Fear not there is cookware out there that will not only keep you and your families toxin load low, but will also stand the test of time! In fact it might even have some added benefits for not only you, but the environment.
1. Cast iron
Cast iron is well know for its longevity and durability. It can even be made non-stick if you season it correctly. It is a great way to get more iron into your diet and we also find it makes our food taste that much better. People who most benefit from cooking in cast iron are menstruating and pregnant women, vegetarians and growing children as they need higher levels of iron in their diets. The effect is so reliable that iron cookware has occasionally been used to combat anaemia.
2. Stainless steel cookware
This is a great more lightweight option that can withstand the wear and tear from everyday cooking. One of the major advantages of stainless steel is that it’s resistant to rust or corrosion. Stainless steel is considered by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) as safe for food contact as long as it has at least 16% chromium. Though it isn’t quite as inert as some people claim, it is still more stable and safer than other more reactive cookware like copper and aluminium. Just make sure you go for stainless steel grades like 18/8 or 18/0 which have lower nickel content (the first number is the % chromium content and the second is % nickel content). Ideally, you’ll want to get a 400 series stainless steel, but 300 series ones are okay too. Stay away from cookware labelled 200 series as they have been shown to leach high levels of heavy metals into your food.
Glass is made of sand, soda ash and limestone which is melted and cast. It has been used for millennia and does not leach any toxins into your food. It is a tried and true material that is super eco-friendly. The only downside is that it's not non-stick. But, nothing that can't be fixed with a soak and a bit of elbow grease.
Some key advantages of glass cookware are that it responds well for most oven based cooking, it does not react with acidic foods, safely stores all foods in it, and most importantly it is healthy as there are no adverse side effects from cooking in it. It is also safe for the environment.
4. 100% Ceramic
This is one of the safest options, but the biggest downside is it can be very pricey. However, if you are able to invest in 100% ceramic it will last you a life time with no flaking or chipping into your food. 100% ceramic cookware is made from naturally occurring minerals such as clay and quartz sand that are kiln baked and specially glazed. Ceramic vessels do not leach any toxic chemicals into your food when you cook with them. However, like glassware it's not not-stick so you end up needing to use an oil to prevent food sticking. Just make sure the glaze used on the ceramic is lead-free.
We have not looked back giving up on the convenience of non-stick cookware. We have fallen in love with the added flavour benefits from using cookware that is better for you and more environmentally friendly. Choosing safer alternative cookware is an easy way to help reduce the toxin load of you and your family.