Artificial Trans Fat Is Unhealthy

Armen Hareyan's picture
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NYC Trans Fat Ban

Artificial trans fat is invisible and dangerous. While today we are protected from environmental hazards such as lead paint and asbestos, artificial trans fat remains a common hazard in our food. Trans fat increases the risk of heart disease, a leading cause of death among New Yorkers. There is no safe level of trans fat in our diets.

Based on the most conservative estimates, artificial trans fat kills at least 500 New Yorkers each year, more than the number killed each year in motor vehicle crashes.

Leading health organizations - including the American Heart Association, the National Academy of Sciences, the Institute of Medicine, the World Health Organization, and the U.S.Department of Health and Human Services - recommend that people strictly limit consumption of trans fat.

We can lower the risk of heart attacks by replacing artificial trans fat with healthier alternatives.

Restaurants are a major source of trans fat.

New Yorkers dine out a lot - more than a third of our daily calories come from food eaten away from home. On average, Americans consume almost 6 grams of trans fat each day. A single fast food meal can contain more than 10 grams of trans fat.

Restaurant customers have no practical way to know whether food they order contains artificial trans fat or not.

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To protect the health of New Yorkers and save lives, the Health Department is proposing a partial phase-out of artificial trans fat in restaurants.
The proposal allows restaurants 6 months to switch to oils, margarines, and shortening that have less than 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving. After 18 months, all food products must contain less than 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving. Packaged food items still in the manufacturer's original packaging when served to consumers will be exempt.

This proposal follows a one-year education campaign to help restaurants voluntarily reduce trans fat. Despite this effort, trans fat use remains widespread.

Trans fat is replaceable.

Artificial trans fat can be replaced with readily available heart-healthy oils (such as corn, canola, and soy), without changing the taste of foods.

Federal regulations have led to widespread reformulation of packaged foods, demonstrating the feasibility of removing trans fat from virtually all foods.

Many companies and restaurants have already made the switch.

Major food companies such as Kraft, Frito-Lay, Smuckers, and Tyson Foods already have trans fat-free product lines on supermarket shelves. For example, Oreo cookies, Goldfish crackers, and Fritos corn chips now have 0 grams of trans fat. Consumers still enjoy the taste, and the market for trans fat-free foods continues to grow.

Some nationwide restaurant chains have already reduced or eliminated artificial trans fat. For example, all Wendy's restaurants now fry with trans fat-free oil. Many New York City restaurants also have cut trans fat out of their oils and spreads - or never used it in the first place.

Food will taste the same - but your heart will know the difference.

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Comments

Good post, but there is something that I don’t believe in this post. Being fat is really sometimes a big issue. And it’s exactly not being fat, but how you take your weight. I am 54 year old. I gained lot of weight in past 10 years, and I got a distinguishable tummy. I was already having diabetes, but was bit careless as I was mostly concentrating in my business. This carelessness cost me heavily in future. As I was gaining the weight, at the same time, I was unable to balance my cholesterol level. It used to fluctuate heavily. But because of my carelessness, I wasn’t attentive to my health issues, as they were creating hindrance to my work. But at some extreme points, one day I felt some hard beatings on my heart. Suddenly, my heart used to pump vigorously. And there was no point happening that as I was not doing any stressful or physical work. It got worse with time. I was really frightened with the amount of beats it was pumping. It would have been almost double and that also quite hard. I felt dizzy, and suddenly caught a severe headache. And especially, I was having a great amount of pain on my left wrist. I was really helpless at that time. There were no people around, no phone, no one to be called. The only thing that I was able to do was to try to be calm and wait for any help. Somehow, I managed to survive that day. But from that day I was really conscious about the health. That moment was like an alarming signal for something very deadly to happen. I immediately consulted a physician in Los Angeles, where I was staying because of some business work. They suggested me to have some basic cardio test like ECG, etc. I got those test at Elite Health medical office in los angeles. It came to me as a shock that I need to have my advance test, as the cardiologist was doubting to have a blockage in one of the ventricle. Then they took my advance tests like stress test, Echo cardiogram and MRI. The result were that I was having a 60% blockage in one of the left ventricle, and was in the danger of having heart attack. I was astonished to hear that. Then I got the medications and operations after 3 months. Then I got enrolled in one of the wellness program from same elite health where they used to monitor my health issues round the clock. You can find some more info from www.elitehealth.com/executive_corporate_programs.php. Right now I am quite healthy, taking a lot amount of care regarding the diabetes and heart issues. My weight is also under my control now with the help of reality diet program where the doctors of elite health discuss my current health status and recommend steps for improving my health and dietary habits.