Does aluminum foil cause cancer?

October 10, 2023 | 03:38 pm PT
Many said wrapping food with aluminum foil may cause cancer, as the metal leaches into the food. Is this true? (Hong, 37, Hanoi)


The causal relationship between using aluminum foil and cancer has not been backed by any scientific proof.

Aluminum foil is especially useful in the kitchen thanks to its light and thin qualities, which makes it a convenient material to wrap or cover food for cooking or preserving purposes. Using aluminum foil in air-fryers helps cleaning more easily as well.

In general, it is safe to use aluminum, or things that are made of aluminum, when cooking as long as you use it correctly.

Aluminum foil is useful in the kitchen. Photo illustration by Freepik

Aluminum foil is useful in the kitchen. Photo illustration by Freepik

For example, we have been using aluminum pots to cook for ages, as aluminum has a high thermal conductivity which saves cooking time and makes the dishes less oily and more flavorful. Research has also shown the benefits of aluminum foil in preserving foods.

In conclusion, using aluminum foil is safe and does not cause cancer.

There are only a few things to keep in mind while using aluminum foil. When using it in the air-fryer, add a thin layer of butter or oil to avoid foods sticking to the foil.

Do not use aluminum foil in microwaves, as the foil may heat up too quickly and ignite because of the electric fields. Consequences may range from fires to explosions.

Dr. Nguyen Duy Thinh

Hanoi University of Science and Technology’s Institute of Food Technology and Biotechnology

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