There are many disagreements about nutrition.
But one of the few things that people really agree with is the unhealthy nature of trans fat.
Fortunately, the consumption of these terrible fats has plummeted in recent decades.
But we still eat it too much, which has different adverse health effects.
This article gives a detailed look at trans fat: what they are, why they harm you and how to avoid them.
What is trans fat?
Trans fat, or trans-fatty acid, is a form of unsaturated fat.
Unlike saturated fats without double bonds, unsaturated fats have at least one double bond in their chemical structure.
This link may be in the "cis" or "trans," configuration regarding the position of hydrogen atoms around the double bond.
Basically, "cis" means "same side," this is the most common structure. However, trans fat has hydrogen atoms opposite This may cause a problem.
In fact, "trans" is Latin for "the opposite side," - hence the name fat metabolism.
This chemical structure is thought to cause many health problems.
Summary: Trans fats are unsaturated fats with a specific chemical structure with hydrogen atoms on the opposite side of the double bond.
Natural trans fat with artificial trans fat
Trans fat nature is part of the human diet since we started eating meat and dairy products from (like cattle, sheep and goats).
Also known as ruminant trans fat, they are completely natural, formed when bacteria in the stomach digest grass.
Trans fat usually accounts for 2-5% of the fat in these Milk Products and 3-9% fat in beef and lamb .
However, people who use dairy products and meat do not need to worry.
Several evaluation studies have concluded that moderate intake of trans fat from ruminants does not appear to be harmful .
The best known trans fat is (CLA), many people believe it is beneficial and consumed as a supplement .
It is found in milk fat from grass-fed cows in relatively large amounts, which are healthy and are associated with a lower risk of heart disease .
However, such positive things can NOT be said about artificial trans fat, also called industrial trans fat or fat. hydrogenated.
These fats are created by injecting hydrogen molecules into vegetable oil. This changes the chemical structure of the oil, turning it from liquid to solid .
This process involves high pressure, hydrogen gas, metal catalysts and is very dangerous, in fact, anyone who considers them suitable for human consumption is confusing.
After being hydrogenated, vegetable oil has a longer shelf life and solid at room temperature, with a similarity to saturated fats.
Although humans have consumed natural trans fat (from ruminants) for a very long time, the same thing is NOT true for artificial trans fat, extremely dangerous.
Summary: Natural trans fat is found in some animal products and is not harmful. Artificial trans fat is created by "hydrogenating" vegetable oil in a rigorous chemical process.
Trans fat and risk of heart disease
Over the past few decades, there have been many clinical trials of trans fat.
In these clinical trials, people were given trans fat (from hydrogenated vegetable oils) instead of other fats or carbohydrates.
Health impacts are assessed by looking at known risk factors for heart disease, such as cholesterol or lipoproteins that carry cholesterol around.
The replacement carbohydrates (1% of calories) with trans fat increases LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) significantly, but does not increase HDL cholesterol ("good").
However, most other fats tend to increase LDL and HDL cholesterol .
Similarly, replacing other fats in trans fat diets significantly increases total cholesterol / HDL cholesterol and negatively affects lipoprotein (ApoB / ApoA1 ratio), both risk factors. muscle is important for heart disease .
However, this exceeds the risk factors, we have also had many studies observing the relationship between trans fat and the risk of heart disease .
Summary: Both observational studies and clinical trials have shown that trans fat significantly increases the risk of heart disease.
Insulin sensitivity and type II diabetes
The relationship between trans fat and the risk of diabetes is unclear.
A large study of more than 80,000 women found that high-trans fat consumers had a 40% higher risk of diabetes .
However, two other similar studies did not find any relationship between trans fat intake and diabetes .
Some controlled trials in humans have also considered trans fat and important diabetes risk factors, such as insulin resistance and blood sugar.
Unfortunately, the results were inconsistent, some studies seem to indicate harm, while others show no effect .
