Food, Dairy Products Safer

Food, Dairy Products SaferFood, Dairy Products Safer

In line with ensuring healthy dairy products and promoting food safety, trans-fatty acids (TFA) in foodstuff has been reduced from 30% to 2-5%  over the past decade, said Hedayat Hosseini, head of Food and Cosmetics Division, at the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

TFA are considered to be some of the most dangerous forms of fat, engineered from liquid oils through a process known as hydrogenation. They were once thought to be the ultimate fat because they enhance the way foods taste. They also extend the shelf life of foods and make crisp foods crunchier and creamy foods creamier. And the price is lower than other fats.

TFA raise cholesterol levels and are a dietary risk factor for a majority of cardiovascular diseases, type 2 diabetes and cancers. They contribute to metabolic syndrome, a combination of factors that multiply a person’s risk for heart disease, diabetes and stroke.

Food safety is a major challenge the world over. Although food safety does not come under the purview of the Health Reform Plan launched in May 2014, the FDA has successfully carried out important measures within the scope of the plan, Hosseini added.

An important measure introduced last year (ended March 20) was banning palm oil in dairy products. Checking fraudulent practices in vegetable fatty acids is also strictly monitored. The testing of dairy product samples by various universities show adherence to food safety regulations.

Hosseini also said one percent of reduced TFA equals one percent of lives saved; this has a considerable impact on the country’s population of nearly 80 million.

Unexplained fatigue, excessive weight gains, physical pain, loss of energy in the middle of the day and memory problems are related to metabolic syndrome caused by TFA.

Healthy alternatives are strongly recommended to substitute TFA; olive oil, sesame oil, canola oil, omega-3 rich foods like salmon, tuna, sardines, almonds, walnuts and flaxseed are all classified as healthy fats.