United Nations agency calls for all countries to rid foods of trans fat

  • United Nations agency calls for all countries to rid foods of trans fat

United Nations agency calls for all countries to rid foods of trans fat

"Trans-fats are a toxic chemical that kills, and there is no need for people around the world to continue exposing themselves to them", said Tom Frieden, president of the "Resolved to Save Lives" association, who works directly with WHO in their plans against trans-fats.

Israeli food manufacturers and importers will not have to make major changes to comply with the directive of the World Health Organization (WHO) to eliminate deadly trans-fatty acids in all foods by 2023. Nevertheless, the country has the opportunity to address its health and economics by supporting more locally produced oils.

Unveiling the campaign in Geneva, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus urged governments to act.

Implementing the WHO's strategy for replacing trans fats, including promoting healthier alternatives and legislating against the harmful ingredients, would remove them from the food chain and score a major victory against heart disease, he said. The same year the FDA required manufacturers to list trans fat content information on food labels.

Those fats are often found in common fried foods, fast food and snacks, and sometimes in desserts as well, according to the WHO. But healthier alternatives that will not affect taste or cost of food can be used, the World Health Organization said.

The United States Food and Drug Administration set a three-year compliance period in July of 2015 that said companies either had to make their products without partially hydrogenated oils or petition to be allowed to use them.

The agency estimates that every year trans-fat intake leads to more than 500,000 deaths from cardiovascular disease.

Create awareness of the negative impact of trans-fats on different audiences: decision makers, food producers, industrial suppliers, and the general public.

Eliminating these fats is the "key to protecting health and saving lives", it said, in a statement.

Switzerland, Britain, Canada, and the U.S. have all already moved to ban trans fats.

Artificial trans fats, as trans fatty acids are commonly referred to, are usually made from hydrogenated vegetable oil and similar fats.

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. "In South Asian countries, they have very, very high risk of heart disease and high intakes of trans fats", Dr. Francesco Branca, director of the Nutrition for Health Department at the WHO, emphasized in his statement.