why trans fats bad
Medically reviewed by Sara Osman,RD,PT

Introduction

Trans fatty acids are not essential and confer no known health benefits[1]. Although they are classified as unsaturated fats, they behave like saturated fats in the body [1].

Trans fats are man-made and formed by either partially or fully hydrogenating monounsaturated or polyunsaturated fatty acids [1,6].

Partially hydrogenated oils can withstand repeated heating without breaking down, making them ideal for frying fast foods, baked products, processed snacks and margarine. Trans fats are also found in beef and dairy products in small amounts [6]

According to Harvard research, for each additional 2% of calories from trans fat consumed daily, risk of coronary heart diseases increases by 23% and 16% higher chance of premature death [5,6].

Hence, it is recommended that individuals maintain their trans fatty acid consumption as low as possible.

As per the World Health Organization guidelines, trans fats intake goals are set to be less than 1 E% where E % is the percentage of total dietary energy (E%) or as grams per day for adults. [3]

Absorption/Storage/Excretion

The absorption rate for trans fatty acids is around 95% [2].

Trans fatty acids are completely catabolized to carbon dioxide and water [2].

Excessive Intake/ Toxicity Side Effects

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Medically reviewed by Sara Osman,RD,PT

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