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Question from Kate

I have metal allergies, including to nickel and chromium. I REALLY miss my electric kettle. There are electric kettles w foodgrade 304 stainless steel (which i understand contains nickel and chromium) bottom and lid and borosilicate glass sides and lip (eg ASCOT). Q: Does boiling water leach nickel and chromium from stainless steel?  I know acidic food would.

Lisa’s Answer


I wrote an article about leaching from stainless steel into water.  One study showed that stainless steel did not leach into water in any tested scenario.  Most studies test stainless steel using acid solutions so more research is needed to provide a more definitive assessment of leaching into water.  One factor that determines the amount of leaching is surface area and given that only part that comes in contact with the water is the bottom, leaching would be further limited.  If you did not have allergies, I would say it’s a good choice. But given that you have allergies to metal I suggest you check with your doctor. I know some people with metal allergies avoid all stainless steel.


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