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Can you keep food in an open tin or not?

  1. You may have learned it earlier: Keeping food in an open tin is dangerous and unhealthy. It is often also indicated on labels that you should always keep leftovers of the content in another container. Most people therefore obediently do not put open cans in the refrigerator.

  1. But where does this rule come from? How dangerous is it to just leave that leftover tomato paste or chickpeas in the can? We explain below what the danger is â € “and why it is sometimes not too bad.

Tin in your food

  1. The fact that keeping food in an open tin is not recommended was originally to prevent the so-called â € can poisoningâ € ™. This problem is sometimes caused by the tin that is incorporated in the metal of the can. This can be quite a bit of tin, up to 150 mcg per gram of metal.

  1. When the can is opened, oxygen gets to the inside. This can lead to accelerated oxidation, where some of the tin ends up in the food. Certainly after a few days in the refrigerator, this can add up considerably. This applies especially to acidic products, such as tomato sauce and fruit in juice. After a few days you can even see a dark circle forming where the tin is absorbed.

Effects of tin

  1. The question is of course: how bad is it if tin gets into your food? Fortunately, that is not so bad. Of all the heavy metals that can get into your body, tin is the least harmful. For example, it will not quickly cause damage to the nervous system. No tolerable daily intake (TDI) has therefore been established.

  1. That does not mean, however, that a high intake of tin cannot cause problems. The main disadvantage is that it can irritate your stomach. Children are even more likely to suffer from this due to their low weight. It is therefore important to avoid eye poisoning as much as possible.

Painted or unpainted?

  1. Fortunately, the food industry came up with this itself years ago. Today, most tins in the Netherlands are painted. This means that a thin layer of plastic has been applied over the metal on the inside. The tin can therefore not simply be absorbed by the food.

  1. Still, that's no guarantee that everything will go well. In an open tin, the paint is often damaged by the sharp edge of the top. That dark circle can still form at the top of the can. Knives and forks can also scratch the plastic where tin can leak through.

Hygiene from an open can

  1. In addition, opened tins are not always the most hygienic option. The air in the refrigerator can contain quite a few microbes from other foods. Even with the low temperature, they can lead to spoilage if they get into the can.

  1. Finally, keeping your food in an open tin is also not very good for the quality. The other food in the refrigerator can affect the taste, and the can itself will also give a metallic undertone after a few days.

Keep food in an open tin

  1. In short, it is not always necessary to move food to another container in an opened tin. If you forget it once, you really won't get sick of it right away. At the most, it will make your food less tasty and you will get a small amount of tin with it.

  1. Keeping food in an open tin is also not a very good habit. It is therefore wise to simply follow the directions on the labels and transfer leftovers to a container!

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