Monday, December 07, 2009

Health Check's "trans-fat free" = 5% trans fat!

Check this out - here a quote from a Health Check promotion,

"Health Check is trans fat free! All Health Check grocery products and restaurant menu items meet the trans fat levels recommended by a federal task force of health professionals, government and industry including the Heart and Stroke Foundation. The Health Check criteria are in line with the recommendations of the Trans Fat Task Force: trans fat in vegetable oils and soft margarines be no more than 2% of total fat and for all other foods that trans fats be limited to no more than 5% of total fat."
Gee, and here I thought trans-fat free meant zero grams of trans fat.

You wanna know who managed to set a more stringent trans fat requirement?

Kentucky Fried Chicken where there's not an item on the menu that has more than 3% trans fat.

To put 5% into some context.

Most folks' diets range between 20 and 30% of total daily calories from fat which would represent roughly 60grams of fat.

Health Check would therefore allow a consumption of 2-3g daily of trans-fat and call itself trans-fat "free".

So does the Heart and Stroke Foundation know that 2-3g of trans-fat daily is bad for you?

I'd say so, check out these quotes from Heart and Stroke Foundation President Sally Brown,
"Trans fats are a "toxic" killer that need to be removed from the food chain as soon as possible"
National Post Jan. 11th, 2007

"We want this toxin - which is what it is - removed from our food supply"
CNews, Apr. 5th, 2007

"There is no safe amount of trans consumption."
The Windsor Star, Jun. 5, 2007
You know, while I realize that the removal of trans-fat can be challenging, given that Sally Brown's Heart and Stroke Foundation actually administers the Health Check program, what exactly is stopping them from creating nutritional criteria that are justifiably laudable? Why would they cater to Big Food to allow even 1%, let alone 5% trans-fat in Health Check approved products (excepting of course naturally occurring trans-fat)? And if they're so concerned with your health and well being, why is it I even have to ask?