Artificial Trans Fats are Officially Banned

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This is a GOOD NEWS thing since trans fats have been linked to heart disease, diabetes, dementia and other metabolic diseases.

Everything from frozen pizza to coffee creamer to popcorn once contained, artificial trans fats — as of Monday — banished from U.S. restaurants and grocery stores.

Since 2015 Food-makers have had three years to phase out the ingredient. Nutrition researchers and public health advocates long ago found artificial trans fats, a modified form of vegetable oil, raised “bad” cholesterol and contributed to heart disease.

That prompted a wave of voluntary recipe changes at food companies, and trans fat consumption has plummeted over the past decade. But the June 18 deadline marks a final chapter in the U.S. fight against trans fats at a time when other countries are beginning to contemplate a similar change.

But in the early 1990s, research began turning up powerful links between artificial trans fats, cholesterol and heart disease. (Studies have not established a connection between those conditions and the natural trans fats that occur in some animal proteins.)

But the transformation hasn’t been easy. Some products, such as popcorn and pie crust, proved more stubborn to reinvention. Companies have also complained to FDA that they should be allowed to continue using trans fats in limited circumstances — such as to enhance product flavors or grease industrial baking pans.

This could slash the rates of preliminary death from heart disease, and reduce the incidence of diabetes, dementia and other metabolic diseases. Such declines have been observed in New York City, which banned the use of partially hydrogenated oils in restaurants in 2007, and in Denmark, which became the first country to ban trans fats in 2003.

Before and after their makeover, for instance,  a serving of Oreos contained 160 calories and seven grams of fat.

But today none of those calories come from partially hydrogenated oils — and that, experts say, is an accomplishment.

 

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