ME and Ophelia

Wednesday, September 22, 2004

What to do for the best, does anybody know?

Yesterday, a friend emailed me a report, copied here below, that says microwaving your food is not safe. She didn't want to worry me, wasn't sure if she should pass it on, but thought I'd find it interesting.

Well, I did find it interesting because I've never felt comfortable using a microwave. As there is no treatment or medicine for my illness, I believe good food is my only hope. Maybe it will help heal something at cellular level. I've heard that certain fish oils can help heal the brains of Alzheimer sufferers. I go to a lot of trouble and effort to eat only fresh food and organic where possible, nothing processed or in tins except for chick peas (for hummus) kidney beans (for chili con carne), tuna, sardines and crabmeat.

My mother always cooked fresh meals daily and I've kept the tradition. Before I became ill five years ago, I'd never used a freezer and am not keen on having to freeze food.

These days though, because I am unable to go grocery shopping, I manage by phoning fortnightly orders to my local green grocer and wholefood store and butcher who happily pack up and deliver right to my kitchen counter.

It has taken me a few years to get used to the idea of freezing fresh meat, defrosting and cooking it, and freezing the cooked portions. And it took even longer to warm to the idea of using a microwave to heat the frozen portions. Who knows how many nutrients get lost in the process?

Some food experts say frozen fish is better than fresh because it's frozen within hours of being caught whereas fresh fish spends time in boxes being traded, carted around, transported, handled and displayed. Many frozen vegetables such as loose corn and petit pois tend to be as nutritious as fresh because they are frozen upon being picked.

This summer, it has been handy to be able to store ice cream tubs and lollies - along with oven ready chips (no need for cooking in oil) - as standbys incase my young niece and nephew pay a surprise visit on a day when I am unable to serve something special.

Fresh parsley and coriander, washed and stored in plastic bags or boxes and frozen, seem easier to chop while frozen. Grated cheese (in bulk using the food processor) stored into small freezer boxes, sliced bread in bags and home made soups in 2 portion containers freeze well. Cooked rice, frozen in portions, also turns out well (especially if slightly undercooked) when heated in a microwave. Most foods can be frozen which saves energy shopping, preparation and washing up.

Because of the freezing and microwaving of some foods and probable loss of nutrients, I still try and eat five vegetables and four fruits each day. Sounds a lot but there is such a variety that it's quite easy to get used to. Even a handful of cress, watercress, chopped green and red peppers, spring onions, lettuce, cucumber, beetroot, coriander, parsley and onion, is easy to serve on the side of most meals. Some fruits are easy too: sliced banana or berries (they freeze well) mixed into yoghurt with fresh nuts and honey, seedless grapes and olives sprinkled into salads, pears and apples are simple to prepare and eat with rye biscuits and cheese, hummus or whatever. Recently, I made a simple pate by mashing tinned sardines (best are from Portugal) into a chunk of soft goats cheese with a squeeze of lemon and some crushed garlic.

It's taken me the past few years to organise and streamline the timely delivery of ingredients along with someone to cook bulk dishes like fish and meat pies, lasagne, soups etc., and store into freezer boxes for me to reheat in the microwave, and add to rice or pasta and salad. If I take heed of this report, I'd need to reheat frozen food in the oven and buy foil or metal boxes for days when I cannot deal with pots and pans. Or should I just ignore this report? I've not googled for more information as I imagine there'd be quite a lot to plough through on the subject of microwaves. What to do for the best, does anybody know?

by Larry Cook

If you have ever wondered whether or not microwaved food is safe, here's an experiment you can do at home. Plant seeds in two pots. Water one pot with water that has been microwaved, the other with regular tap. The seeds that received microwaved water won't sprout. If microwaved water can stop plants from growing, think of what microwaved food can do to your health!

