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Karen Asks "Why?" Part 2 - Hydrogenated & partially hydrogenated oils | RIPPEDCLUB

Karen Asks “Why?” Part 2

Karen Asks “Why?” Part 2

By RIPPEDCLUB Member: Karen MacKinnon

Seriously….This is an hour of my time I am NEVER going to get back.  Don’t get me wrong!  I did learn some things and got some “why’s” answered.  It just seemed like an excruciatingly long period of time to get the answer to WHY is Hydrogenated/partially hydrogenated oils bad.  It could be that the first 30 minutes was the chemistry part about Saturated, Monounsaturated, Polyunsaturated, carbon bonds and carbon atoms and double bonds and two or more double bonds.  Blah Blah Blah…Bond Bond Bond.  When all I could think about was James Bond and when was lunch.   I am going to save you the pain and the time.

Drum roll please…………  the answer is …….  You’re gonna have to read the article.  If I told you WHY that would be like telling you WHO DID IT at the beginning of a murder mystery.  🙂


Hydrogenated/partially hydrogenated oils.

If you are eating HYDROGENATED OR PARTIALLY HYDROGENATED FATS OR OIL you are asking for trouble! If the label contains the words hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated, do not let your family eat it. If the label contains the words hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated, do not let your friends eat it. If the label contains the words hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated, get it out of your family’s kitchen. Read labels and avoid these substances like they are poisons … which they are.   Nothing like the shock factor to keep your attention.

Hydrogenation is the chemical process by which liquid vegetable oil is turned into solid fat. Partially hydrogenated oils contain trans fatty acids, or trans fats.  The Dr/teacher/lecture guy turns to the class and says while nodding “and we ALL know how bad trans fats are” turns back to the screen and proceeds with the lecture.  I look around and see other people nodding and talking amongst themselves.  Nowhere did it say I needed to take the “Trans Fats” class before I could take this one.  Ya I “heard” we shouldn’t eat that…but WHY?

This is WHY – Trans fats raise levels of bad cholesterol and lower levels of good cholesterol!  

I LOVE Wikipedia’s definition of Trans Fats – “A side effect of incomplete hydrogenation having implications for human health.”   A side effect???  Implications???

Before 2006, companies did not have to list the trans fat content on labels.  The rule WAS, if the product contains the words  “shortening”, “partially hydrogenated oil” or “hydrogenated oil” IT CONTAINED TRANS FAT.  That use to be the only way to know if a product had trans fats in it.  Yet a number of products state “0g Trans Fat” or declare themselves to be trans-fat free but still have these oils listed in their ingredients. How can this be?

With consumers getting smarter and reading labels, companies have to come up with ways to get us to eat their products yet still abide by the FDA rules.  The rule is:  trans fat content only needs to be listed if the food contains 0.5 grams or more of it per serving.   What that means is, if a food contains 0.49 grams of trans fat in 1 serving, that food will have “Trans Fat: 0 grams” listed in its nutrition facts.  Sneaky buggers!

  • First, few people ever eat 1 serving of anything. So, if someone happened to eat 2 servings of a food that contained 0.49 grams of trans fat per serving, they’d eat just under 1 full gram of trans fat all while thinking they ate “0 grams.”
  • Second, even if just 1 serving was eaten, any trans fat is still too much trans fat. Yes, less than 0.5 grams isn’t quite 10 grams, but it’s still FAR from fantastic and, over the course of the day, adds up.
  • Third, many foods mess around with their serving size until they get it to a point where they reach that 0.49 grams of trans fat (or lower) sweet spot for the sole purpose of being allowed to put “0 grams” on their label.
  • Fourth, there are a ton of foods that go out of their way to print something along the lines of “This food contains 0 grams of trans fat! We are super awesome because of this!” in big bold letters right on the front of the package to show off just how “healthy” the food is and to give you further reason to buy and eat it. In reality, however, an insanely large number of the foods doing this do indeed contain some amount of trans fat per serving (less than 0.5 grams of course). So, as if it wasn’t bad enough that foods can have “Trans Fat: 0 grams” on their label even though the food actually contains it, many of these foods take it even further by bringing extra attention this fact/lie and turn it into another selling point of the food.

And while you are processing all of this, bare in mind that the American Heart Association recommends that we consume a maximum of 2 grams of trans fat per day. However, they go on to say that there is enough naturally occurring trans fat in some meat and dairy products that most people already reach this maximum 2 grams without the additional consumption of the man-made trans fats.

Long story short, people who care about their health should ideally be aiming to consume as close to 0 grams of trans fat per day as they possibly can. 

SAVING THE BEST FOR LAST:    Yes its true ….that half solidified partially hydrogenated room temperature margarine remains that way while it travels through you body.

I think I just lost half of my readers with that comment.   Here is Dr. Siegel with his thoughts on it  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iEJhBoUezZA

~Karen MacKinnon


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