Does microwaving food remove it’s nutritional value?

Posted on January 21, 2014 by

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I always think twice about using the microwave for anything besides popcorn in a paper bag or my morning coffee reheated.

If I have ldinner eftovers that I need reheated, I wonder if my oven is  better or should I just zap it for the convenience. I really don’t think about nutrients. My head is always around calories. Apparently, there is a big debate about whether microwaving food removes it’s nutritional value.

The CNN article I read informed me that:

But if you’re concerned about getting the most nutrition out of your eats, microwaving is a safe bet. In fact, it’s near the top of the list for nutritionally sound food-preparation methods. If you use your microwave with a small amount of water to essentially steam food from the inside, you’ll retain more vitamins and minerals than with almost any other cooking method.

“Whenever you cook food, you’ll have some loss of nutrients,” says registered dietician and certified food scientist Catherine Adams Hutt. “The best cooking method for retaining nutrients is one that cooks quickly, exposes food to heat for the smallest amount of time and uses only a minimal amount of liquid.”

Steaming over a stovetop is just as good, though. In some cases, it may even be better: One small study found that steamed broccoli retained more of its cancer-fighting sulforaphane than microwaved broccoli.

But in most cases, using your microwave to cook food, if it’s covered tightly in a microwave-safe container with a minimal amount of liquid, is a nutritional win.

In fact, it can even enhance the nutrition of some foods. It makes the carotenoids in tomatoes and carrots more available to our bodies, for example. It makes the biotin in eggs digestible. And heat kills bacteria in food that can make us sick.

It’s just a pain to clean the microwave if the covering falls off and the splatter is everywhere.

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 © 2014 US Food Safety Corporation. No copyright claim is made for portions of this blog and linked items that are works of the United States Government, state governments or third parties

 

Guess what? Microwave cooking does that.

Posted in: Family safety