help me create a non-toxic kitchen! - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 21 Old 02-23-2010, 12:12 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I thought I was doing well in my slow quest for a non-toxic home. Now let's look at the kitchen, shall we? I know the pots and pans and flatware are OK (stainless steel and cast iron.)

I just got rid of our Rival slow cooker and got a Hamilton Beach one (I know it is not totally lead free but it is as close as one can get with a slow cooker, so I have researched.)

I am now also using a Le Creuset glazed cast iron dutch oven as well, which I have researched online and they state that their glaze are lead free and their non red/orange colors are cadmium free. We have a black one with sand color inside so I think we are good.

But what about our
-pyrex clear and blue baking dishes (I think pyrex is fine but would like conformation)
-Corningware French White baking stoneware dishes (I can't find an answer to this one)
-And our dinnerware? We currently have "Sango" cheap-y dinnerware from Bed Bath and Beyond. I have no idea if there is lead or other heavy metals in the glaze. It worries me.

I am looking to replace the dishes with either FiestaWare (made in the USA and the only dinnerware that guarantees they are lead free--but does contain a pre-aluminum compound?) Or Corelle (which does contain a low amount of lead but lower than others out there?) Or is there a better alternative?

I know it's never going to be perfect but I'm really trying here. Can anyone help me out?

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#2 of 21 Old 02-23-2010, 12:53 AM
 
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holy crud. cheap dishes often have lead?!!! we use cheapo dishes from target that I got a couple years ago. I always thought pyrex and corning wear were fine. I'm pretty dang sure they are inert.

and my martha stewart le cruset imitation dutch oven might have heavy metals too? oy vey.

I'm going to have to research everything now. I knew about crockpots, of course, but not the rest. I always assumed they were safe if sold here. (which I suppose is silly since crock pots aren't.)

Caroline, partner to J, post partum doula, kitchen manager, aspiring midwife, soon to be nursing student, mama to my furbaby, someday a mama to not so furry munchkins, G-d willing
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#3 of 21 Old 02-23-2010, 05:15 AM
 
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I thought I was doing well in my slow quest for a non-toxic home. Now let's look at the kitchen, shall we? I know the pots and pans and flatware are OK (stainless steel and cast iron.)
Stainless steel is not entirely safe; stainless steel alloys all contain nickel, chromium, molybdenum, iron, carbon, and various other metals. In addition, higher temperatures will always increase the rate of leaching these metals into your food.

Dr. Mercola has a lot of info regarding the safety of stainless steel in his site. I personally use only the Le Creuset cast iron range.
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#4 of 21 Old 02-23-2010, 04:26 PM
 
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Just looked this up, and eek! Here's a site that's pretty informative, though not alarmist (it's actually extolling the benefits of 18/10 stainless steel cookware). Can't believe I didn't look this up earlier!

The other problem with stainless steel is that it's often coated in aluminum (for even cooking). And sometimes (usually?), it doesn't state this it on the pan. That's actually why we threw ours out. We thought we had stainless and then realized we were cooking with aluminum. So, we switched to Le Creuset. Hubby worked for them at the time, so we didn't have to spend very much to get the pieces (still, waaay more than I was used to spending, though, even with the 75% off!). For a slow cooker, we got their tagine and threw out our old crock pot.

I'm not sure about the white stoneware, so I stopped using ours. Instead, I switched to (I sound like a broken record) Le Creuset's bakeware, which is lead-free. Silicon baking dishes might not be too expensive - I just wonder about the coloring....

We switched from Corelle to Fiestaware because of the lead. I *loved* my Corelle dishes and had been eating off them since I was a child. Sigh.... (I have a few hanging on my wall, now - I think they're the Blue Danube pattern, only with normal, round edges?). Hubby also worked at a place that sold select Fiesta dishes, so we waited for sales and used his employee discount. Still more than I wanted to spend, but.... (I work in a thrift store, so I was hoping for something like $.99 a dish!) Oh, be careful buying Fiestaware used - they used to contain lead. Look for pieces that have "lead free" stamped on the bottom.

