there are great fear that foods served at fast food eateries in the country may be contaminated with hazardous poisons.

A concerned reader of The Maravi Post expressed  great fear that the foods served at fast food eateries in the country may be contaminated with hazardous poisons.

According to the concerned reader, who is a working mom, she is fond of grabbing fast food packs for her young children as she picks and drops them at home from school. One day she asked that the food order packs at her children’s favorite fast food, be heated so the children could eat the food in the car, on their way home.

When she returned to her car to get back to work, she felt nauseated by fumes emanating in her car. It was filled with an odor like burnt plastic.

When she read The Maravi Post article “MBS bans liquor in plastic bottles in Malawi,” she was convinced the MBS should also ban the use of plastics to heat food at fast foods restaurants.

In the said article, published in The Maravi Post in April 12, it was announced that the Malawi Bureau of Standards (MBS), which is the statutory organisation mandated to promote Malawi metrology, standardization, and quality assurance of commodities and of the manufactures, banned the packaging of liquor (spirits) in plastic bottles.

The standardization body through a press statement dated 10 April, 2017,  disclosed that the MBS had banned packaging spirits in sachets and plastic bottles in July, 2010, but some manufacturers in the country, had obtained court injunctions against the ban.

“On 4 January, 2017, the High Court of Malawi made a ruling on Case No. 67 of 2015, in favour of the MBS that manufacturing, packaging, distribution, and sale of liquor in sachets and plastic bottles, is illegal in Malawi.” reads part of the statement.

Through social media this week, the concerned reader received the usual coterie of pass-Ins; one of them caught her attention. She shared with The Maravi Post Senior Editor.

We quote: A friend of ours became very sick after drinking water left in a car overnight and she was ill for a couple of months.

Bottled water in your car is also very dangerous.

On television show, Sheryl Crow said that this is what caused her breast cancer.  It has been identified as the most common cause of the high levels of dioxin in breast cancer tissue.

Sheryl Crow’s oncologist told her: women should not drink bottled water that has been left in a car.  The heat reacts with the chemicals in the plastic of the bottle. which releases dioxin into the water. Dioxin is a toxin increasingly found in breast cancer tissue.

So please be careful and do not drink bottled water that has been left in a car.

Use a stainless steel container or a glass bottle instead of plastic.

This information is also being circulated at Walter Reed Army Medical Center.

There should be no plastic containers in microwaves either; no plastic water bottles in freezers; AND no plastic wrap in microwaves.

Dioxin chemical found in plastic containers and plastic wraps, causes cancer, especially breast cancer. Dioxins are highly poisonous to cells in our bodies.

We should not freeze plastic bottles with water in them as this releases dioxins from the plastic.

Recently the Wellness Program Manager at Castle Hospital, was on a TV program to explain this health hazard.

He talked about dioxins and how bad they are for humans. He said that we should not be heat food in the microwave using plastic containers. This especially applies to foods that contain fat.

He said that the combination of fat, high heat and plastic releases dioxin into the food.

He recommends using glass, such as Pyrex or ceramic containers to heat food: You get the same result, but without the dioxin.

So, such things as TV dinners, instant soups, fast foods in plastic containers, etc., should be removed from their containers and heated in something else.

Although paper isn’t bad, but don’t know how the paper was processed (wood to paper is bleached); it never easy to know what is in the paper. The doctor recommended that we use tempered glass, such as Pyrex, which are safer.

He reminded us that a while ago some of the fast food restaurants moved away from the styrene foam containers to paper. The dioxin problem is one of the reasons.

He also pointed out that plastic wrap, such as  cling film, is just as dangerous when placed over foods to be cooked in the microwave.

As the food is nuked, the high heat causes poisonous toxins to actually melt out of the plastic wrap and drip into the food. The food should instead be covered with a paper towel or another plate.

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