Black Health

How the Trans-Fat Ban Has Improved Americans’ Health Levels


Strokes and heart attacks fell by over 6%, three years after some counties in New York banned trans-fats, recent research reveals.

A national ban on trans-fats begins in 2018 and the research by a team at Yale University predicts it may not only cut down deaths but also reduced stroke and non-fatal heart attacks as well.

Trans-fats, contained in oils used to fry fast food, to make crackers, cookies, and microwave popcorn, stay fresh longer compared to liquid fats.

Also, the chemical process used in making them solid like butter, makes them block arteries just like lard and butter do.

New York City was the first metropolitan area in America to restrict trans-fats in eateries, beginning from July 2007

Dr. Eric Brandt, and colleagues from Yale University’s School of Medicine, checked medical records to find out if it made any significant difference. And indeed, IT DID.

They compared counties which had banned, to counties where there were no bans.

“There was an additional 6.2% reduction in hospital admissions for stroke and heart attack (myocardial infarction) among populations living in [banned] counties vs. counties without trans-fatty acid barriers,” they noted.

“A nationwide trans-fat ban is a big win for the millions of individuals at risk for cardiovascular disease,” Dr. Eric stated.

The Food and Drug Administration has declared that partially hydrogenated oils are no more “generally recognized as safe” nor GRAS. This implies that after 2018, the food manufacturers would’ve to ask the FDA for the permission to add them in food products.

Trans-fats are made when liquid oils are chemically manipulated by a hydrogenation process. This makes them similar to lard or butter. But the process makes these fats unhealthier than saturated fats.

This debate confused the American residents since many fellows still believe butter is better for one’s health than margarine.

The truth is that butter does raise harmful cholesterol, but margarine made using polyunsaturated fats and unsaturated fats, DOES NOT.

The FDA estimates that about 80% of trans-fats are already eliminated from America’s foods.

The recommended good substitutes for saturated fats and partially hydrogenated fats are liquid oils such as canola oil, olive oil, and safflower oil.

To cut a long story short, consumption of trans-fatty acids clog arteries and thus make blood vessels inflamed and unhealthy.

Studies have found that when people consume even the smallest amounts, they still have a higher risk of heart disease, stroke, and sudden heart death. So be careful!

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