Switched to all glass drinking cups and storage, of course - Pyrex for the refrigerator and for taking places, glass jars/canisters for the pantry, etc. Also switched our utensils (some were plastic) to stainless steel, wooden and silicon (still worried about the colors, though).

Newest addition to our low-toxin kitchen is a lead-free water crock (found for $5 at a thrift store - yay!) and a glass carboy for water. We get fluoride-free (reverse osmosis filtered) water from a machine at the Whole Foods.

By the way, is anyone planning to read Slow Death by Rubber Duck? I just stumbled across an NPR article about it yesterday. Sounds interesting.... Usually, though, it's years after a book comes out that I end up reading it (not the best library in the world (and have to pay for inter-library loan), and it takes a while before I find it at a thrift store or in the $1 section at the Half Price Books). If anyone reads it, I'd love to hear what you think! Scary stuff!

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#5 of 21 Old 02-23-2010, 08:07 PM
 
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There are different varieties of Corelle- the thin plates that are common, then the heavier stoneware type. The last time I researched this, the thinking was that the thin ones were fine as they are some type of glass, as is Pyrex. Does anyone have a link to where they discovered that all Corelle is not safe? I don't like stoneware as it is heavy and tends to chip.
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#6 of 21 Old 02-23-2010, 10:11 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I have one Le Creuset cast iron 7 qt dutch oven and I love it. It's cooking a pot roast right now as we speak. However it was 200 dollars. I am getting one more (4 qt smaller dutch oven) but then the "bank is broken" as we say. I think my stainless steel pots and pans are just going to have to also be used.

Thanks for the info RE: Fiestaware. I'm going to replace all my cheapy Target stuff with them little by little.

I wish I could find out about the white Cornigware stoneware issue, and if Hamilton Beach crockpots are safe. I called them (HB) today and they said NO Lead, No Cadmium. But are they telling the truth?

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#7 of 21 Old 02-23-2010, 11:35 PM
 
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Does anyone have a link to where they discovered that all Corelle is not safe? I don't like stoneware as it is heavy and tends to chip.
I went back and forth on this. I found sites that claim the white (no pattern) Corelle dishware is safe, and others that said, not so. Here's a site where some were discussing it a while back. I figured I just wasn't going to chance it. Besides, it would seem that if a company didn't use lead, they'd shout it from the rooftops (like Fiesta). I think I must have become a cynic somewhere along the way; I generally just assume the worst.

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#8 of 21 Old 02-24-2010, 01:38 AM - Thread Starter
 
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As far as the stoneware insert in the HB crockpots, do you think it matters what color it is? HB says all colors are lead and cadmium free. But there is a choice between white and black. I just want to have all my bases covered before I order in case one might be less toxic in case the company is lying. Yeah, can you tell I don't trust corporations either?

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#9 of 21 Old 02-24-2010, 08:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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anyone have any thoughts on if stoneware color matters as far as leaching?

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#10 of 21 Old 02-24-2010, 08:18 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Ooh! Also Fiesta is having an amazing sale on Amazon right now for a set.

http://www.amazon.com/Fiesta-20-Piec...7053516&sr=8-2

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#11 of 21 Old 05-29-2012, 09:45 AM
 
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I know this is an old thread to resurrect, but is anyone concerned about the aluminum used in the stoneware of fiestaware? I emailed them and got this response, "Aluminum Oxide is added to the ceramic body to provide added strength and chip resistance.  It is not in the glaze and cannot leach out of the product.
Aluminum Oxide is added to the body of nearly all restaurant china and you have been exposed to it all of your life.  There is no danger to health or the environment."
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#12 of 21 Old 05-29-2012, 09:46 AM
 
