World Health Organization calls for removal of trans fat in food supply by 2023

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There are some naturally occurring trans fats in some foods made from animals-like dairy and meat-but the artificial trans fats are the ones the World Health Organization is calling for a ban on. The same year the FDA required manufacturers to list trans fat content information on food labels.

Food makers liked artificial trans fats because they prolong product shelf life and enhance flavor.

The intake of TFA results in more than 500,000 deaths from cardiovascular disease, annually. They are also in fried foods because oils with trans fats can be used many times in commercial fryers, the American Heart Association said.

Pixabay/davidzThe World Health Organization called for the elimination of artificial trans fats from all foods, and has outlined a step by step plan to achieve this goal by 2023, about five years from now. But healthier alternatives, which are generally more expensive, can be used that would not affect taste or cost of food.

Dr Ravi Shankar, senior gastroenterologist, said, "Trans fats are mainly found in fast foods and if they are consumed in higher quantities, they lead to premature death and accumulation of fats in one's blood vessels which can even lead to cerebral palsy. While we can not estimate a percentage of products on store shelves that will be free of PHOs on June 19, 2018, we are confident that over the past three years, manufacturers have taken appropriate steps to reformulate products if and as necessary", an FDA spokesperson told Newsweek.

Action is needed in low- and middle-income countries, where controls of use of industrially produced trans fats are often weaker, to ensure that the benefits are felt equally around the world, Ghebreyesus said.

As per sources, numerous developed nations have already removed trans-fats from the food supply, imposing legal restrictions on packaged food.

"A comprehensive approach to tobacco control allowed us to make more progress globally over the last decade than nearly anyone thought possible", he said, "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".

Trans fats increase the levels of LDL-cholesterol, a well-accepted biomarker for cardiovascular disease risk, and decreases levels of HDL-cholesterol, which carry away cholesterol from arteries and transport it to the liver, that secretes it into the bile. Partially hydrogenated oils were first introduced into the food supply in the early 20th century as a replacement for butter. Diets high in trans fat increase heart disease risk by 21 per cent and deaths by 28 per cent.

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