Why countries must eliminate trans-fatty acid from food

A Milky Way candy bar is deep-fried in oil free of trans fats at a food booth at the Indiana State Fair in Indianapolis

A Milky Way candy bar is deep-fried in oil free of trans fats at a food booth at the Indiana State Fair in Indianapolis

Several rich countries have already virtually eliminated trans fats by putting limits on the amounts allowed in packaged foods. Moreover, the foods that still contain trans fats in the USA and Europe tend to disproportionately affect the poor, because foods containing trans fats tend to be cheaper. To accomplish that, the organization is dispensing to its member nations a six-part strategic-action plan that includes taking steps to identify foods with partially hydrogenated oil in them, promoting their replacement, and taking legislative action-where necessary-to eliminate industrially produced trans fats.

World Health Organization laid out a six-point route for getting rid of trans fats that includes encouraging the replacement of trans fats with healthier vegetable oils and legislating to make it harder to use them. "The world is now embarking on the UN Decade of Action on Nutrition, using it as a driver for improved access to healthy food and nutrition". Still widely used in India, Russia, Africa, the Middle East, and elsewhere, partially hydrogenated oil is a potent contributor to cardiovascular disease and is exactly the kind of low-hanging fruit the WHO and governments around the world should be targeting in their public health efforts.

In the recent history of popular nutrition, trans fat has experienced perhaps the most meteoric rise and precipitous fall from grace of anything in our foods.

"The world is now setting its sights on today's leading killers - particularly heart disease, which kills more people than any other cause in nearly every country", said Frieden, president of Resolve to Save Lives, a New-York-based project of an organization called Vital Strategies.

When New York City banned restaurants from serving food with trans fats in 2006, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration adopted a requirement that same year for manufacturers to list trans fat content information on food labels.

AI-powered 'Nudge' respond reminders rolling out to the new Gmail
This new feature on the platform will help users autocomplete mails as they type the content in the compose window. Google has come up with yet another interesting feature known as smart replies or suggested replies .

Create awareness of the negative health impact of trans fats among policy makers, producers, suppliers, and the public. "A comprehensive approach to tobacco control allowed us to make more progress globally over the last decade than nearly anyone thought possible - now, a similar approach to trans fat can help us make that kind of progress against cardiovascular disease, another of the world's leading causes of preventable death".

Next month, June 18, 2018, marks the deadline set by FDA three years earlier for manufacturers to stop selling trans fatty foods.

"Trans-fat is an unnecessary toxic chemical that kills, and there's no reason people around the world should continue to be exposed", said Tom Frieden, a former head of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control who now leads the Resolve health initiative. In the decades that followed, food companies began incorporating partially hydrogenated oil into their products because it increased the shelf life of baked goods and facilitated an easier way to make buyer-friendly food textures. As part of the U.N.'s Sustainable Development Goals, the global community has committed to reducing premature death from noncommunicable diseases by one-third by 2030. "But studies gradually revealed that trans fats wreck cholesterol levels in the blood and drive up the risk of heart disease".

Heart attacks and strokes fell by more than 6 percent three years after some NY counties banned trans fats, researchers reported last year. In addition, there are indications that trans fat may increase inflammation and endothelial dysfunction.

Latest News