When you think of cookware, you think about how you would prefer to get pans that are non-stick because of the fact that they are easy to clean. The material used in non-stick pans that have been used since the 40s is Teflon. For a long time, Teflon was the preferred material for cookware and the chemical name for it is polytetrafluoroethylene or PTFE. The reason PTFE or Teflon has been the preferred material for cookware is that it is a good water repellant which makes it easy to clean and prevents sticking and coating from happening while cooking. However, for several decades, health specialists warned people about the dangerous effects of Teflon.
Up until 2015, a chemical perfluorooctanoic acid or PFOA was used in non-stick Teflon pans and there were links found for various cancers, tumors, as well as infertility. When you cooked in a non-stick Teflon pan, you would end up taking in this chemical and it would bind to your body for a period of time. Therefore, you would end up with many health problems and illnesses as a result of it. Additionally, short-term illnesses such as fevers and headaches have also been linked to Teflon. Even though there is a reformulation of Teflon since 2015, it still has health risks. Therefore, the good news is that there are now safe alternatives to Teflon. Let’s go over four of the safe alternatives to Teflon cookware.
Ceramic is much better than Teflon because it is so much safer, and it is also better for the environment. Therefore, when you are looking at investing in ceramic cookware, you will want to not get the cheapest type, or else it will end up not lasting you for very long. Therefore, you will want to go for reputable brands. If you cook oil in ceramic pans, it will lessen its life, but not by much. And that is another reason you want to invest in reputable ceramic cookware.
Cast iron requires maintenance and it is a very heavy material but if you take care of it well, it will last you a long time! Cast iron pans are non-stick naturally and the great thing about these pans is that they will emit iron into your food. They do not emit toxic levels of iron, but enough of it to keep your red blood cells healthy and to help prevent anemia. Therefore, if you have a history of anemia, you will want to look into getting cast iron cookware.
The one big disadvantage of stainless steel is that they are not non-stick which means it requires you to take the time to clean the cookware well. However, they are safe and will not emit anything into your food as you cook it. Additionally, they will last you a very long time so you don’t need to replace the cookware often. If you don’t cook with too much oil, it will not take too long to clean either.
Glass cookware will is not meant for the stove but it cooks your food well in the microwave and oven. It will not emit anything into your food, but the issue is that it is also, like stainless steel, not non-stick and it can easily break too. If you do not add too much oil into it, you can clean it easily as well.
Therefore, those four cookware alternatives are a much safer option than Teflon. You also want to avoid aluminum cookware and unlined copper pans as they can cause some safety hazards as well which you do not want to risk! Stick to the recommended options for your cookware.