United Nations urges countries to eliminate trans fats, reduce cardiac deaths

United Nations urges countries to eliminate trans fats, reduce cardiac deaths

The head of the United Nations health agency, Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, said that while wealthier nations have made strides in banning trans fats, "we need to extend those efforts globally".

Tran-fatty acids are industrially-produced trans-fats contained in hardened vegetable fats such as margarine and ghee. Trans fats increase the levels of a type of cholesterol linked to cardiovascular disease risk.

LDL is described as the bad cholesterol because it contributes to fatty buildups in arteries.

"Trans fat is an unnecessary toxic chemical that kills, and there's no reason people around the world should continue to be exposed", Tom Frieden, president and CEO of Resolve to Save Lives, an initiative of Vital Strategies, said in a statement this morning through the WHO.

The six strategies World Health Organization has proposed include a review of dietary sources of industrially-produced trans fats, the promotion of alternative healthier oils and fats, legislation and regulatory actions to curb trans fats, assessment of trans fats consumption in populations, creation of awareness about the risks of transfats and enforcement of policies and regulations.

Eliminating a big chunk of those deaths can be accomplished in an easier way: by banning trans fats (or trans fatty acids). The goal is for every country around the world to create legislation that stops manufacturers from using them altogether by 2023.

Heart and circulatory disease kills 160,000 people in the United Kingdom each year - with an estimated 2,000 to 3,000 people dying as a result of chronic conditions caused by consuming trans fat, said Prof Capewell. Meanwhile, the saturated fat-free substances that were created by the food industry by solidifying vegetable oils have now been proven to be highly problematic.

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Monday's statement also quotes former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg as touting his administration's successful campaign against trans fats.

Trans fats are primarily used in fried foods like fries and doughnuts as well as in baked goods such as cakes, pies, biscuits, pizza, and cookies.

The new REPLACE provides six strategic actions to ensure the prompt, complete, and sustained elimination of industrially-produced trans fats from the food supply and has a step-by-step strategy on how to do so by 2023. She said Nestle'; has eliminated these from 99.8% of fats and oils the company uses.

E nforce compliance of new and existing policies and regulations.

Denmark - the first country to impose mandatory restrictions on trans fats 15 years ago- has already seen a marked improvement of its citizens' health, with a dramatic drop in the number of cardiovascular disease-related deaths. Also, this is the first time the WHO, or any worldwide health organization, has proposed a ban on a dietary component.

"The bottom line here is that this the beginning of the end for industrially produced trans fats", said Tom Frieden, who heads the Resolve to Save Lives advocacy group, which has partnered with World Health Organization on the push to eliminate the products. Note: material may have been edited for length and content.

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