Do you want to stop using so much plastic but are finding it hard to avoid? Maybe you have a favorite Nalgene you are just never going to part with. Or you (I..?) have a cabinet full of old “Tupperware” you’re still using for leftovers.

Whatever your plastic attachment, I’ve got some news for ya: You CAN help prevent plastic from leaching harmful chemicals into your food and drinks! Call them your “Rules for Plastic Use.”

Actually.. I’m going to call them just that.

Rules for Plastic Use

  1. Never put plastic in the microwave. Look, I know your Ziploc container says it’s “microwave safe,” but what they actually mean by that is that the plastic won’t melt in the microwave! The bottom line is that the chemicals in plastic, some of which have been shown to be harmful to humans, break down when that plastic is exposed to extreme temperatures, including getting really hot in the microwave. So take those leftovers and those frozen meals out of their plastic containers and dump them into a ceramic or glass bowl instead.
  2. Never put plastic in the dishwasher. Instead, wash plastic by hand with cool water. Yes, I know it’s a pain, and it’s going to take some getting used to. But if you’re going to store food and drinks in plastic, it’s best to keep those temperature neutral, and the dishwasher gets awfully hot. Keep your plastic stable and prevent leaching — hand wash.
  3. Don’t freeze your plastic. Again, extreme temperatures can cause the plastic to break down and leach into your food or beverage. Instead, use Pyrex glass or jars meant for canning (like Ball jars) to freeze foods.
  4. Avoid storing fatty, salty, and acidic foods in plastic. Food high in fat, like baked goods, acidic foods, like tomato sauce, and salty foods, like olives, work to break down plastic and release its chemicals. Avoid storing these types of food in plastic.

What do YOU think?

Do you want to keep using the plastic you have in your kitchen, or would you prefer to get rid of it? Let us know in the comments!