Microwaved food and microorganisms

Nicholas Landau nlandau at eden.rutgers.edu
Fri May 21 10:02:48 EST 1999

"fp" <uhoh_1999 at hotmail.com> writes:

>is it possible that microwaving foods can actually make make food more
>palatable to some microorganisms?

Oh yeah, sure.  Just think about it.  For example, nuking a steak good
will probably kill most of the gram- organisms in the steak, but will
not kill gram+ endospores.  After the nuking is done, the gram+ bugs
will have the run of the steak, with no competition from less hardy

Note that microwaves all contain "cold spots," volumes within the chamber
of the oven in which little heating occurs.  For this reason, I don't
trust the microwave to completely cook anything containing raw eggs
or meat.  Plenty of people microwave their bacon, but not me!!!

You could also imagine a scenario in which microwave heating causes
the formation of compounds in the food which are usable by some
organism as a sources of energy and carbon.  Are there organisms
which prefer their food cooked?  I don't know.  Interesting question,
thouhg (well, I can think of one organism which likes its food
cooked, but I was referring to microbes).


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