If you’re wondering is copper cookware safe, read on before trying out your new copper souvenir.
During a trip to Brazil a number of years ago, my wife and I stopped by the side of a windy mountain road where an artisan had set up a stand to sell beautiful handcrafted copper products. We purchased a set of beautiful copper pots and pans from him. The oversized pans were seemingly perfect for cooking and serving large groups of people. My wife and I both loved the rustic look of the cookware.
Unfortunately, what I have since learned is that the use of copper pots and pans for cooking is dangerous to your health. Just as aluminum can leach into food, the same is true of copper pots and pans. Large amounts of copper, either in a single dose or over a short period of time, can leach into your food and be poisonous. It has been suggested that Alzheimer’s disease may be caused by excessive copper ingestion.
The amount of copper required to create toxicity, however, is unclear — but for me, the question of is copper cookware safe was answered. It is true that a small amount of copper as a trace mineral is important for one’s everyday health, but cooking with a copper pot is not recommended. For this reason, most commercially sold copper cookware is surface-coated with a safer metal so that the copper doesn’t come into contact with one’s food. These pots and pans are safe to use as long as the coating remains intact. Our copper pots and pans are now only used for decoration.