Tin foil is essential for any good barbecue or picnic.
And while it’s a good tool for baking, roasting, and storing food, it has some serious health risks that are worth mentioning.
Aluminum Foil Dangers
When aluminum foil comes into direct contact with food, these foods absorb the metal. Cooking at high heat leads to even more leaching. Since aluminum foil is almost exclusively used for cooking and baking, it’s a serious cause for concern (1).
1. Brain Effects
As you may have heard, aluminum has a tendency to accumulate in the brain and other tissues, making aluminum exposure a serious risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease and other neurodegenerative disorders (2). Researchers have even found that the metal has the ability to reduce the growth rate of human brain cells (3).
Aluminum competes with calcium to interfere with bone remineralization. This leads to aluminum accumulating in the bones and high calcium levels in the blood. In turn, patients suffer from low bone density, decreased parathyroid hormone levels, and high risk of heart attack and stroke (4).
Aluminum can be inhaled in small quantities when cooking foil-wrapped foods over an open flame. Aluminum that makes its way into your body through inhalation is harder for your body to purge than aluminum that’s been ingested or that’s made its way into your body through your skin (5).
Sources Of Exposure
Aluminum exposure isn’t obvious if you don’t know the risks, so here are a few ways you may be poisoning yourself and your family.
Small pieces of aluminum may break off foil after unwrapping foil-covered food. Plus, heat creates little cracks in the foil and makes it more likely to break food and make its way into your food. These flakes aren’t necessarily visible to the naked eye, so you may not even know it’s there.
Acidic foods and spices stored in aluminum containers or used alongside the metal during cooking speed up the leaching process. In fact, Dr. Essam Zubaidy, a chemical engineering researcher at the American University of Sharjah, discovered that just one meal cooked with tin foil can leach 400 mg of aluminum (5).
“The higher the temperature, the more the leaching. Foil is not suitable for cooking and is not suitable for using with vegetables like tomatoes, citrus juice or spices,” said Dr. Zubaidy.
However, the World Health Organization warns that the daily maximum safe ingestion level should not exceed 1 mg/kg of body weight (6).
What You Can Do
You can’t completely cut your aluminum intake if you eat processed foods, eat at restaurants, or live near industrial factories. Produce and tap water also contain alarming levels of the metal.
Here are a few things you can do to limit your exposure:
- Don’t cook food with aluminum foil. Instead, use porcelain or cast iron bakeware.
- Don’t store any spices or acidic foods in aluminum.
- Replace aluminum foil with wax paper when baking or storing hot foods.
- Store leftovers in glass reusable containers.
- Replace aluminum pots and pans as well as cooking utensils with stainless steel.
- Filter tap water to remove any heavy metals.
- 5 Unexpected Foods To Manage Your Waistline More Effectively
Conventional wisdom tells us to avoid many foods because of their “fattening” properties. But are these foods really as bad …
- 5 Foods You Should Stop Eating (and What To Eat Instead)
There are many foods in this world you would have been better off never eating. This is especially true for …
- 5 Reasons Why Eating This Large Berry Makes You More Resistant to Heart Disease
Often deemed a “perfect food,” the avocado is considered one of the healthiest foods available. Even a study published in Nutrition …
- The Spoils of Going GMO-Free: Chipotle Stock Hits an All-Time High After Announcing ‘Blockbuster Earnings’
When companies give customers what they want, the customers respond. Chipotle restaurants, now the biggest Mexican-style casual food chain in …
- Blueberry Bliss Bars (No Baking and Only 4 Ingredients!)
All you need is 4 simple ingredients to make these blueberry bliss bars! These delicious treats are vegan, gluten free …
- Dark Chocolate Improves Cardiovascular Health by Reducing Inflammation
Finally! Proof that something that makes us happy and tastes good is good for us. The incidence of cardiovascular disease …
- Make This Delicious And Easy Vegan Whipped Cream Recipe Using ONLY 3 Ingredients
If you’re lactose intolerant or simply prefer vegan recipes, you’ll love this! This vegan whipped cream is unlike anything you’ve …
- Major Signs You Are Magnesium Deficient (and What To Do About It!)
In today’s modern diet, most Americans don’t get much magnesium from the foods they eat. Like other vitamins and minerals, if …
- Honey and Ginger Kill Superbugs Better than Pharmaceutical Meds
Bacteria have been morphing into resistant strains of superbugs that make it very difficult for pharmaceutical companies to keep up …
- America’s #1 GMO Cookie that Causes Fatty Liver And Cancer
Oreo cookies are of America’s most well-loved and recognized treats. Throughout their 104-year legacy, the cookie brand has settled into …
- 5 Pleasing Sweet Potato Recipes. #3 Makes for a Healthy Breafkast.
Organic sweet potatoes are relatively cheap considering the amount of goodness they contain. They contain high levels of vitamin B6, …
- Scientists Find Pumpkin Seed Oil Causes 40% Hair Increase in Men With Alopecia.
Can The Great Pumpkin cure male pattern baldness? A new Korean study indicates that this might very well be true. From …
- Thyme Essential Oil Shows Signs of Killing Lung, Oral and Ovarian Cancer
Studies have found that this essential oil potently kills cancer cells. The essential oil of common thyme (Thymus vulgaris) which …
- Top 12 Most Pesticide-Heavy Fruits and Veggies of 2014
No one would deny that eating fruits and vegetables is good for you. They contain nutrients that are necessary to …
- Eating Fast Food Slows Down The Brain, Study Finds
By now most American parents know the super-size effects of fast food on their kids’ bodies (just ask McDonald’s how …