The Truth About Trans Fats
Sep. 15, 2015
There’s been a lot of information in the media lately regarding trans fats. The Food and Drug Administration has even stated that manufacturers will no longer be able to add trans fats to their food by 2018. But is something so drastic really necessary? The following information details exactly what trans fats are, how they affect our health and if they’re really as bad as we’re being led to believe.
WHAT ARE TRANS FATS?
Trans fats, which are also called trans-fatty acids, are considered by some doctors to be the worst type of fat to eat. According to the Mayo Clinic, trans fats not only raises your bad cholesterol (LDL), but they actually lower your good cholesterol (HDL). The American Heart Association states that there are generally two different types of trans fats in the food we eat. There are those that occur naturally and are found in some meat and milk, and those that are artificial and easily found in processed foods.
These artificial fats are known as partially hydrogenated oils. Foods such as processed biscuits, chips, pie crusts, cakes and microwave popcorn are high in trans fats. Foods that require deep frying often have high levels of trans fats as well.
Learning about trans fats and how they affect our bodies is an integral part of several health-related careers, including nursing. Concorde Career College provides several allied health and nursing programs that teach students the facts about healthy living and eating right.
HOW DO TRANS FATS AFFECT OUR HEALTH?
According to Popular Science, manufacturers use trans fats because they are cheap and increase a food’s shelf life. They are, however, harder for the body to break down. Because of the chemical structure in trans fats they are difficult for your body to metabolize. Since they can increase bad cholesterol, this can lead to heart disease. Trans fats have also been associated with diabetes and cardiovascular diseases.
SHOULD WE TOTALLY ELIMINATE TRANS FATS?
There are three types of fats that we consume: unsaturated fats, saturated fats and trans fats. Unsaturated fats are considered healthy and our bodies need a certain amount of these types of fat. Saturated fats are considered unhealthy, but not to the extent of trans fats. Like many things we eat, if trans fats are eaten in very limited amounts they are probably not a health concern for most people.
If your diet is built of foods mainly high in trans fat, you may run a higher risk of heart problems, stroke and diabetes. The Food and Drug Administration is paying attention; it has determined that these types of fats should be phased out of our food sources completely.
Learn the skills that can help you become an advocate for healthy living. Contact Concorde Career College and we’ll get you started on the right career today.