Healthy Cookware and Healthy Food Storage – Plastic vs Glass

Glass food storage with lids Through all of the reading and research I’ve been doing over the last few years about healthy living, two topics that are continuously brought up in the books and articles I’ve read, is that we need to take a serious look at what kind of cookware and food storage containers we’re using in our homes.

Junk the plastic food storage containers and switch to glass food storage; junk the non-stick Teflon cookware and switch to much healthier options like cast iron cookware, my personal favorite. Junk the microwave, or at least stop using the microwave, etc.

Occasionally bringing these topics up with friends and family leads to great in-depth discussion back and forth, with most of the naysayers suddenly becoming very quiet and deep in thought and finally coming to the conclusion that they too want to err on the side of caution and change their cookware and storage containers to much healthier and safer options. If not for themselves specifically, then for the benefit of their young children, grandchildren, or any house guests that come for meals.

My Aha! Moment about Healthy Living

I’ve had quite a few Aha! Moments over the last several years, beginning well before I started reading and researching the “dark side of dentistry”, as some have described fluoride, mercury amalgam fillings, root canals, etc. The Aha! moment, the sudden realization and full comprehension and clarity about a topic that stops you where you’re standing (or sitting), as the fog gradually clears from your mind and suddenly the clear blue skies of Truth are right before your eyes.

My most recent Aha! moment was the culmination of reading many books, watching many “healthy living” documentaries, and listening to several online lecture courses about the enormous toll that chemicals in food, water, and everyday products are having on our bodies and overall health over a lifetime. I don’t consider myself myself to be an environmentalist, a “foodie” etc. I love to learn, and I’ve been bombarding myself with piles and piles of books on many different topics, including what “healthy living” really means in the fullest extent. Because I want to know BOTH sides of the argument, the pro and con sides of many different topics, including what living a healthy lifestyle truly means.

Talking with several people who made the personal decision to dump their “toxic cookware” and plastic food storage containers over to healthier options, well before I ever thought to research or read about these things, helped show me how NOT to react. Some who’ve experienced an Aha! moment about using Teflon or aluminum cookware etc, BPA in plastics and other problems with plastic storage for foods, reacted by literally Freaking Out. They grabbed up all of their pots and pans, all of their storage containers made of plastic, plastic cooking and serving utensils, plastic drinking glasses etc – and hauled it all off to the dump, stopped at a store and bought brand new cast iron cookware sets and glass food storage containers and glass bakeware, all in one day. They literally Freaked Out over it, rather than taking a gradual approach, as I’ve been doing.

I love my cast iron dutch oven that came with a lid, and my two cast iron skillets, one large Lodge brand cast iron skillet and the other slightly smaller skillet is a Wagner brand. If I had not noticed the cast iron cookware pieces I found, bought in different places, I would have and planned to buy this Lodge brand cast iron cookware set. The smaller cast iron skillet (10 inch) I have was found in an Online Garage Sale, and it was in bad shape, dirty and rusted and looking rather gross. I didn’t care at all because I know how to refurbish and bring back the original luster of cast iron, and considering the price was a mere $5.00 compared to buying brand new, I’m not afraid of having to use a bit of elbow grease to clean up and season old cast iron.

Switching from plastic food storage containers to glass food storage is an easy choice. I didn’t have much in the way of plastic storage containers anyway, with many pieces being lost over the years or accidentally melted in the dishwasher. Being a home canner, I’ve got oodles of glass canning jars that I can use for storing and preserving foods or leftovers, but I still wanted a complete set of glass containers with lids to have on hand.

Comparing the brands and prices of buying individual glass food storage, some that include lids and some without, caused me to decide to buy a full, complete set of glass storage with lids included, rather than buying single pieces. We enjoy entertaining guests in our home, so having a large set of storage containers with several pieces in varying sizes, works best for us. This 20-piece Glasslock Snapware set is the one I chose over the smaller sets with only 12 or 18 pieces sold by Pyrex brand. I also wanted some glass food storage with glass lids where you can bake, serve, store and reheat from the same dish, so I’m buying some of these Anchor Hocking glass dish with lid containers in different sizes to add to my much-needed collection.

For me, learning more and more about living the healthiest lifestyle possible is fun and educational, rather than something to “freak out” over. Making gradual adjustments in how we live our lives, reducing as many of the toxic chemicals as possible, replacing toxic substances with much safer and healthier alternatives, just makes sense.

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10 Responses to “Healthy Cookware and Healthy Food Storage – Plastic vs Glass”

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  1. I don’t have the “luxury” of keeping plastics around. With the exception of one or two containers (that aren’t used for cooking), everything is non-plastic such as glass or ceramic.

    As far as a microwave oven goes, I only use it for heating or reheating, not for cooking. I tried cooking by microwave in the 80s and it turned out horrible-tasting.

    Progress, as it seems, isn’t always progress.
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    • Lin says:

      I haven’t ever tried to actually cook anything in a microwave, but have heated some things it in the past. I haven’t used it for anything in quite awhile and dont miss it.

    • Steve Bailey says:

      Agree with what you say about microwave cooking to an extent, but not entirely though.
      We’ve found that there are fewer better ways of cooking vegetables such as carrots, beans, peas and so on – it’s quick and keeps the color and flavor far better than boiling.
      Also a few minutes in the microwave is a great way to start off cooking chicken, before putting it on the barbecue. It makes sure that the chicken is cooked through – there’s nothing worse (or more risky) than serving chicken that’s pink in the middle.

  2. Lou says:

    This is an interesting post! We are very careful about putting water in non BPA plastic but I hadn’t really thought about all our plastic storage at home. We were on the cusp of buying some more plastic containers because we’re running low, but now I’ll think about getting some glass ones instead…
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  3. whealthy says:

    A few years ago I read a book about the chemical impact of cooking in plastic and replaced my whole kitchenware to cermics and glass.
    I also drink my water from a BPA free plastic that I bought at Sports Basement.

  4. Emma says:

    My sister has been on me for quite some time to get rid of my plastic storage items. It certainly makes sense and I’m slowly making the change over.

  5. Peggy says:

    Thank you so much for this share. Perhaps it’s your writing style or just the final convincing moment that tells me I need to begin making these switches myself. I have a serious question though when it comes to teflon to cast iron, are there cast iron pans out there now that are any better about being stick-free than they were … 20 years ago? That is literally all I can remember about them, needing to grease them down insanely to avoid sticking. Thank you again for a great post.

  6. Chef Jackets says:

    I have always been a fan of using glass as much as possible. I also prefer it for drinking out of vs a can or even plastic. Same goes for coffee – really hate to drink out of paper, much prefer a nice mug. Funny Story –
    I did have an incident once with glass where I accidenlty left a glass dish on the stove. I heard the distinct hissing of the glass. I was able to turn off the stove but knew it was otherwise too late. BLAM!!! it exploded in a million pieces.

    Fortunatley my mother made the same mistake when I was little so I knew what to expect and was not in the room when it happened. There was glass everywhere. I don’t use the microwave much but it does come in handy from time to time.

  7. Chris says:

    I agree with not using the microwave. I don’t think we have used them long enough to know the long term effects. I don’t see how radiating food is a good thing. I have read that red blood cells, viewed under a microscope after someone has consumed food from the microwave look like someone that has leukemia.

    I re-heat all my food up on the stove, usually by just steaming.