The American Heart Association recommends that we consume no more than two grams of trans fats per day (based on a 2000 calories/day diet). Thanks to a food labeling loop hole, foods can be labeled as trans fat free if they contain .5 grams of trans fats or less. While .5 grams doesn’t sound like a lot, it’s easy to rack up the trans fats to well over the two gram recommendation by eating too many servings of foods containing small amounts of this toxic oil.
How Do I Know if What I’m Eating Contains Trans Fats?
Read the ingredient label. If you see these two words together anywhere on the ingredient label, what you’re eating contains trans fats: partially hydrogenated.
Why Are Trans Fats Bad?
First and foremost, no amount of trans fat is good. It’s always bad and should always be avoided if possible, despite recommendations. Here are a few ways trans fats can harm your body:
- Trans fats lower HDLs (good cholesterol) and raise LDLs (bad cholesterol)
- According to The American Heart Association, trans fats have been associated with an increased risk of type-2 diabetes.
- Trans fats have been linked to free radical damage and excessive inflammation leading to digestive disorders and autoimmune diseases.
What Are You Eating That Contain Trans Fats?
Processed foods, or many foods that can sit on a shelf for long periods of time. Here are a few foods that have partially hydrogenated oils listed on their ingredient label.
Breakfast Foods, including:
- Kellogg’s Special K Chocolatey Delight
- Aunt Jemima Pancakes Mini
- Aunt Jemima Sausage Egg & Cheese Sandwiche Biscuit
- Kellogg’s Cocoa Krispies
- Pillsbury Toaster Strudels; Apple, Strawberry, Raspberry, Apple
- Pillsbury Rolls Cinnamon with Icing
- Kellogg’s Pop Tarts (strawberry, blueberry, raspberry, wild berry, chocolate fudge)
Lunch Foods/Snacks, including:
- Little Debbie Nutt Bars, Cosmic Brownies w/ Chocolate Chips and Honey Buns
- Teddy Grahams
- Chips Ahoy! Chunky Cookies
- Nabisco Ritz Crackers
- Skippy Super Chunk Peanut Butter
- Smucker’s Uncrustables Peanut Butter & Jelly (Grape & Strawberry)
- Snack Pack Chocolate Puddings
- Chex Snack Mix