The CDC released a study showing that the level of trans-fatty acids in the blood of white adults has decreased 58% between the years 2000 and 2009. The CDC’s National Biomonitoring Program measures the presence of 450 different chemicals in human blood. Trans-Fat is just one of them.
This is a good! Trans-fats are the worst type of fats for human health, are totally unnecessary and can lead to heart disease.
This news also demonstrates that Public Health Measures Work! Trans-fatty acids are a type of artificial fat that is produced when oils are partially hydrogenated. Partially hydrogenated oil has been very popular as a means to create snacks and foods that don’t ooze oils at room temperature. But in 2006, companies were required by the FDA to start labeling their trans-fat content. As a result, many eliminated or drastically reduced their use of partially hydrogenated oils.
“The 58 percent decline shows substantial progress that should help lower the risk of cardiovascular disease in adults,” said Christopher Portier, Ph.D., director of CDC′s National Center for Environmental Health. “Findings from the CDC study demonstrate the effectiveness of these efforts in reducing blood TFAs and highlight that further reductions in the levels of trans fats must remain an important public health goal.”
Before we all get excited, there is still work to be done. Not only is trans-fat still prevalent in many foods, a silly FDA loophole allows products with a small amount to label it as zero.
What to do at the supermarket:
Any product that contains “partially hydrogenated” oils contains trans-fats. Steer clear.
(h/t to Marler Clark’s Food Safety News)