Do you eat clean but cook dirty? By that I mean, do you use toxic cookware? Do you even know what healthy cookware should be made of?
Whenever I talk to someone who says they are really serious about changing the way they eat, learning about healthy cooking and eating clean, the first thing I do is encourage them to give their kitchen a complete overhaul….
Most people interpret a “kitchen shape up” as something like opening up the cupboards, tossing the junk and replacing it with healthy food. And without a doubt, getting the junk food out should absolutely be a top priority. But it is also tremendously important to shape up your cookware too…not just for health’s sake, but also for taste!
Healthy Cooking Starts with Healthy Cookware
Many people do not realize that the cookware they use may actually be leaching toxins into their bloodstream. This is especially concerning for people who are trying to eat well and think healthy cooking means using non-stick cookware. What they don’t know is that PFOA (Perfluorooctanoic acid), a carcinogenic man-made chemical, is widely used in the production of many non-stick cookware surfaces. When heated to a high degree or scratched during normal cooking, non-stick cookware can release toxins into the food. The use of non-stick cookware could be a reason PFOA can be found in the bloodstreams of 95% of American men, women and children.
Other non-safe, non-stick cookware is made using PFTE (polytetrafluoroethylene), which deteriorates when cookware is heated to high levels and emits dangerous gases that have been linked to flu-like symptoms in humans. In fact, the Environmental Working Group has petitioned for a rule with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission to require all cookware and heated appliances bearing any non-stick coatings to carry a label warning of human health hazards. I personally won’t use any non-stick cookware in my house.
Aluminum, which is used in over half of all cookware, is another concern as some studies have shown that when heated in contact with an acid (like tomato sauce), potentially dangerous aluminum salts can leech into the food.
Even though it is considered “green” by some, there is also concern about stainless steel cookware. Stainless steel is actually a mixture of several different metals, including nickel, chromium and molybdenum, all of which can trickle into foods. Even though our body requires metals, we are really supposed to get them from our food, not necessarily our cookware. There is concern that metal that comes from cookware has no bioavailability which means that it has no value at the cellular level in the human body and can potentially be harmful.
Finding a “Green” Pot To Cook In…
Let’s face it: “healthy living” and “green product lines” have become BIG business. Just as there are plenty of pseudo health food products on the market, the same goes for wanna-be truly healthy skincare products, hair cleansers , soaps, detergents…and cookware. There are many companies today who are jumping on the healthy band wagon and taking advantage of the green movement while not necessarily being an intrinsically green company.
There really should be universal standards that have to be met before you can call your product green. But sadly, there aren’t.
Slapping a non-stick ceramic coating on aluminum cookware does not make the product green because the manufacturing process involved in making metal cookware is extremely toxic to the environment and to the factory workers.
In my quest for healthy cooking, over the years I have tried all sorts of “green” healthy cookware, including stainless steel, cast iron and even copper. Although copper cookware has always been considered the Cadillac of cookware due to the fact copper is an excellent conductor of heat, if the copper comes in direct contact with the cooking surface it can leach out in excessive amounts.
Every cookware option I have researched over the years has presented some sort of problem. The one I have found to be the “greenest” as well as the most versatile is Xtrema Cookware.
Extremely Green, Xtrema Healthy Cookware Makes Foods Taste Better
Xtrema Cookware is 100% ceramic, non-scratch, non-reactive and non-toxic.
Considered to be the greenest, healthiest, most sustainable and most versatile cookware on the planet, Xtrema skillets, saucepans, woks, teaware and bakeware are manufactured with natural minerals from the earth’s crust, thus providing a much safer cooking alternative to traditional metal and non-stick coated cookware.
Foods cooked with Xtrema even taste better! I know this claim sounds like it must be a bit of a stretch, but I am being serious. Foods cooked in Xtrema taste better because they are free from the heavy metals and toxins found in other cookware that can leach into foods and distort the taste.
Xtrema Cookware is Super Versatile Too!
Xtrema’s versatility is also pretty incredible. Xtrema cookware can go just about everywhere, thus reducing the need for multiple cooking/ storage products, which of course can save energy, time and money. Very green indeed (smile). Here’s where Xtrema cookware can go:
- On the stovetop
- In the oven
- In the broiler
- In the microwave oven (Note: whether you do or do not use a microwave, be sure to read this article—I promise you will be surprised at what you learn!)
- Table top
And I can’t help but mention how beautiful Xtrema looks as well as how easy it is to clean. No tedious scrubbing required—Xtrema cleans like a dream.
I fell in love with the Xtrema Cookware line so much that I actually reached out to the company, Ceramcor, that manufacturers it to learn more. I discovered the Xtrema manufacturing process is in fact very involved and requires highly skilled artisans twenty-two days of work to finish each and every piece. And believe me, the craftsmanship does not go unnoticed. When you look at and cook with Xtrema you know you are using cookware that is very special and very well crafted.
The only downside I have discovered with my Xtrema cookware is that if you are not careful then it WILL break. This happened to me with my Xtrema saucepan lid and I was very disappointed. You just can’t throw Xtrema cookware around like you might do with other cookware. But if you are careful and aware of the fact that it can break then you shouldn’t have any issues. For the record, I have not broken any more of my Xtrema cookware.
You can purchase Xtrema cookware by clicking HERE. When you purchase the cookware you can type in coupon code “ccx10” at checkout to receive an exclusive 10% off Clean Cuisine discount on any non-sale priced products.
My 2nd and 3rd Healthy Cookware Options
While Le Creuset is absolutely beautiful, it is certainly not inexpensive! And it too can break. The downside to stainless steel is that, as mentioned above, it does have leaching potential. The main metal leached from stainless steel is nickel, which is definitely not optimal. You can reduce the leaching potential of stainless steel however by not using it to cook acidic foods (such as tomato sauce).
Clean Eating Healthy Cookware Conclusion…
In conclusion, if you really are truly serious about clean eating and improving the taste of your food, my suggestion is to go to your kitchen and toss out your toxic non-stick skillets and other toxic cookware right this minute. I realize that buying a whole new cookware set can be pricey, but keep in mind, you don’t need to get a full set all in one day. I would start with just a good skillet and saucepan and go from there. The pots you cook in day after day are an investment, so choose wisely and buy slowly.