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Plastic dishes in the microwave? Better not (now even science says so)

They can be worn on plastic dishes in the microwave? Or is it a habit that, like many others, increases the amount of microplastics we put into our bodies every day? Because we shouldn’t forget that it’s like swallowing a credit card every week, says a study: five grams a week.

By inhaling it for example or drinking it together with water, but also through the intake of ordinary foods and drinks. Some studies say these estimates are excessive and try to remodel the calculations downward. The same World Health Organization tried to determine the amount of nano and microplastics we are exposed to through food, but concluded that this is a highly variable figure depending on the case and in any case too difficult to calculate accurately for the entire global population.

It certainly has that microplastics are present in what we breathe, eat and drink, and they are not good for us or the environment. Confirmation that they are present more than we suspect comes from one a study coordinated by the State University of Milan, in collaboration with the University of Milan-Bicocca and conducted at EOS, a company that created «SPES» (Single Particle Extinction and Scattering), an innovative method that allows you to classify nano and micro particles in a very precise and complete way.

According to the collected data, Plastic food containers heated in a microwave oven can release microplasticswhich are added to this known weekly amount, uncertain but nevertheless injurious to health.

University of Milan study

The idea to test whether plastic food containers heated in a microwave oven release micro and nanoplastics – says the State University of Milan – started from EOS, which uses the «SPES» technology (an innovative method that allows you to classify nano and micro particles in a very precise and complete way) highlighting the systematic formation of nano- and microplastic spheres during the heating of pure water, a controlled experiment designed to simulate what happens when food is heated.

After much cross-checking of the experimental procedures, the researchers concluded that, in fact, heating pure water in food containers releases nano- and microspheres composed of the material from which the container itself is made: polypropylene, a biocompatible material that has the characteristic of melting between 90 and 110 degrees. Therefore, by bringing the water to a boil, a small portion of the polypropylene melts and then solidifies again in the water. The same process, on the other hand, that is used for the industrial production of nanospheres of polymeric materials used in many industrial sectors from cosmetics to the development of innovative materials.

However, there are some precautions that prevent this from happening and that are worth keeping in mind: «It is interesting to note that several manufacturers state that containers should not be heated above 90°C, or not to heat them too long in the microwave, or even not to use the appliance at maximum power. Therefore, following these indications, the effect does not occur,” explains Tiziano Sanvitodirector and co-founder of EOS.

In short, in conclusion, plastic in the microwave isn’t always good for you, and the variable depends primarily on the temperature reached when heating the food. Therefore, the advice is always to use special containers made specifically for heating in a microwave oven for your “drinks”, so as to eliminate the possibility of transmitting additional nano and microplastics, in addition to those already accidentally ingested in everyday life with food and absorbed by the body .

Source: VanityFair



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