How do microwaves heat/cook food?
Can microwaves give you cancer?
Microwaves heat food because water absorbs them very well, and
food is usually mostly made of water. The frequency of the microwaves
is designed to excite a vibration of water molecules, and
when something is hot that just means its molecules are vibrating
I do not think anybody has shown that microwaves will give you
cancer, but they will cook you just like they cook food. Under
very low power you may start to feel a little extra warmth in
your body. You do not want to say in that for too long!
In addition to cooking you the microwaves can cause damage to
the cornea that may eventually lead to cataracts. Never modify
your microwave oven in any way! If the door ever gets damaged
have it checked for microwave leaks before using it again.
gregory r bradburn
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Update: June 2012