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Trans Fats

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SCIENCE
November 8, 2013 | By Melissa Healy
Responding to the Food and Drug Administration's move to banish trans fats from the nation's diet, some public health advocates grumped Thursday that the agency was playing catch-up to a trend already well underway nationwide. Still, many of the same experts expressed hope that the FDA's move will open the way to a new era in the agency's regulation of food additives. By setting several new precedents, the FDA's decision on trans fats may bring some of our most beloved ingredients -- salt and sugar -- under new scrutiny by the agency, they predicted.
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BUSINESS
April 16, 2014 | By Tiffany Hsu
Artificial trans fat still lurks in our food, at least at the Joe's Crab Shack chain, according to a health watchdog group. The Center for Science in the Public Interest said Wednesday that the Houston-based seafood restaurant company uses a blend of partially hydrogenated margarine-butter blend containing dangerous levels of trans fat. Joe's Crab Shack, which was established in 1994, did not immediately respond to requests for comment....
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NEWS
July 16, 2012 | By Mary MacVean, Los Angeles Times
So, the government tells you that you shouldn't eat trans fats. What do you do? Seek out the nutrient content of everything you eat to make sure no trans fats pass your lips? Not likely, if you're like most people. Maybe not so different from the dreary statistics about how many of us pile up enough servings of vegetables and fruit every day. So New York City had another idea. Get rid of the trans fats in its restaurants and then people won't have to decide - at least for those meals.
SCIENCE
February 27, 2014 | By Melissa Healy
Aiming to give Americans the tools to make healthier dietary choices, the Food and Drug Administration has unveiled a revamped version of one of the nation's most recognized graphics -- the "Nutrition Facts" box that appears on the back or side of packaged foods and beverages. The proposed new information box increases the visibility of the "serving size," allowing consumers to see without mental gymnastics the size of a normal portion, as well as the nutrients it contains. It advertises the calorie content of a serving in larger typeface than any other information on the label, shouting a clear message over the cacophany of dietary advice: that too many of these are, first and foremost, the cause of obesity.
BUSINESS
November 7, 2013 | By David Pierson, Tiffany Hsu and Monte Morin
The long war on trans fats may be drawing to a close. The government proposed new rules Thursday that would all but ban the artery-clogging fats, a move that will force makers of margarine, frozen pizza and other processed foods to reformulate their products. Under the new rules, the Food and Drug Administration has declared that partially hydrogenated oils, the source of trans fats, are a food additive no longer "generally recognized as safe. " That would require companies wishing to use the ingredient to first seek approval from the FDA, which is unlikely to grant permission given the volume of research linking trans fats to heart disease.
SCIENCE
July 16, 2012 | By Mary MacVean, Los Angeles Times
New York City's pioneering ban on all but the smallest amounts of trans fats in restaurant food has led to a significant reduction in consumption, a change that should translate into better cardiovascular health in the nation's largest city, according to a new report. It also demonstrates that coffee shops, fast-food joints and other eateries can play a major role in improving the health of the public, the study authors said. Officials from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene conducted the study to assess whether the regulation that took effect in 2008 - which prohibits all restaurants from serving food prepared with partially hydrogenated vegetable oil or dishes that contain more than 0.5 gram of trans fat per serving - was making a difference for diners.
OPINION
July 24, 2008
Re "Fat chance," editorial, July 18 All fats have the same number of calories and, if eaten with abandon, will absolutely contribute to the ever-widening figures of Americans. However, palm oil and coconut oil, along with butter and olive oil, act quite differently from partially hydrogenated oils once they are inside our bodies. Trans fats, a manufactured byproduct of the partial hydrogenation of any vegetable oil, sabotage cell membranes, inhibiting cells from performing their intended functions.
OPINION
July 31, 2008
Re "State bans trans fats," July 26 With the state budget overdue and state employees about to descend the pay ladder to the federal minimum wage, it is gratifying to see great social experiments still being conducted in Sacramento. The Legislature has spent uncounted hours discussing a ban on Mylar balloons, has protected the rights of cats and dogs to inherit large sums of cash and is now providing cooking classes to restaurateurs. By all means, let's make sure we have disappointed children, millions of dollars tied up awaiting new shipments of Alpo, and Spago opening new cafes in South L.A. offering only steamed fresh vegetables.
BUSINESS
April 16, 2014 | By Tiffany Hsu
Artificial trans fat still lurks in our food, at least at the Joe's Crab Shack chain, according to a health watchdog group. The Center for Science in the Public Interest said Wednesday that the Houston-based seafood restaurant company uses a blend of partially hydrogenated margarine-butter blend containing dangerous levels of trans fat. Joe's Crab Shack, which was established in 1994, did not immediately respond to requests for comment....
BUSINESS
January 25, 2007 | David Colker, Times Staff Writer
What would Betty Crocker do? Crisco, the mainstay of cookie-baking moms for decades, is chucking its original formula to eliminate its much-maligned trans fats. The decision, announced Wednesday by its maker, J.M. Smucker Co., shows how times have changed. When it debuted in 1911, the queen of trans fat products was hailed as a healthful alternative to butter and lard.
