WHO wants to rid the world of trans fat by 2023

WHO wants to rid the world of trans fat by 2023
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The World Health Organization (WHO) on Monday launched its guide to eliminate artificial trans fat from all food by the year 2023.

The initiative, called Replace, offers a “step-by-step” guide for nations to follow to remove trans fat from their diets.

Several high-income countries have already come close to eliminating trans fat through laws limiting the amount that can be included in packaged food.

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However, more action is needed in low- and middle-income countries where regulation of industrially made trans fat is often weak, the WHO argues.

"Implementing the six strategic actions in the REPLACE package will help achieve the elimination of trans fat, and represent a major victory in the global fight against cardiovascular disease,” said WHO Director-General Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus.

Trans fats are created when vegetable oil hardens. The resulting hydrogenated fats can then be used in a variety of food products, from margarine to crackers to coffee creamers.

While trans fats don’t spoil as quickly as other fats, they pose serious health risks, such as higher risk of Type 2 diabetes and heart disease.

Heart disease — the leading cause of death worldwide— accounts for 610,000 deaths, or a quarter of all deaths, in the U.S. every year, according to the government.