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Are Air Fryers Toxic? – Concerns And Possible Mitigation

We are becoming more and more health-conscious in the modern world. Modern kitchen appliances are helping us in our initiatives to produce healthier food. If we make a list of such appliances, then the air fryer will be on the top. With so many positives we hear about the air fryers, sometimes it is also said that the air fryer can be toxic. In this article, we will try to debunk the claim that the air fryer can be toxic. First, we will discuss the cooking principle of an air fryer so that you understand whether there is any chance to produce toxicity. Afterward, I will discuss the possible shortcomings of an air fryer with ideas to overcome these. Finally, I will tell you the methods on how you can get the best out of your air fryer.

Cooking principle of an air fryer

When you are cooking with an air fryer, you are cooking the food with hot air. Therefore, whether you use oil or not, the heat is passed through the food by convection of air. Not all air fryers cook the same way. A basic and small air fryer that does not have so many additional functions blows hot air from the bottom and circulates heat radiation from the top. On the other hand, a multi-functional air fryer has a 360-degree air circulation system that cooks the foods fast.

Air frying vs deep frying

In deep frying, heat is passed through the food by oil or fat that acts as a convection medium. In air fryer, heat is circulated through the food through hot air. Therefore, air fried food contains no or less amount of oil. As you know that oil is rich with calories. Less oil means fewer calories. Manufacturers of air fryers claim that the air frying process requires 70 to 80% less oil than that of deep-frying. This is the main value proposition of the air frying process over deep frying.

Generation of Harmful compounds

With all the benefits that you can get with an air fryer, it can also be responsible for harmful compounds. During cooking at a high temperature, food can get burnt. Charred food can be a source of the toxic compound. The risk of toxicity is not only associated with the air fryer. Any kind of frying with high temperatures can produce toxic compounds. Acrylamides are one of the major compounds that can be produced during frying. Apart from this, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons and heterocyclic amines can be produced during frying with high temperatures.

How to get rid of these compounds? Firstly, do not overcook foods. Use air fryers that have an overcooking indicator or alarm. If the food is burnt or charred, do not eat it. Secondly, you can not mitigate the risk of producing toxic compounds 100%. Therefore, to cook at a lower temperature. If possible, do not raise the temperature more than 350˚F.

When we are discussing compounds like acrylamide, you have to keep in mind that air fryers are not the only accessory that produces this. Deep frying of carbohydrates with the access of oil will produce 90% more acrylamide. Therefore, to keep a healthy life, you have to give away the habit of eating fried food.

Side effects due to BPA

The full meaning of BPA is bisphenol A. It is an industrial chemical compound that is used in the production of plastic. These plastics are often used to produce water bottles and other consumer goods. So, what is the problem with the plastic with BPA? If these plastics are exposed to an excess of heat, the BPA can break down from the plastic and leach into the food. BPA is responsible for complications in the human body such as high blood pressure, hormonal imbalance, physiological problem among the children, and so on. The possible solution to avoid these complications can be avoiding plastics that contain BPA. When purchasing an air fryer, try to choose one which is BPA free.

What’s the solution?

If you do not want to take any risk, then I’d suggest you choose an air fryer that uses BPA free material. Otherwise, you can also choose the one which has a ceramic coated basket that is free from toxicity. I am giving you two different suggestions in these two categories.

Yedi 12.7 QT BPA-Free Air Fryer

  • The capacity of this unit is large enough for a big family.
  • It is a multi-functional air fryer. Therefore, you can do a lot of things with it.
  • It comes with a lot of free accessories such as rotisserie basket, food pan, rod, drip pan, rotisserie cage and so on.
  • You can use this unit as a dehydrator as well.
  • The heating element of this unit is powered by a robust 1600W heater.

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Ninja 4 QT Air Fryer

  • It has a non-stick ceramic coated basket that is easy to clean.
  • If you are looking for a healthy option with a less capacity, then this 4 quart air fryer is perfect for you.
  • The lower temperature range of around 100 degrees Fahrenheit will allow you to dehydrate foods.
  • Ceramic coated plate, basket and free multi-layer racks are dishwasher safe.
  • Comes with a reheat function. Therefore, easy to reheat the leftovers without having knowledge about the temperature parameter.

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Final words

What is the conclusion from the above discussion? Are air fryers toxic? In one word, yes. But a rational mind will understand that these risks are associated with any other cooking methods as well. If we sum up all positives and negatives of an air fryer, the net result is by far a positive.
Thanks for the read. If you liked this article, you can share it with others. You can also share your thoughts regarding air fryers if you have any through the comment section. Happy cooking!

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