Trans Fats—Is Your Label Lying to You?

For this week’s ‘Renew You’ Challenge, I want to talk about the bad fats in your diet. Since trans fat amounts have appeared in Nutrition Facts panels on packaged foods, food processors have been trying to lower or eliminate trans fats from many foods. But did you know that if a food contains less than 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving, the label can still read 0g? So if it contains 0.49 grams of trans fat, you’d never know!

Hopefully that will be changing, as awareness of this little white lie is revealed. Currently, the daily consumption of over 1.11g of trans fats is considered excessive and may lead to long-term health effects. But with hidden trans fats in foods, it’s easy to see how this limit can be quickly surpassed.

How do you know if your food label is lying to you? The best way to determine if trans fats are still present in your foods is to call the food manufacturer. Doing this for everything you eat is unreasonable, however, so my advice is to steer clear of processed foods, especially those that you know used to contain trans fats. Try to consume mostly whole foods, which don’t contain trans fats, and are naturally high in nutrients and fiber.

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