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Battling the MSG Myth » Archive » Help! I Have a Question » Microwaving « Previous Next »

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Posted on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 3:43 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Does microwaving high protein foods release free glutamates? I know that they are often released during processing due to the high temperatures so I was wondering if the radiation breaks down the protein in a similar manner.
Carol H
Posted on Sunday, January 21, 2001 - 4:00 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)


How a microwave oven works is by flipping water molecules back and forth and what actually heats the food is the heat of this friction. Generally, the temperatures involved stay close to boiling water - 212 degrees, that's why its so darn hard to brown meat in a microwave - browning needs temps of at least 250. Chemical bonds are broken most easily in processing by adding energy, in other words - high heat. Microwaving is essentially steaming a food with its own liquid. That's why meat tastes steamed when microwaved. Generally, I think microwaving at home is safer than heating to very high temps in processing. However, you should note, that a food very high in fat, and low in moisture, such as bacon can attract microwaves as well because of the fat molecules. Bacon can get much hotter than 212 degrees in a microwave.
Posted on Monday, January 22, 2001 - 2:54 pm:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)
Carol H
Posted on Sunday, January 28, 2001 - 7:02 am:   Delete PostPrint Post   Ban Poster IP (Moderator/Admin only)

Another link
When researching articles about foods, notice whether the link is on a site that sells healthfoods, and may profit from scaring you. For example: If it is true, as some articles on food-selling sites claim, that such violent reactions from "flipping" water molecules practically obliterate the chemical structure of foods - then why do fragile vitamins survive microwaving better than they survive conventional heating? I found many articles about the hazards of microwaves, but these more pertained to effects on whole, living, breathing humans, which generally do not wind up inside microwave ovens, if they can help it. By all means, take precautions to make sure your microwave does not leak. It also may be a good idea not to stand in front of it too, just in case. I was in a physics lecture once where the professor was demonstrating bouncing microwaves off the blackboard to a receiver. He forgot to turn it off and stepped in front of the transmitter. He sheepishly grinned when he realized his error and joked in a polite British accent, "I was wondering why I was getting rather warm" :) I guess what I mean to say is - resist the urge to be afraid. I don't own a cell phone, and I probably won't buy one, but I "nuke" my food all the time.

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