Why and when did humankind switch to metal cookware, and what have been the effects?
- Author Sachin Sharma
- Published October 15, 2020
- Word count 587
The human civilizations had been making cookware from clay since early history, even with the existence of skilled Metallurgy (the art and science of extracting and forming things from metals). And they never felt the need to try any other material because, along with the art and skill of making clay cookware was passed along the value to the health of the food, by cooking in them. But recent history changed many things.
With the advent of Industrialization came the excessive mining of metals during the 17, 18 and 19th century. With all that metal everywhere, people had to find a way to re-purpose it! Why not re-make it into cookware! A brilliant idea then, is only now showing its ugly head. After a few generations of eating food tainted with metal ions, and nutritionally lacking, we have become a race that is acquiring new illness and diagnoses by the hour, so to speak. A far cry from the groups of people just a few generations ago that were eating food cooked in clay and did not have the health problems we are suffering from:
Here are some of the popular metals used in making cookware and what they do to food:
Iron: The metal or ferric form of iron from cast iron cookware has no health value and cannot be assimilated like the ferrous form found in plants and meat. It remains toxic in the blood and combined with oxygen, forms free radicals. Studies show these free radicals may the cause of many kinds of cancer.
Aluminum: Chronic aluminum exposure has contributed directly to hepatic failure, renal failure, and dementia (Arieff et al., 1979). This soft metal reacts with foods and releases metal into blood which could be the root cause of Alzheimer’s disease. Other health problems caused by this toxic metal are colic, convulsions, esophagitis, gastroenteritis, kidney damage, liver dysfunction, loss of appetite, loss of balance, muscle pain, psychosis, shortness of breath, weakness, and fatigue (ATSDR 1990). Aluminum toxicity can even cause birth defects in newborns.
Stainless Steel: It is made up of a combination of various metals like iron, nickel, chromium, molybdenum, carbon etc. that are all toxic. For example, even a small concentration of nickel can cause kidney dysfunction, low blood pressure, muscle tremors, oral cancer, skin problems etc.
Titanium: Contrary to popular belief, titanium is a reactive soft metal. It contaminates food by reacting to nutrients present in the form of oxygen, hydrogen, halogens, acids, and bases. The resultant pseudo-nutrients accumulate in the blood, cells, tissues, and organs and make them dysfunctional over time.
Ceramics & other inferior quality clays: Ceramics and other clays like flame ware, stoneware, terracotta etc. have secondary or tertiary clay that has impurities. Furthermore, additives containing metal oxides and chemicals are used for ease of manufacturing and making the product attractive. This defeats the whole purpose of making clay cookware because the final product is sure to leach toxins and contaminate food.
Pure Clay Cookware – the only healthy alternative to metals & ceramics
This leaves us with the only material our ancestors were initially using – all-natural primary clay. Miriams Earthen Cookware (MEC) – a pioneering company in the USA is working day and night to correct probably one of the biggest mistakes in human history, by making pots and pans from pure clay. Their cookware pieces are individually handcrafted without using additives or glazes from scientifically tested raw material. MEC leaves no stone unturned in making certain their cooking pots are 100% non-toxic, pure, and healthy – exactly how they should be for cooking food.
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