Does Teflon release toxic substances?

Teflon is the most common coating for non-stick pans. It allows you to cook food without the risk of biting it, but how safe is it for health? Can we cook with non-stick Teflon pans without fear? Let's try to deepen this very delicate topic, remembering that there are still alternatives to Teflon.

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Il Teflon is the most common coating for non-stick pans. It allows you to cook food without the risk of biting it, but how safe is it for health? We can to cook with non-stick Teflon-coated pans without fear?

Let's try to deepen this very delicate topic, remembering that al however there are alternatives.


What is Teflon?

Teflon is the commercial name of a synthetic polymer, known as Polytetrafluoroethylene and with the abbreviation PTFE. It is a plastic material resistant to high temperatures, even above 200 ° C. PTFE is hydrophobic and has one of the lowest coefficients of friction compared to solid materials. In this way the non-sticking of the Teflon-coated pans is guaranteed.

Toxic substances

According l 'Environmental working group, the thermal degradation of PTFE leads to the release of toxic substances, including corrosive and lethal gases, as well as PFIB, a highly toxic chemical agent that can persist very long in the environment. Also in the opinion of the Environmental Working Group, Teflon would come into contact with our body, remaining inside it for a long time, and causing liver and thyroid damagealso reducing our ability to fight infections. The problem of Teflon residues in food, and from it in our body, it would mainly concern non-stick pans, even more so if damaged and scratched.

Dangers for humans

Teflon, in addition to being harmful to animals - lethal toxicity has been confirmed for birds - would represent a dangerous substance for humans. In rare cases it would be able to provoke one flu-like syndrome linked to exposure to toxic substances emanating from this material. The dangers would also affect women during thenursing: Teflon residues were identified in breast milk in 45 subjects, in the course of one study conducted by researchers from the University of Manchester.

Dupont, inventor and first manufacturer of Teflon coated products, he would have been aware of its adverse health effects for over 50 years. C.iò was evident in the moment in which the workers production workers began to get sick during work. The risks would be linked to the substances and fumes released by Teflon during cooking.

Teflon soon outlawed?

THEEnvironmental Protection Agency (Epa) - American environmental protection agency - has ascertained that one of the substances used in the production of Teflon - theperfluoroctanic acid (PFOA) - it remains in the blood for 4 years. Therefore, by 2015 the producers will have to stop producing them. In this regard, the EPA turned to Dupont, 3M and other large companies. Above all, they fear each other liver damage andreproductive system, as well as for the pregnancy and for the future born, since the residues of this material have been identified in the umbilical cords and in the blood of women expecting a child. Industrial spills of PFOA can cause the toxic substance to accumulate in groundwater, with contamination of drinking water. The PFOA is believed to be one substance probably Cancer for humans.

Non-stick pans: are they dangerous?

The US decision of to ban Teflon and PFOA should make us think. Is it dangerous to use non-stick pans, especially if they are damaged? Altroconsumo in 2011 had conducted tests on artfully ruined pans without detecting the release of toxic substances, but simply the loss of non-stick properties.

However, if scientific studies have identified dangerous substances related toexposure to Teflon in the blood and in the human body, it is difficult to believe that non-stick Teflon-coated pans are among the causes to be ruled out. If in doubt, don't take any chances, especially with particularly worn out pans.

Alternative al Teflon

He had already told you about the possibilities alternatives to Teflon. When it comes to pans and pots, one of the safest choices would be stainless steel. L'stainless steel it is considered one of the most inert materials and would be able to release only small quantities of chromium and nickel. However, this could cause problems for those who suffer from allergies or intolerances, so a valid choice in this case may concern the pots in pyrex glass. Even the pans in cast iron enameled, not coated with toxic paints, and the ecological pans guaranteed as Teflon-free can represent a viable solution. Find out Thu all alternatives to Teflon.

Read also:

Carcinogenic Teflon? 10 alternatives to common non-stick pots and pans

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