World Health Organization urges end to use of trans fats in food

WHO calls for the elimination of trans fats in all food by 2023

WHO calls for the elimination of trans fats in all food by 2023

"Elimination of industrially-produced trans fats from the global food supply has been identified as one of the priority targets of WHO's strategic plan, the draft 13th General Programme of Work (GPW13) which will guide the work of World Health Organization in 2019 - 2023. More than 20 nations have restricted the use of trans fats in the last 15 years, and major food manufacturers have practically eliminated the use of trans fats in their foods: Nestle has eliminated trans fats from 99.8% of the oils they use; members of the International Food and Beverage Alliance, which include Kellogg, General Mills, and McDonald's, have eliminated trans fats from 98.8% of their global product portfolios; and Mondelez International, the maker of Oreos, is on track to eliminate all partially hydrogenated oils from its products by the end of the year.

- Assess and monitor trans fats content in the food supply and changes in trans fat consumption in the population. Beyond the United States, countries like Canada and Denmark have taken action against the use of trans fats, but lawmakers and regulators in many other places haven't - because they are either unaware of the health risks or they are reluctant to take on the food industry. Still widely used in India, Russia, Africa, the Middle East, and elsewhere, partially hydrogenated oil is a potent contributor to cardiovascular disease and is exactly the kind of low-hanging fruit the WHO and governments around the world should be targeting in their public health efforts.

The WHO recommends that no more than 1 percent of a person's calories come from trans fats.

Trans fats occur naturally in meat and dairy products. Now, the World Health Organization (WHO) wants to completely eliminate them from our diets and they've released a detailed, step-by-step plan for doing so.

"Trans fats appear in highly processed foods".

REPLACE is the product of an agency with 7,000 people working in offices in 150 countries and, as such, is not one of those acronyms whose meaning is immediately apparent like, say, LOL. That's when partially hydrogenated oil began to tumble out of favor.

"Industrially produced trans fats are contained in hardened vegetable fats, such as margarine and ghee, and are often present in snack food, baked foods, and fried foods".

In the USA, the first trans fatty food to hit the market was Crisco shortening, which went on sale in 1911. "Trans fatty foods became increasingly popular beginning in the 1950s, partly because experts at the time thought they were healthier than cooking with butter or lard", writes the Associated Press' Mike Stobbe for the Washington Post. They used them in doughnuts, cookies and deep-fried foods.

Many manufacturers cut back, and studies showed trans fat levels in the blood of middle-aged USA adults fell by almost 60 percent by the end of the decade. FDA officials have not said how much progress has been made or how they will enforce their rule against food makers that don't comply.

Originally popularized after the negative impacts of saturated fatty acids were discovered, trans fats have fallen out of favor as their own health effects have gained prominence.

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