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Microwave Ovens—What’s Safe, What’s Not

Microwave OvenHere’s a nice holiday gift—one less thing to worry about.  The December, 2010 issue of the Tufts University Health & Nutrition Letter assures readers that, if used properly, microwave ovens present no health risks.  The newsletter points out that the FDA tests microwave ovens to be sure that they meet safety standards and do not present any radiation hazard.  “The FDA has never received any reports of radiation injury as a direct result of microwave exposure,” says the Tufts publication, “and there is little cause for concern about radiation leakage unless the door latch, hinges or seals are damaged.”

 

If You Don't Know Beans about Beans...

beansHow many different types of beans can you name?  Maybe 8 - 10?  Well, you missed a few. Wikipedia says, "The world's gene banks hold about 40,000 bean varieties, although only a fraction are mass-produced for regular consumption."  Why are the others being ignored? Food process engineer Dr. Timothy Bowser explains that mass-produced beans generally come from a few cultivated varieties that have special qualities which have been proven over the years to work well for growers, processors, and consumers.

Mustard and a Money-Saving Message

Many people who are concerned about food contamination tell me that they throw out everything in their fridge that's one week past the expiration (or "best by") date.  Let me first reiterate this important point:  in general, expiration dates (or /sell by/use by/best by dates)  are NOT about safety; they are about quality.

 

Going Away for All or Part of the Winter? Prepare Your Kitchen for your Absence

Fridge

If you’re going to be vacationing away from home for a few weeks or even months, lucky you!  But you won’t feel so lucky if you come home to a smelly or germ-laden refrigerator and a freezer with a sticky mess of melted ice cream. When considering the proper way to prepare your kitchen for your absence, consider your answers to these questions:

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