Trans Fatty Acids: What You Should Know
Lately, a type of unsaturated fat, called trans fatty acids or trans fats have become the central issue with regards to food, especially in fast food outlets in New York. Even the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is trying to ban some margarines, butters and other cookie products that contain trans fats. It is believed that trans fats can raise cholesterol levels, cause arteriosclerosis and coronary heart disease (CHD) and even dementia. This issue poses a big problem for the sales of margarine especially in the US.
The big problem of trans fats is believed to be known sometime in the late 2003. When the news spread around, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DOHMH) regulated the use of margarine and cooking oil that includes trans fats especially in fast food chains.
On January, 2006, the FDA issued a regulation requiring manufacturers to list trans fatty acid contents of the food. Americans are now assuming that they consume less trans fats from their daily diets. However, trans fat is still included in many products such as milk, beef, margarine, and shortening.
HEALTH RISKS AND OTHER EFFECTS
In Japan, margarine is believed to be good for the body. We have been consuming margarines for over 60 years now and our life span is getting longer and longer. What's wrong with it? Yes, we understand that trans fats produce health problems, but potato chips are delicious. I like potato chips very much. How could we stop eating potato chips? If we say that when oils are heated to 90 – 180°C, trans fats will be produced whether it's from animals or vegetables, then, what can we do?
To make you silent, here's the solution. Yes, it is true that trans fats can raise cholesterol levels. Even if you don't eat fried foods, cookies, margarine, or bread, your liver will produce cholesterol anyway. We believe that animal oil produces cholesterol and vegetable oil reduces cholesterol. But now we understand that both oils are dangerous when they are heated. Therefore, just eat anything as they were, but not too much. Anything that's eaten too much can be harmful.
As a matter of fact, vitamin A is good for eyesight, but when taken too much, you might become blind. Vitamin C was said to be good in preventing cancer diseases, but when taken too much, it becomes the cause of cancer. And yes, who doctors said so? We really do not know what to believe.