So Long Trans Fats, Hello Nanny State!

Trans Fats Child

U.S. regulators have taken steps to ban the use of trans fats, citing health concerns. Translation: Americans are way too fat.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) proposed measures that would all but eliminate artificial trans fats, the artery-clogging oils that cause heart disease and obesity.

“Partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs), the primary dietary source of artificial trans fat in processed foods, are not ‘generally recognized as safe’ for use in food,” the Food and Drug Administration said in a statement.

After examining the scientific evidence, the FDA concluded that the use of trans fats was a threat to public health and that a ban, which would require the food industry to gradually phase out trans fats, could prevent 7,000 deaths and 20,000 heart attacks in the U.S. each year.

The regulatory agency opened a 60-day comment period before the move can become final – so if you love trans fats, you have 60 days to give your input. If the proposal does turn into a full-out ban after the 60 day period, PHOs would be considered food additives and could not be used in food unless regulators authorized it.

Public health campaigns warning Americans about the dangers of trans fats and the 2006 requirement that trans fat amounts to be listed on foods have already prompted many food companies to begin phasing out the heart-clogging oils, which are typically used as a way to improve the shelf life or flavour of foods. Still, trans fats are commonly found in many processed foods including microwave popcorn, desserts, frozen pizzas, margarine and in restaurants that use the oils for frying.

If you want to get your fill of trans fat before the ban comes into play – there’s only one place to go: Long John Silvers. The fast food chain’s Big Catch fried fish meal comes with 33 grams of transfat – all for the low price of $4.99. The only catch? It might kill you.

Big Catch

Via: The New York Times

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