Trans fats may give foods a buttery taste and flakey texture, but they pack a powerful punch of negative health effects.
McDonald’s Australia has announced a move to a new cooking oil to cut ‘trans fats’. It maintains its new oil—a blend of canola and high oleic sunflower oil—being used in all 740 restaurants across the country is ‘virtually free’ of trans fatty acids.
Hospitality Magazine reports that the change will remove more than 415 tonnes of trans fat from the Australian food supply.
The oil was developed in consultation with dietitians at The Food Group Australia and Goodman Fielder Consumer Foods and meets guidelines for healthier oils. The new oil is cholesterol free and has 85 per cent less trans fats compared to the previous canola oil blend. McDonald’s says the oil is not hardened or partially hydrogenated and is high in monounsaturated fat which is regarded as a ‘good fat’.
A National Collaboration on Trans Fats
The Government has recently announced it aims to tackle obesity and ill health by reducing the presence of trans fats in food sold in Australia. Consideration is also being given to allow a label saying a food is “low in trans fatty acids and saturated fat, which can reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease”.
WHY are trans fats used in foods?
Good & bad fats
Some fats are inherently more harmful to our health than others.
Saturated fats raise our risk of heart attacks and strokes by increasing blood cholesterol levels. They are found in:
Trans fats are even more potent than saturated fats in raising bad blood cholesterol. These man-made fats are produced by heating liquid vegetable oils in the presence of hydrogen (a process known as hydrogenation).They are found in:
Unsaturated fats, on the other hand, are ‘good’ fats and can actually help unclog blood vessels blocked by cholesterol. Unsaturated fats include the mono-unsaturates found in:
Most Western diets are lower in omega-3 than omega-6, so focusing on boosting omega-3 fats is especially important.
What do trans fats do ? Like saturated fats from animal sources, trans fats increase LDL, or ‘bad’ cholesterol and triglycerides which can lead to:
AND to make matters worse…
We need to watch out for trans fats in baked items such as biscuits, chips, margarine, shortening, peanut butter, pancake mixes and fried foods. Dr John Tickell says we need to eat foods WHI (without human intervention)!
Are you watching labels more and changing your eating habits?