf products. EPA finally banned baby bottles etc. in 2012, and they continue to do research (or wait until privately paid studies cause public outrage and prove a toxin that is unworthy of our diet). European Commission bans and many countries ban and do not allow these products. I bring this up simply because this was another added toxin that I found frightening and only stumbled across it when my kids were young and fought with my X about the use of Teflon. While I completely understand the exposure to so many toxins is unavoidable, I also know what I want to limit (as much as I can), what my children take in. My X wouldn’t relent to my requests to keep the flame to medium and there were scrapes on some of the pans with the stuff coming off. You know what I did, threw them all out and he had no choice.
California Bans “Teflon Chemical in Food Packaging” (2005 and goes into effect 2015), further stating “The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency considers PFOA a likely human carcinogen known to induce testicular and mammary cancers in animals. Two studies conducted by professors at UCLA and Johns Hopkins and published in leading journals last year have linked PFOA exposure among the general population to low birth weight. Perfluorinated chemicals, including PFOA, are also associated with altered male reproductive hormones, and effects on the liver, thyroid gland, and immune system. I will remind you that Europe BANS 1,300+ ingredients from Creams, additives to medicines, foods chemicals etc. USA only bans 9. Lead and Parabens are NOT among those we ban (lipsticks, fillers).
And, unlike other pollutants, which break down in the environment eventually, PFOA and other PFCs don't, according to EPA. Every molecule that is produced today will be around forever, continually redistributing throughout the environment. As a result, it is in the bloodstream of virtually every person in the country - including children still in the womb.
Australia already had a recent voluntary ban on PFOS, but on PFOAs the Government has only issued a warning. They are now considering a ban http://www.abc.net.au/worldtoday/content/2006/s1556743.htm
Environmental Working Group “Canaries in the Kitchen: Teflon Toxicosis-Teflon KILLS birds” http://www.ewg.org/node/8299 (DuPont has NOT conducted enough or any long term effects on humans, and the research is plentiful to contradict their claims that it is safe).
Dr. Andrew Weil, M. of New Age Magazine: http://www.drweil.com/drw/u/QAA400470/Anxious-About-Anodized-Aluminum.html
Wikipedia “Non-Stick Pans” - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Non-stick_pan some basic facts.
BPA: An In-depth discussion on Key Rulings in 2012 (by Food Production Daily.com) http://www.foodproductiondaily.com/Packaging/BPA-An-in-depth-look-at-the-key-rulings-in-2012?nocount
Radical disclosure http://english.despertando.me/2012/08/26/time-for-change-20120826-deadly-teflon-chemical-decades-of-cover-ups/
- Cast iron can be a non-stick pan when properly seasoned. Seasoning requires little effort and afterward becomes virtually non-stick. To season, coat the skillet with cooking oil and bake at 350 degrees for approximately an hour. Pat dry with a towel and your cast iron pan is ready to be used. There is cast iron cookware on the market that comes pre-seasoned or coated with porcelain. Cooking with cast iron increases the amount of iron absorbed into food as it cooks. NOTE: Do not use soap…I know, sounds gross, but just have one scrubber arm brush (I use one with metal bristles and between sponge with green scrubbing and the brush, it gets everything off).
HARD ANODIZED ALUMINUM
- Hard anodized aluminum is another coating alternative to Teflon. Instead of being coated, the aluminum goes through a process called anodization. After the anodization process, aluminum pans are scratch resistant, non-stick and free of chemicals. Hard anodized aluminum also prevents aluminum from reacting to acidic foods, a common problem with uncoated aluminum.
- GreenPan is a non-stick substitute to Teflon. GreenPans are coated with Thermolon, a substance that contains no polytetrafluoroethylene (PFOA). PFOA is the main chemical in Teflon that critics worry is toxic and cancer-causing. GreenPan claims that its pans are environmentally conscious during the coating process as well. According to its website, GreenPan produces 60 percent less CO2 emissions.
Alzheimer’s Facts & Figure Stats: http://www.alz.org/alzheimers_disease_facts_and_figures.asp
- One in eight older Americans has Alzheimer's disease.
- Alzheimer's disease is the sixth-leading cause of death in the United
States and the only cause of death among the top 10 in the United States
that cannot be prevented, cured or even slowed.
Have you ever thought about any of this?
Will you now reconsider knowing some of these facts?