Want better memory? Avoid Trans Fats!

OK folks, this is fresh off the press from the American Heart Association  …  “Trans fat consumption is linked to diminished memory in working-aged adults.”  I’ll give you some of the details of this study in a moment but first, we should talk about trans fats in general.

I’m sure you’ve heard something about trans fats.  Even the labels that you see at the grocery store saying …“contains no trans fats” …. give a clue that trans fats are probably not good for you.  The reality is that all indications point to trans fats being bad for our health, especially in creating dangerous fat buildup in our arteries … just the thing to increase our risk of heart attack and stroke.  Trans fats are partially hydrogenated oils that convert the liquid oil into a solid.  Since these oils are usually vegetable oils, it sounds pretty healthy.  Sounds OK but not OK.

Read fellow Oatie Linda’s great post on the evils of trans fats!  The first trans fat product was introduced in 1911 (old-fashioned Crisco) and many more followed.  It was 80 years later that studies starting documenting the unhealthy effects of trans fats.  Denmark banned them in 2003, and many other countries followed!  Finally, in 2013, the FDA had proposed a regulation that would declare partially hydrogenated oils unsafe.

The link between trans fats and heart disease is well established.  Now, this new study  shows a direct association between high trans fat consumption and poor performance on a word memory test.  The higher the trans fat intake, the poorer the memory  …. and this was independent of education, ethnicity and age.  The researchers feel that trans fats decrease the production of cell energy and that effect was the cause of the impaired memory.

The American Heart Association recommends limiting trans fats to less than 1% of our daily calories. A recent study shows that men still eat about 1.9% of daily calories from trans fats and the number is 1.7% for women.   The most common sources of trans fats are margarine, fast foods, baked goods, snack foods, frozen pizza, coffee creamers and some refrigerated doughs.

We want good memory.  We want healthy hearts.  Trans fats are not good for either one!  We’ve heard it before, you are what you eat! Let’s eat healthy and avoid the trans fats!

Oh, and yes, there are no trans fats in any Wild Oats product!  Why am I not surprised?

Additional Resource:

New England Journal of Medicine article

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