Celebrity Nutritionist Asks Swiggy And Zomato To Stop Using Plastic Containers, Zomato Responds

Zomato food delivery app: Luke Coutinho is a celebrity integrative lifestyle expert who recently wrote an open request to food delivery platforms Zomato and Swiggy to use safer materials for packaging foods as toxins from plastic may harm consumer's health.

Celebrity Nutritionist Asks Swiggy And Zomato To Stop Using Plastic Containers, Zomato Responds

Swiggy and Zomato: Luke Coutinho talks about safety of food packaging. (Photo: iStock)

When it comes to eating safe food from outside, many people ensure to order food from places they find hygienic where good quality ingredients are used. However, do we pay attention to the type of container in which our food is packaged? The quality of this container may impact our health, especially in the case of packaging hot foods. Recently, celebrity nutritionist Luke Coutinho wrote a post on his Instagram handle, requesting popular food delivery platforms Swiggy and Zomato, and their partnered restaurants, to use bio-degradable, non-plastic containers for packaging food. 

Taking to his Instagram handle, Coutinho wrote, "Swiggy, Zomato, Restaurants ...Please work with your partners to ensure food deliveries happen in biodegradable non-plastic containers ... many restaurants do this already, please make it uniform ...deliver food and health....hot food in plastic is making people sicker... You'll have the power to help make a change."

In the caption, he first explains how the food we order from outside may not be the healthiest. "People want their food on time so restaurants will cook your order on high heat and flame, destroying most ingredients, using more refined oil as a medium for fast cooking," he wrote in the caption.

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Further, explaining the health risks associated with packing hot foods in plastic containers, Coutinho said that from the pan/vessel, the food is transferred "straight into a plastic container which is immediately covered with the cover retaining immense heat and steam. This heat starts to break down the plastic into dangerous BPA and other toxins that wreak havoc with the human body and hormones, fertility, estrogens etc. We need to move to biodegradable, non-plastic ASAP for better health and a better earth."

Tagging companies and authorities who can make the change, he added, "@swiggyindia @zomato @fssai_safefood you'll have the power to make this change and be part of a healthier India, respectfully request you'll @swiggyindia @zomato and @fssai_safefood @fssai_group_of_india to work this out."

While many people including actor Dia Mirza and producer Guneet Monga liked and commented on the post respectively, there was no response from the delivery platforms for some time. However, Zomato recently acknowledged the request.

Zomato CEO Deepinder Goyal replied, "Thanks Luke for bringing this up. We will do what we can - will highlight restaurants which use food-safe packaging, so customers can make a more conscious choice."

To this response, Coutinho shared another post, writing, "Thank you @deepigoyal @zomato for acknowledging this and moving to action ....at the end of the day it's about coming together with a vision to build a healthier country... thank you and me and my team are happy to help anytime. I wonder when @swiggyindia will decide to wake up and at least acknowledge participation."

According to Medical News Today, exposure to heat causes plastic to break into smaller fragments called microplastics, which can migrate into food. The following are the potential dangers of microplastics:

1. Disrupting hormones

Research has shown that exposure to BPA plays a role in infertility in males and females alike, as well as in the development of polycystic ovary syndrome.

2. Increasing risk of chronic disease

Research shows that long-term exposure to endocrine-disrupting microplastics increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

3. Impairing immunity

Your gut health plays an important role in impacting your immunity. According to research, increased inflammation due to exposure to microplastics leads to poor gut health and weakened immunity.

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