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Is this the end of trans-fats?
BEAUMONT- by Haley Bull
Fast food, frosting, ice cream and crackers all have something in common. Theyre often filled with trans-fat. They help foods last longer on store shelves but also increase the risk of heart disease. Thursday, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration made a preliminary ruling that a major source of trans-fat, partially hydrogenated oils, is no longer safe.
It could mean the end of most trans-fats in food products, but some restaurants and grocery stores in Southeast Texas are already working to get rid of trans-fats.
Salads, soups and sandwiches are just a few items on the menu at Jasons Deli.
I want to be able to eat healthy so I can stay healthy, Ken Reynolds, a customer at the restaurant, said.
The foods are all free of trans-fats.
Everything in our deli, everything in our company is trans-fat free, all the way down to our croutons, Lisa Tillman, the director of product development for Jasons Deli, said.
The deli cut out trans-fats in 2005.
It was about an 8 year process trying to clean up all the ingredients that we had in our, on our menu and in our products, Tillman said. Overall, we had about 47 products that, or menu items that we had to clean up.
Trans fat can be found in everyday grocery items like coffee creamers, microwave popcorn, shortening and even pancake mix. But at Basic Foods in Beaumont, the store tries to sell healthier versions of those foods.
If it stays on the shelf a long time, it stays in your body a long time. You know you need to eliminate those things, Marcia Cavett, an investor at Basic Foods, said. In Basic Foods as much as we know, we do not have products with trans fats.
Customers at Basic Foods, like Hazel Brown, are sold on the idea.
Oh I cut that out a long time ago, Brown said of trans-fats. I look at the labels to make sure theres no trans-fat.
Soon Hazel Brown and every other customer may leave the store without trans-fats in their carts.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is giving a two month comment period on the proposed change before it finalizes its decision. It will not cover naturally occurring trans-fats.