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WHO Launches Campaign to Eliminate Trans Fats in Food By 2023

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As you may have heard, the World Health Organization (WHO) has launched a campaign to eliminate trans fat from the global food supply by 2023. The step-by-step plan called REPLACE will show countries how to get rid of this harmful ingredient that the agency links to half a million deaths per year from cardiovascular disease.

Trans fats are formed through the hydrogenation of vegetable oils. They are used in snack foods, baked goods and fried foods, such as French fries. The fats are also present in shortening, stick margarine, premade frostings and coffee creamer.

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FDA Ban on Trans Fat is Now Effective

Awareness of the adverse health effects associated with trans fat emerged in the 1990s, when research linked it to high LDL cholesterol levels and an increased risk of type 2 diabetes, heart attacks and strokes. In response to the accumulating evidence, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ordered the food industry to disclose the quantity of trans fat on labels in 2006.

In 2015, the FDA issued a ruling that trans fat was no longer “generally recognized as safe.” Officials gave the industry three years to remove the ingredient from processed food or to request a specific use of partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs). June 18, 2018 marked the end of the three-year period, and the ban became effective.

REPLACE Could Save Millions of Lives

REPLACE consists of six strategies for achieving its goal. They involve identifying the dietary sources of trans fats, replacing the fats with healthier ingredients, enacting legislation to remove the fats from food, assessing changes, promoting awareness and enforcing policy compliance.

“Implementing the six strategic actions in the REPLACE package will help achieve the elimination of trans fat, and represent a major victory in the global fight against cardiovascular disease,” said Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus director-general of the WHO.

The REPLACE initiative is the first time WHO calls for the removal of a major lifestyle factor responsible for non-communicable diseases, added Ghebreyesus. “Non-communicable diseases are the world’s leading cause of death. WHO is committed to supporting countries to reduce the burden of non-communicable diseases.”

According to WHO, non-communicable disease, also called chronic disease, stems from behavioral factors, such as diet, as well as environmental, physiological and genetic factors. Cardiovascular disease, which remains the #1 killer of Americans, is linked to consumption of trans fats, is a prime example of how lifestyle affects health.

While other countries, including England, Canada and Denmark, have also banned trans fats, they are still widely used in developing countries. Therefore, the REPLACE initiative could potentially save 10 million lives.

Denmark illustrates how REPLACE could protect health. The country led the world community in removing trans fats from food, imposing a limitation on the ingredient in 2004. After this policy was implemented, the trans fat content in food sharply decreased and deaths from cardiovascular disease dropped faster than in other developed countries, stated the WHO report.

Sources:

https://www.cnn.com/2018/05/14/health/trans-fats-who-2023-intl-bn/index.html

https://www.usnews.com/news/health-care-news/articles/2018-05-14/who-calls-for-elimination-of-trans-fats-globally-by-2023

https://www.newswise.com/articles/expert:-ban-on-trans-fat-takes-effect-in-us,-but-global-eradication-could-be-tough


Mary West is a natural health enthusiast, as she believes this area can profoundly enhance wellness. She is the creator of a natural healing website where she focuses on solutions to health problems that work without side effects. You can visit her site and learn more at http://www.alternativemedicinetruth.com. Ms. West is also the author of Fight Cancer Through Powerful Natural Strategies.


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