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I'm not sure I trust it, and I'd I am replacing my old made in china stoneware, I want it to be safe. I was thinking duralwx as my other option, but fiestaware is just so fun!
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#13 of 21 Old 05-30-2012, 03:36 PM
 
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I got the duralex dinner plates and bowls for christmas and I love them! I like that they are not as heavy as stoneware.

http://www.duralexusa.com/Lys-Clear-Bowls-cat3.html

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#14 of 21 Old 07-08-2012, 09:42 PM
 
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I got the duralex and love it!
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#15 of 21 Old 12-07-2012, 08:31 AM
 
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Does anyone have concerns about the barium oxide in Duralex? I thought they were the perfect option, until I discovered (through their email response to my inquiry) that their glass recipe includes barium oxide (BaO). BaO is apparently used as a replacement for lead oxide in glass - obviously better than lead, but typical soda-lime glass doesn't contain either lead or barium oxide...

 

Thanks for the info about the aluminum oxide in Fiestaware - I was wondering about that. If it's sealed within the glaze, I imagine it's probably fine...but it would be nice if it wasn't there at all! 

 

Still searching for the perfect non-toxic dinnerware...

 


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#16 of 21 Old 01-18-2013, 02:49 AM
 
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I got duralex yesterday. And I love it very much. I think creating a non-toxic kitchen is based on how you uses a things in a kitchen. I have a white kitchen cabinets and I always take first priority for cleaning a kitchen cabinets. After that it is necessary to keep away a junk food. Sometimes junk food can be responsible for creating a toxic and if you eat it then it can harm you. Also, use a clean cloths and other kitchen materials so that it will not spread an infection.
 

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#17 of 21 Old 01-18-2013, 06:42 AM
 
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Thank you so much for the information regarding barium oxide in Duralex.     I had finally come to terms with the fact that clear glass dinnerware was looking like the safest option of them all.  

It was between Duralex and Libbey........now the choice has been made.     Any additional information is always appreciated. 

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#18 of 21 Old 01-28-2013, 12:00 PM
 
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A big help in this regard is to eliminate all soft plastics. Do not use plastic wraps, plastic bags, flexible food containers, etc. Also do not use coated paper ("grease-resistent" plates and paper cups). All of these items leach toxins into food and drinks. Avoid buying food packaged in these materials.

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#19 of 21 Old 06-12-2013, 06:55 PM
 
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Glass (including pyrex), and stoneware are non-toxic unless they are made with lead (lead crystal), or lead glazes. Only imported items from countries with less stringent regulations would have lead glaze. Barium and other additives should not leach if they are done right. If they are from a reputable company I would trust that. Parrafin wax on waxed paper is not a concern. But parrafin does get toxic if you cook it or burn it in a candle. The issue of stainless steel is not totally clear, Dr Mercola does talk about possible risks but states that he has not seen any studies about it leaching. He recommends ceramic covered steel pots and pans and ceramic and glass cookware. Of course teflon and plastic are very harmful, we know that now.

 

I think a bigger concern is cabinetry, countertops, appliances and flooring. Conventional cabinets contain pressed woods which contain formaldehyde, laminate counters are a plastic that is glued down to a substrate of pressed wood (toxins in glue and in pressed woods), marble and slate contain chemical sealants, grout and caulking using contains chemical additives, appliances contain many chemicals throughout the plastic, wiring, glues etc, as well as high levels of EMFs. Vinyl flooring contains high levels of VOCs etc.. I write about how to choose chemical-free materials for the kitchen in my blog http://mychemicalfreehouse.blogspot.ca/2013/01/a-non-toxic-kitchen.html

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#20 of 21 Old 12-02-2013, 12:57 PM
 
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I know this is an old thread but any thoughts on these dishes?we have several pieces of Anchor Hocking bakeware,measuring cups,etc and are thinking about adding dishes.

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#21 of 21 Old 12-11-2013, 01:44 PM
 
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I prefer glass dishes over stoneware or plastic. I use a lot of anchor-hocking products and like them for their ease and quality.
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