FDA, Hoping to Save Lives, Moves to Ban Trans Fat

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The long war on trans fats may be drawing to a close. The government proposed new rules Thursday that would all but ban the artery-clogging fats, a move that will force makers of margarine, frozen pizza and other processed foods to reformulate their products.


The FDA moves to ban trans fats, vegetable oils that have been mixed with hydrogen to increase shelf life and mimic the flavor and feel of butter or lard. (Credit: Getty Images)

Under the new rules, the Food and Drug Administration has declared that partially hydrogenated oils, the source of trans fats, are a food additive no longer “generally recognized as safe.”That would require companies wishing to use the ingredient to first seek approval from the FDA, which is unlikely to grant permission given the volume of research linking trans fats to heart disease.

“The FDA’s action today is an important step toward protecting more Americans from the potential dangers of trans fat,” said FDA Commissioner Margaret A. Hamburg.

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