In 1989, Swiss biologist and food scientist Dr. Hans Hertel studied the effects of microwaved food. Eight people participated in the study. For eight weeks, they lived in a controlled environment and intermittently ate raw foods, conventionally cooked foods and microwaved foods. Blood samples were tested after each meal. They discovered that eating microwaved food over time, causes significant changes in blood chemistry: a decrease in hemoglobin and cholesterol values, in the HDL (good cholesterol) versus LDL (bad cholesterol) ratio and in white blood cells, weakening the immune system, and an increase in leukocyte levels, which tends to indicate poisoning and cell damage.

Overall, the study suggested that eating microwaved foods can cause degenerative diseases and/or cancer. "The measurable effects on man through the ingestion of microwaved food, unlike untreated food, are blood alterations, that can also be found at the beginning of a pathological condition, also indicative of a beginning cancerous process," wrote Dr. Bernard Blanc, who assisted in the study.

Microwave ovens "cook" food by forcing the atoms, molecules and cells within the food to reverse polarity billions of times per second, causing friction-the more the friction, the more the heat. This oscillation tears and deforms the molecular structure of food. New compounds are formed, called radiolytic compounds, which are not found in nature.

Interestingly, microwaves are actually used in gene-altering technology to deliberately break cells and neutralize their "life-force" so they can be manipulated. Microwaves destroy the life-force that gives food its vitality and nourishment. When this life-force dissipates, microorganisms start breaking food down and it begins to rot.

In early 1991, a lawsuit was filed against an Oklahoma hospital because a patient died form receiving a microwaved blood transfusion. Hospitals routinely heat blood for transfusion, but not in a microwave.

The effects of microwaving breast milk have also been researched.

John Kerner, M.D. and Richard Quin, M.D. from Stanford University said that "Microwaving human milk, even at a low setting, can destroy some of its important disease-fighting capabilities." After more research, Kerner wrote in the April 1992 issue of Pediatrics that "Microwaving itself may in fact cause some injury to the milk above and beyond the heating."

And a radio announcement at the University of Minnesota said that "Microwaves are not recommended for heating a baby's bottle. Heating the bottle in a microwave can cause slight changes in the milk. In infant formulas there may be a loss of some vitamins. In expressed milk, some protective properties may be destroyed."

Another study in Vienna warned that microwaving breast milk "can lead to structural, functional and immunological changes," and that microwaves transform the amino acid L-proline into D-proline, a proven toxin to the nervous system, liver and kidneys.

In Russia, microwave ovens were banned in 1976 because of their negative health consequences and many studies were conducted on their use. Here are some of their findings on microwaving food: 

- Microwaved foods lose 60 ~ 90% of the vital-energy field and microwaving accelerates the structural disintegration of foods.

- Microwaving creates cancer-causing agents within milk and cereals.

- Microwaving alters elemental food-substances, causing digestive disorders.

- Microwaving alters food chemistry which can lead to malfunctions in the lymphatic system and degeneration of the body's ability to protect itself against cancerous growths. 

- Microwaved foods lead to a higher percentage of cancerous cells in the bloodstream. 

- Microwaving altered the breakdown of elemental substances when raw, cooked, or frozen vegetables were exposed for even a very short time and free radicals were formed.

- Microwaved foods caused stomach and intestinal cancerous growths, a general degeneration of peripheral cellular tissues, and a gradual breakdown of the digestive and excretive systems in a statistically high percentage of people.

- Microwaved foods lowered the body's ability of the body to utilize B-complex vitamins, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, essential minerals and lipotropics.

The microwave field next to a microwave oven caused a slew of health problems as well.

Aside form these studies, many people find that microwaving their food doesn't help them feel good.

Stephanie Relfe, Kinesiologist, found herself feeling "grey and rather low" one day and discovered that she had inadvertently eaten microwaved food at a restaurant. In her practice, she found that all of her patients gave body signals of having allergic reactions to microwaved foods.

Another Kinesiologist, David Bridgeman, said, "Of all the people I test for allergies, 99.9% so far show severe sensitivity to any microwaved food."

In conclusion then, the safest way to heat your food is to use your stove top and throw away your microwave! [end of report]

# posted by Ingrid J. Jones @ 9/22/2004
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