However, some animal studies have shown that large amounts of trans fat have negative effects on insulin and glucose function .
The most remarkable thing is that the six-year study in monkeys discovered a high-trans fat diet (8%). calories ) elevated insulin resistance, abdominal obesity and fructosamine, signs of high blood sugar .
Summary: It is possible that trans fats cause insulin resistance and type II diabetes, but the results from human studies are inconsistent.
Trans fat and inflammation
Excess inflammation is believed to be one of the leading causes of chronic diseases in the West.
These include heart disease, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, arthritis and many other diseases.
There have been three clinical trials investigating the relationship between trans fats and inflammation.
Two studies show that trans fat increases signs of inflammation like and when replacing other nutrients in the diet .
The third study replaced animal butter with margarine and found no difference .
In observational studies, trans fat is associated with increased inflammatory signs, including especially in people with a lot of body fat .
From looking at the evidence, trans fat is an important agent of inflammation that seems to be quite obvious, which can lead to all kinds of problems.
Summary: Clinical trials and observational studies show that trans fats increase inflammation, especially in overweight or obese people.
Blood vessels and cancer
Trans fat is thought to damage the inner lining of blood vessels, known as
When saturated fat is replaced by trans fat in a 4-week study, HDL cholesterol was down 21% and the ability to expand arteries was reduced by 29% .
Signal also increased when substituted carbohydrate and monounsaturated fats .
Unfortunately, very few studies have examined the relationship between trans fat and cancer.
Under Nurses ’Health Study, the amount of pre-menopausal trans fat is associated with an increased risk of postmenopausal breast cancer .
However, the two review studies concluded that the link to cancer was very weak. So far no convincing connection has been observed .
Summary: Trans fat may damage the inner lining of blood vessels, causing a condition called endothelial dysfunction. The impact on cancer risk is less clear.
Trans fat in modern diets
Hydrogenated vegetable oil (the largest source of trans fat) is cheap and has a long shelf life.
For this reason, they are found in all current processed foods.
Fortunately, because governments and health organizations around the world have strictly controlled trans fat, consumption has decreased in recent years.
In 2003, adults in the United States consumed 4.6 grams of artificial trans fat daily on average. This has been reduced to 1.3 grams per day .
In Europe, it is found that Mediterranean countries consume the lowest amount of trans fat. This partly explains their low risk of cardiovascular disease .
Only recently has FDA decided to remove the status (recognized as safe) for trans fat although these studies have been launched for many years.
However, even though trans fat consumption is lower than before, it is still too high and should be reduced to a level 0 .
Summary: Consumption of trans fat has decreased significantly in recent years. However, current consumption is still high enough to cause harm.
How to avoid trans fat
Major reforms have been made in recent years, although trans fat is still in many processed foods.
In the US, manufacturers can label "trans fat-free" on their products as long as there is less than 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving.
You can see how some "trans fat-free" cookies can quickly cause harm.
To make sure you are avoiding trans fat, please Read food labels . Do not eat foods that are "hydrogenated" or "hydrogenated" in the ingredient list.
Unfortunately reading labels is not enough for every case. Some processed foods (such as regular vegetable oils) may contain trans fat without any sign on the label or ingredient list.
An American study analyzed soybean oil and canola oil sold in stores for sale 0.56% to 4.2% fat is trans fat without any sign on the packaging .
To avoid trans fat, the best thing you can do is remove processed foods from your diet.
Fat is naturally converted from safe animal products.
However, trans fat is industrialized (artificial) from processed foods Very toxic.
Studies have reliably linked trans fat to cardiovascular problems, including heart disease.
Consumption is also associated with chronic inflammation, insulin resistance and the risk of type II diabetes, especially for overweight or obese people.
Although the amount of trans fat in the modern diet has decreased, the average consumption remains high at dangerous levels.
Unfortunately, labels on snacks and processed vegetable oils are not always reliable. Many "trans fat-free" products still contain this fat.
You have just been warned.