BUSINESS
January 7, 2014 | By David Pierson
For generations, butter got a bad rap. It was thought to be cloying, fattening, dangerous for your arteries, and it took a creaming from oil-based substitutes like margarine. Now with the trans fats in those alternatives under fire, everyone from iron chefs to home cooks is reexamining butter's place on the refrigerator shelf. The yellow spread served at Joan Hemphill's Seal Beach home tastes like butter - because it is butter. "I use way too much," Hemphill concedes.
BUSINESS
January 7, 2014 | By David Pierson
It turns out America's health fixation has been a boon for butter. Consumption of the creamy spread hit a 40-year high in the U.S. in 2012 as more Americans turned to natural foods and rejected products heavy in trans fats like margarine. “Consumers are changing their perception of food and looking for healthier alternatives. They're moving away from highly processed foods and artificial ingredients,” Anuja Miner, executive director of the American Butter Institute, said in a phone interview Tuesday.
SCIENCE
November 8, 2013 | By Melissa Healy
Responding to the Food and Drug Administration's move to banish trans fats from the nation's diet, some public health advocates grumped Thursday that the agency was playing catch-up to a trend already well underway nationwide. Still, many of the same experts expressed hope that the FDA's move will open the way to a new era in the agency's regulation of food additives. By setting several new precedents, the FDA's decision on trans fats may bring some of our most beloved ingredients -- salt and sugar -- under new scrutiny by the agency, they predicted.
BUSINESS
November 7, 2013 | By David Pierson, Tiffany Hsu and Monte Morin
The long war on trans fats may be drawing to a close. The government proposed new rules Thursday that would all but ban the artery-clogging fats, a move that will force makers of margarine, frozen pizza and other processed foods to reformulate their products. Under the new rules, the Food and Drug Administration has declared that partially hydrogenated oils, the source of trans fats, are a food additive no longer "generally recognized as safe. " That would require companies wishing to use the ingredient to first seek approval from the FDA, which is unlikely to grant permission given the volume of research linking trans fats to heart disease.
BUSINESS
July 2, 2013 | By Tiffany Hsu, This post has been updated. Please see below for details
Food-focused watchdog group Center for Science in the Public Interest has its hooks in Long John Silver's, accusing the seafood chain of serving the least healthful meal in the country. The advocacy group said it ran laboratory tests on the chain's Big Catch meal, including batter-fried haddock and side dishes such as hush puppies and onion rings. The results showed 33 grams of trans fat, according to the group -- or more than two weeks' worth of the two-grams-a-day allotment recommended by the American Heart Assn.
NEWS
April 11, 2013 | By Alexandra Le Tellier
Soda bans seem like a good idea in theory. Soda has no nutritional value whatsoever. Worse, it's a sugar bomb. Given the mounting obesity problem in this country, some might think soda bans are an admiral effort to curb our collective waistline, an initiative absolutely worth trying. In practice, however, research suggests that soda bans would backfire. “New research shows that prompting beverage makers to sell sodas in smaller packages and bundle them as a single unit actually encourages consumers to buy more soda -- and gulp down more calories -- than they would have consumed without the ban,” writes Melissa Healy in The Times' Science section.
BUSINESS
January 7, 2014 | By David Pierson
For generations, butter got a bad rap. It was thought to be cloying, fattening, dangerous for your arteries, and it took a creaming from oil-based substitutes like margarine. Now with the trans fats in those alternatives under fire, everyone from iron chefs to home cooks is reexamining butter's place on the refrigerator shelf. The yellow spread served at Joan Hemphill's Seal Beach home tastes like butter - because it is butter. "I use way too much," Hemphill concedes.
BUSINESS
December 12, 2006 | From Bloomberg News
Denny's Corp., a chain of more than 1,500 family restaurants worldwide, said it planned to eliminate trans fats from its menu items as early as the first half of 2007. The plan includes changing frying oil and margarine used in food preparation, and working with food manufacturers, the Spartanburg, S.C.-based company said. Restaurants including Taco Bell Corp. and KFC, both units of Yum Brands Inc., have said they would eliminate trans fats. Burger King Holdings Inc.
NATIONAL
September 18, 2012 | By Tina Susman, Los Angeles Times
NEW YORK - Scott Elyanow had clung to the red, long-sleeved sweatshirt with the words "Marblehead High School" for 20 years. It had softened with age, like the memory of the long-ago love who had given it to him. But Elyanow was nearing 40, and what he had gained in years and wisdom he hadn't gained in living space - his apartment measures 275 square feet, including the bathroom, kitchen and an entryway with overhead clearance of 5 feet, 7...
SCIENCE
July 16, 2012 | By Mary MacVean, Los Angeles Times
New York City's pioneering ban on all but the smallest amounts of trans fats in restaurant food has led to a significant reduction in consumption, a change that should translate into better cardiovascular health in the nation's largest city, according to a new report. It also demonstrates that coffee shops, fast-food joints and other eateries can play a major role in improving the health of the public, the study authors said. Officials from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene conducted the study to assess whether the regulation that took effect in 2008 - which prohibits all restaurants from serving food prepared with partially hydrogenated vegetable oil or dishes that contain more than 0.5 gram of trans fat per serving - was making a difference for diners.
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