- Trans fats are unsaturated fats processed to make them more stable, often used in processed and fast food products.
- Trans fats can lead to several serious health problems, such as heart disease, high cholesterol, and type 2 diabetes.
- The FDA has banned trans fats in most foods; however, it is still essential to read labels for hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated oils.
- Weight loss treatment, medication treatment, and avoiding fried foods are some treatments that can be used to reduce fat in the body.
Fats are essential to people’s diets, but did you know there are different types of fats, including trans fats? Trans fats are often found in processed foods, fast foods, and baked goods but are unsuitable for your health. Here’s what you need to know about trans fats, how they can affect you, and how to deal with them.
What Are Trans Fats?
Trans fats are unsaturated fats that go through hydrogenation, making them more stable and less likely to spoil. This process changes the molecular structure of the fat from a liquid to a solid at room temperature. Trans fats are often used in baked goods, snack foods, and fast foods because they are inexpensive, have a longer shelf life, and give the food a pleasant taste and texture.
How Do Trans Fats Affect Your Health?
Trans fats have been linked to numerous health problems, including heart disease, high cholesterol, and type 2 diabetes. Trans fats can raise your bad cholesterol (LDL) levels and lower your good cholesterol (HDL) levels. This imbalance can contribute to plaque build-up in your arteries, leading to heart attacks and strokes. In addition, trans fats can cause inflammation, making it harder for your body to fight infections and diseases.
How To Avoid Trans Fats In Your Diet?
The good news is that the FDA has banned trans fats, and most food manufacturers have stopped using them in their products. However, it is still important to read food labels carefully to avoid consuming trans fats. Look for products that say “zero trans fats” or “no hydrogenated oils.” Instead, choose foods that contain healthy fats like mono and polyunsaturated fats found in nuts, seeds, avocados, and fatty fish.
Treatments Against Accumulated Fats
When fats accumulate in your body, it’s essential to address the issue immediately. Here are some treatments that can help.
Weight Loss Treatment
Various non-invasive treatments can help you lose weight and reduce the amount of fat in your body. Visit your local weight loss clinic for options. They can check the overall health of your body and recommend the right treatment for you.
Your doctor may prescribe medication to help reduce fat in the body. This could include cholesterol-lowering drugs, insulin sensitizers, and medicines targeting weight gain hormones.
How to Deal With Trans Fats?
Living a healthy lifestyle is not just about avoiding trans fats. Here are some ways you can deal with trans fats.
Read the Label
The first step in dealing with trans fats is reading food labels. Manufacturers must list the number of trans fats in their products on the nutrition facts panel. However, beware of misleading claims such as “trans-fat-free” or “no trans fats,” as these products can still contain small amounts of trans fats. Look for ingredients such as hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils, which often contain trans fats.
Choose Whole Foods
You can also reduce your intake of trans fats by choosing whole foods instead of processed ones. Processed foods often contain added trans fats, while whole foods are naturally low in trans fats. Opt for fresh fruits and vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains, and try to make meals from scratch whenever possible.
Avoid Fried Foods
Fried foods are notorious for containing high levels of trans fats. Choose grilled, baked, or roasted options instead of fried ones when eating out. Try healthier cooking methods such as home steaming, broiling, or air-frying. Try baking potato or vegetable chips in the oven instead of buying fried ones for a satisfying crunch.
In the past, margarine was often marketed as a healthier alternative to butter. However, many margarine brands contain hydrogenated oils and therefore contain trans fats. If you use margarine for cooking or spreading, consider switching to a healthier alternative such as olive oil, coconut oil, or avocado oil. If you crave the taste of butter, try using small amounts of the real thing or opt for a plant-based butter substitute free of trans fats.
Trans fats are an unhealthy addition to your diet and should be avoided as much as possible. Fortunately, there are many ways to deal with trans fats, including reading labels, choosing whole foods, avoiding fried foods, and replacing margarine. Taking these steps can help you reduce your intake of trans fats and lead a healthier lifestyle.