Kitchen cookware has it’s health benefits, it’s cooking benefits and it’s drawbacks. The drawbacks depend on who is using it for cooking. When you look at the different amounts of cookware, there are so many to choose from, these include:
- Stainless Steel
- Iron based E.g Cast iron
- Enamel Coated
The question is, do you know the health benefits of stainless steel cookware? Because you need too. If you look at the sales and your friends cookware, you can come to the conclusion that stainless steel is the most widely used material for cookware. It dominates the kitchen in every aspect. But why? Well stainless steel cookware has cooking benefits as well as health benefits, so even if people are not into their health, they still are likely to be using stainless steel for cooking.
Some benefits of using stainless steel for cooking include but are not limited to:
- Strength and durability
- Easy to clean
- It’s Non Stick
- Non porous
Is stainless steel cookware bad for your health?
Normally no, stainless steel cookware is not bad for your health. However this is dependant on a few factors. Different brands construct their stainless steel cookware in different ways. Some better than others. This is what can determine whether the cookware is safe for cooking food.
Stainless steel is made up of chromium and nickel. Chromium is not bad for your health as your body needs it in very small quantities. You normally get chromium from your food in small amounts so it’s not anything to worry about. However, nickel has no use in the human body, and if you ingest large amounts this can affect your health by giving you heavy metal poisoning. Nickel normally enters the body when using stainless steel cookware through a process called leaching, this happens when the quality of the stainless steel cookware is low.
So to avoid leaching make sure you buy your cookware from a reputable brand, not only will their cookware last a long time and have fantastic non stick properties, but it won’t leach harmful chemicals into your food.
The next thing you need to avoid it scratching. When you scratch the stainless steel cookware you scratch the material into your food. So make sure you don’t use any sharp utensils such as knives.
What is the safest cookware for your health?
In my opinion, cast iron is definitely the safest and healthiest cookware. As with all cookware, the materials can leech into your food, rendering it potentially unsafe. Different materials have different temperatures they are safe at too. As heat can chemically change the composition of some materials. That’s why cooking oil becomes harmful once it starts to smoke.
Iron is safe because our body requires iron as part of our diet, and thus if iron does leech into our food, as long as it’s not in large amounts, it is safe.
What are the advantages of stainless steel cookware?
There are many advantages of stainless steel cookware, some obvious, some not so obvious. It’s important you know the advantages so you can utilise it for your health and for your cooking. So what are the benefits of stainless steel?
No PTFE and PEOA
PTFE and PEOA are harmful chemicals that can cause kidney disease with prolonged use. Luckily stainless steel cookware does not contain any of these harmful chemicals. They are also both linked to Alzheimer’s disease.
It’s not corrosive
Corrosion is a big risk with cookware, after long uses it begins to break down and erode. Even stainless steel cookware erodes. However it erodes much much slower, and with proper care it’s insignificant in comparison to some materials that are nonstick. So for this reason, cookware stainless steel provides a safe cooking environment for food.
Non stick and easy to sanitize
Another health benefit of stainless steel cookware is it’s easy to clean, meaning less bacteria growth inside the material and leaving the pan healthy to cook food in.
Nonstick coating is a big benefit to stainless steel, there is no reason for brands to use artificially made materials which breakdown when you can use stainless steel. That’s why professional chefs tend to stick to the basics of cast iron or stainless steel, as not only are they more resistant, but quality stainless steel or cast iron is much healthier.
Lastly, stainless steel helps to retain the flavour when you cook food in the pan. The stainless steel prevents reactions taking place with acidic and alkaline foods, ensuring safety while providing great tasting food.
Is stainless steel better than nonstick?
Stainless steel is better than nonstick materials, most commonly called Teflon. Teflon use to be made from a formula which turned out to be devastating for health, it was linked to thyroid disease, lung damage and short term symptoms once inhaled. This was most commonly called the “Teflon Flu” However in 2013, they did change it to be a much safer formula. Keeping this in mind, there has not been enough studies to show that it’s completely safe, so if you are looking for the healthy option, it’s definitely stainless steel cookware or pots and pans.
Teflon became so big due to it’s relatively cheap price, however as people began to discover how dangerous it was, they shifted towards the stainless steel cookware, and that’s basically the history of why Teflon is so popular today. I do not recommend Teflon for nonstick cookware, if you were wanting a pan that lasts a long time and that’s healthy, I would recommend stainless steel cookware. It’s a healthy pan to cook food in.
If you are looking for the health benefits of stainless steel cookware, there are quite a few in comparison to other materials. Stainless steel cookware is expensive but it’s worth it because it’s non stick, it’s a great conductor of heat and it’s non toxic. This means that once you have bought a stainless steel pan, you don’t have to worry when cooking your food. The pan will do the cooking and the cleaning for you because of it’s fantastic non stick properties.
So don’t hesitate and pick yourself up some stainless steel cookware, you won’t regret it.