Are you using your microwave to make healthy eating easier? Some people continue to be fearful that using a microwave can somehow harm their health, or reducing the nutritional value of their vegetables, but this is not the case.
When you learn a little bit about how microwaves work, it can help you realize how they are cooking your vegetables, and that there is no harm being done. Microwaves use a type of energy that resembles radio waves, but they are shorter. These energy waves affect mostly the water and moisture in foods. With one end of the wave positively charged, and one end negatively charged, microwaves cause the molecules in foods to vibrate and heat up quickly.
Although some nutrients do decompose a bit when exposed to heat, either from a microwave or regular oven, microwave cooking times are shorter and cause less break down. This is particularly true for vitamin C, which is affected more by heat exposure.
Any time you cook veggies in water, you will reduce their nutritional quality a little bit. This is because the water leaches out some of the nutrients. When you boil broccoli, you will remove some of the glucosinolate, which is a sulfur containing compound that is thought to help fight cancer. It also contributes to the taste of the broccoli. Steaming veggies helps them hold onto more of their nutrients.
It is important to cook veggies for the shortest amount of time and use a method that helps to retain the most nutrients. When you cook your veggies using a microwave, you are doing just this. Microwaving your vegetables with a small amount of water helps to steam them from the inside out and retain most of the vitamins and minerals.
Veggies are still good for you, regardless of how you prepare them. But using a microwave oven is not only convenient, but can help you keep your veggies as nutrient-filled as possible.