Argument: Trans fats are uniquely bad for human health

Issue Report: Trans fat ban


Northwestern campus dietitian Theresa Laurenz said in May 2011: “Science directly changed the oils to hydrogenate them so they could last longer on the shelf. And when they found out that these particular fats are very harmful for our health where they increase our bad cholesterol and decrease our good cholesterol, it made a very clear choice that it is something that we don’t need, and we really should cut out.”[1] Trans fats, also known as “partially hydrogenated oils,” are created by adding hydrogen to liquid vegetable oils to make them more solid. These fats raise bad cholesterol levels and increase risks of developing heart disease and stroke.[2]

“Ban Trans Fats.” Washington Post Editorial. November 6th, 2006: “The evidence that doctors and public health experts presented makes you think twice about picking up a Whopper: Trans fats, which are chemically engineered, decrease levels of desirable cholesterol while increasing harmful cholesterol; they increase dangerous inflammation that can contribute to the onset of diabetes; and they harden artery walls, which increases blood pressure. Trans fats are much worse than even naturally occurring — and still very unhealthy — saturated fats such as those found in butter. Dariush Mozaffarian, a Harvard cardiologist and epidemiologist, calculated that up to 22 percent of heart attacks in the United States are the result of trans fat consumption.”