Do You Use Teflon Frying Pans? Then You Should Be Aware of the Health Risks

Written by Henrik Rothen

Mar.13 - 2024 9:46 PM CET

Photo: Wiki Commons
Photo: Wiki Commons
Do you also use non-stick frying pans in your kitchen? Then watch out! They are often coated with Teflon, which is considered worrying.

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What is Teflon?

Thanks to the non-stick coating, hardly anything sticks or burns these days. You can clean your pans easily and in no time. Wipe out with kitchen paper – and you’re done! But do you also know why it’s so easy?

Many frying pans are coated with Teflon.

The term refers to a plastic called polytetrafluoroethylene, or PTFE for short. The production of this material is very complex and also has a negative impact on the environment.

Is Teflon Harmful to Health?

Teflon is considered controversial and rightly so. Although the non-stick effect is practical, the chemical compound PTFE can have detrimental effects on your health.

Not only people, but especially animals are harmed when, for example, Teflon is absorbed as vapor through the air we breathe.

This happens when Teflon-coated frying pans are heated too high. Temperatures above 360°C cause Teflon to evaporate. Some scientists even believe that lower temperatures are sufficient.

The consequences of Teflon poisoning have been determined in animal experiments. It was found that Teflon damages the liver, weakens the immune system, impairs fat metabolism and the thyroid and has a carcinogenic effect. Pregnant and breastfeeding women in particular should avoid Teflon.

Teflon is Found in Many Things

Teflon is not only used in the coating of many frying pans. This material is also used to make some functional clothing. Additionally, Teflon can be found in paint, eyeglass lenses, implants, gaskets, razor blades, and even dental floss.

The main advantage here is its water-repellent and slippery properties.

There are Alternatives to Teflon Frying Pans

It's best to avoid frying pans that are coated with Teflon! Even if they are usually cheap and comfortable. Instead, you can use cast iron skillets or stainless steel skillets.

There are also frying pans that have a ceramic coating. Ceramic coating is definitely non-toxic. Since devices for raclette can also contain Teflon, you should pay attention to the manufacturer's instructions and it is best to use devices that are not coated with Teflon.

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