Can You Microwave Tupperware? Why You Should Avoid Microwaving Plastic Packaged Food
For decades, plastic has been the go-to for food packaging – it’s cheap, durable, easy to transport, and supposedly microwave safe. However, studies in recent years have made people question this – can you microwave Tupperware? What about other types of plastic? Here’s what you need to know.
Can You Microwave Tupperware?
When you search online whether or not you can microwave Tupperware, you’ll find that Tupperware proudly states that it’s BPA-free and thus safe to microwave. This is a step that many plastic food container companies have taken in response to the findings of recent studies.
BPA, or bisphenol A, is a chemical typically in rigid plastic. It also happens to be a weak synthetic estrogen, which means when it enters the human body it can disrupt our hormones.
This is an issue because when plastic containers made from polypropylene or polyethylene, each containing BPA, come in contact with high temperatures, the plastic breaks down and leaches chemicals into whatever food or drink they may contain.
Why You Should Avoid Microwaving All Plastic
While BPA seems to be making its way out, studies show that replacements are also potentially hazardous. In order to get similar effects in other plastics, producers have switched to related alternatives: bisphenol S (BPS) and bisphenol F (BPF).
One study found that children with higher levels of these chemicals in their urine had a higher likelihood of being obese than children with lower levels. Additionally, other BPA-free polycarbonate alternatives have been shown to leach chemicals with estrogenic activity. This includes polycarbonate replacements using polystyrene, acrylic, polyethersulfone, and Tritan resins.
Ultimately, it appears that whether plastic contains BPA or BPA alternatives, it’s safest to avoid heating or microwaving it all together. Where possible, avoiding plastic completely is the best thing you can do for your health and for the planet.
Alternatives to Tupperware and Plastic Food Containers
To avoid plastic food containers, consider trying the following:
- Glass jars: Reusing old jars, like pasta sauce or peanut butter jars is best! If not, try these. You can also microwave glass, though you may need to cover the top with a paper towel if your jar has a metal lid.
- Metal containers: Although you can’t microwave them, metal containers are great for food storage – plus, they last virtually forever! This is a great option.
- Stasher bags: For cold foods and snacks, Stasher bags are an excellent alternative to plastic baggies and plastic wrap.
Next time someone asks can you microwave Tupperware – let them know what the risks are! If you’re looking for more plastic-free kitchen content, check out my post on zero waste kitchen swaps here.
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