Trans Fats or Hydrogenated Fats 🧈🍦

You have probably heard that trans fats are the worst type of fat. In fact, the UK Government has urged food companies to cut down on the levels of trans fats in products, but an outright ban has yet to be enforced. Meaning that a number of foods still contain them.

Here is some information on what they are, why they are bad and where they are found 🤓

👀 But what are they?
Trans fatty acids, more commonly called trans fats or hydrogenated fats, are made by heating liquid vegetable oils in the presence of hydrogen gas and a catalyst, a process called hydrogenation. This changes the chemical property of the oils allowing them to solidify at room temperature allowing for longer shelf life and stabilising the flavour of the foods they are added to. Trans fats are also known as partially hydrogenated oils/fats or shortening and are often found listed among the emulsifiers in food as mono and diglycerides of fatty acids.

❌ Why are they bad for us?
Hydrogenated fats have been linked to the promotion of heart disease, strokes, type 2 diabetes, certain cancers and obesity. This is because they are pro-inflammatory in the body, reducing levels of good cholesterol (HDL) and increasing the bad (LDL).

🛒 Which foods contain trans fats?
Foods which may contain trans fats are typically sweet, carbohydrate-based foods or those with relatively short shelf lives.

Trans fats have typically been present in the following foods:

🎂 Cakes
🍩 Doughnuts
🥐 Pastries
🍦 Ice cream
🍞 Bread
🥡 Fast food

🥩🧀 Animal foods, such as red meats and dairy, have small amounts of trans fats. But most trans fats come from processed foods.

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