First up in the nursing news this week is a look at a great overview of the history of the recent trans-fatty acids ban from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). It’s over at ReportingOnHealth.org where reporter William Heisel.
History of Trans Fat Danger and Risks
I like this article because it goes farther than just reporting on the U.S. ban on these food additives. The article reports on the history of how trans fats were identified as problematic by medical researchers internationally and how it eventually became part of a worldwide dietary recommendation from the World Health Organization (WHO).
The first country to ban Trans Fats was Denmark back in 2003. Eventually much of the industrialized world followed suit. The U.S. is relatively late to the game here, probably because of a combination of powerful food lobbying at the congressional level and the fact that the U.S. government doesn’t pay for most people’s healthcare as they do in other nations. Despite the food industry being asked to voluntarily stop putting trans fats into food by the WHO, they continued and actually increased the use of trans fats in foods because they improved shelf life of baked goods like donuts.
This is good news for the health of our nation although not necessarily for people who like many snack foods. The banning of trans fats in foods means that a whole new generation of the population will grow up without these damaging food additives and will help to improve their cardiovascular health over a lifetime.
We may not live to see that benefit but it will come true, non-the-less. This change will fall to the healthcare and dietary professionals to propose better alternatives for our patients.
Make sure you follow-up on the links for this news item and all of the other news and additional resource links from this week’s episode – Improving Nurse / Physician Communication and Episode 351.