Friday, February 4, 2011


Foods can claim to be trans-fat-free if they have less than .5 grams. Instead, check ingredients for shortening or hydrogenated oil.
Think your diet is trans-fat-free? You might be surprised. Foods that contain less than half a gram of trans fat per serving are allowed to claim they have zero grams of the heart-damaging fat.

Current dietary guidelines recommend consuming no more than 1.11 grams of trans fat per day. So eating just a few servings of supposedly trans-fat-free products could inadvertently put consumers over that limit. Unlike other fats, trans fat (also known as trans fatty acid) wallops cholesterol levels in two ways — it raises “bad” LDL and lowers “good” HDL, both of which can increase the risk of heart disease.

To figure out if a food contains trans fat, scan the ingredients. If you see the words “hydrogenated,” “partially hydrogenated,” or “shortening,” it most likely contains some amount of trans fat. Fully or completely hydrogenated oil does not contain trans fat. If the label simply says “hydrogenated,” it’s safer to stay away.

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