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Number of posts : 10
Registration date : 2009-01-23

PostSubject: Teflon   Thu Feb 12, 2009 4:24 am

Hi All,

See the below regarding Teflon and dangers - as well as some tips. I have been buying organic/natural make up products and sometimes they send through some really interesting information.

The potentially toxic chemicals in non-stick products are perfluorochemicals, which use the elements fluorine and carbon to make non-stick and stain-resistant coatings. Perfluorochemicals have a molecular structure that prevents them from mixing well with water or oil, which is why they are so useful in numerous consumer items – but there’s a catch.

Scientists are now focusing on two members of this chemical family for potential toxicity: perfluorooctanoic acid, or PFOA for short, and perfluorooctanyl sulfonate, or PFOS. The chemicals have been used to make some of the world's most famous brand names, including Teflon and Scotchgard. They can be found in such items as non-stick cookware, water or stain resistant clothing and carpets, some fast-food wrappers (which resist grease), pizza boxes, microwave popcorn containers, nail polishes and shaving cream.

DuPont Co. said its Teflon frying pans and other kitchenware are safe if used properly (at temperatures they are intended to be used). However, in two to five minutes on a conventional stovetop, cookware coated with Teflon and other non-stick surfaces can exceed temperatures at which the coating breaks apart and emits toxic particles and gases. These toxins are linked to pet bird deaths and an unknown number of human illnesses each year, according to tests commissioned by Environmental Working Group (EWG). DuPont studies show that the Teflon off-gases toxic particulates at 230°C/446°F. At 360°C/680°F Teflon pans release at least six toxic gases, including two carcinogens, two global pollutants, and MFA, a chemical lethal to humans at low doses. At temperatures that DuPont scientists claim are reached on stovetop drip pans (538°C/1000°F), their non-stick coatings br! eak down to a chemical warfare agent known as PFIB, and a chemical analog of the WWII nerve gas phosgene. For the past fifty years DuPont has claimed that their Teflon coatings do not emit hazardous chemicals through normal use. In a recent press release, DuPont wrote that "significant decomposition of the coating will occur only when temperatures exceed about 348°C/660°F. These temperatures alone are well above the normal cooking range." These new tests show that cookware exceeds these temperatures and turns toxic through the common act of preheating a pan, on a burner set on high.

Tips on Safer Cookware:
After nearly five decades of extensive consumer and industrial use, some of the chemicals behind the popular brand names have been linked to cancers and even deaths in laboratory animals. When heated, cookware coated with Teflon and other non-stick surfaces emits fumes that can kill birds and potentially sicken people. You can avoid exposures to the fumes from Teflon and other non-stick cookware by phasing out your home use of these products. If you can afford to replace your non-stick cookware now, do so.

1) Stainless Steel
Stainless steel is a terrific alternative to a non-stick cooking surface. Most chefs agree that stainless steel browns foods better than non-stick surfaces.

2) Gastrolux Cookware
It is the only range of non-stick cookware we have found that is tested not to produce toxic emissions, and has a non-stick surface that really works well. Click here to check out our range of Gastrolux cookware.

3) Cast iron
Cast iron remains a great alternative to non-stick cooking surfaces. Cast iron can be pre-heated to temperatures that will brown meat and will withstand oven temperatures well above what is considered safe for non-stick pans.
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