Some Trans Fats Are Good

Trans Fats Are Good
Natural trans fats produced by ruminant animals such as dairy and beef cattle, also called ruminant trans fats, are not detrimental to health, according to a scientific review conducted by Spencer Proctor from University of Alberta.

Spencer carried out the review along with Canadian and international colleagues.

Naturally occurring trans fat has a different fatty acid profile than industrial trans fat, which contributes to its different physiological effects.

In fact, ruminant trans fats show significant positive health effects and some evidence even links them to reduced risk of cardiovascular disease and cancer.

Unfortunately natural trans fats gets clubbed with Industrial trans fats found in partially hydrogenated vegetable oils, which have been strongly associated with cholesterol and coronary heart disease.

"A change in how trans fat information is presented on nutrition labels would be a huge step forward," says Proctor, a researcher in the Department of Agricultural, Food and Nutritional Science who is director of the Metabolic and Cardiovascular Diseases Laboratory at the U of A. "Right now, in Canada and the U.S., a substantial portion of natural trans fats content is included in the nutrition label trans fats calculation, which is misleading for the consumer. We need a reset in our approach to reflect what the new science is telling us."

Spencer adds that in some European countries, natural trans fat is not included in the nutrition label calculation. Another approach may be to have separate listings for industrial trans fats and natural trans fat

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