Thursday, November 7 2013, 12:05 PM EST
FDA to Ban Artery-clogging Trans Fats
By Mary Clare Jalonick, Associated Press

 In this Jan. 18, 2012, file photo, Alexes Garcia makes cinnamon rolls for student's lunch in the kitchen at Kepner Middle School in Denver. The rolls are made using apple sauce instead of trans fats. (AP Photo/Ed Andrieski, File)

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Heart-clogging trans fats have been slowly disappearing from grocery aisles and restaurant menus in the last decade. Now, the Food and Drug Administration is finishing the job.

The FDA announced Thursday it will require the food industry to gradually phase out artificial trans fats, saying they are a threat to people's health. Commissioner Margaret Hamburg said the move could prevent 20,000 heart attacks and 7,000 deaths each year.

Hamburg said that while the amount of trans fats in the country's diet has declined dramatically in the last decade, they "remain an area of significant public health concern." The trans fats have long been criticized by nutritionists, and New York City and other local governments have banned them.

The agency isn't yet setting a timeline for the phase-out, but it will collect comments for two months before officials determine how long it will take. Different foods may have different timelines, depending how easy it is to find a substitute.

"We want to do it in a way that doesn't unduly disrupt markets," said Michael Taylor, FDA's deputy commissioner for foods. Still, he says, the food "industry has demonstrated that it is, by and large, feasible to do."

Though they have been removed from many items, the fats are still found in processed foods, including in some microwave popcorns and frozen pizzas, refrigerated doughs, cookies, biscuits and ready-to-use frostings. They are also sometimes used by restaurants that use the fats for frying. Many larger chains have phased them out, but smaller restaurants may still get food containing trans fats from suppliers.

Trans fats are widely considered the worst kind for your heart, even worse than saturated fats, which also can contribute to heart disease. Trans fats are used both in processed food and in restaurants, often to improve the texture, shelf life or flavor of foods. Diners shouldn't be able to detect a taste difference if trans fats are replaced by other fats.

To phase them out, the FDA said it had made a preliminary determination that trans fats no longer fall in the agency's "generally recognized as safe" category, which is reserved for thousands of additives that manufacturers can add to foods without FDA review. Once trans fats are off the list, anyone who wants to use them would have to petition the agency for a regulation allowing it, and that would likely not be approved.

The fats are created when hydrogen is added to vegetable oil to make it more solid, which is why they are often called partially hydrogenated oils. The FDA is not targeting small amounts of trans fats that occur naturally in some meat and dairy products, because they would be too difficult to remove and aren't considered a major public health threat on their own.

Scientists say there are no health benefits to trans fats and say they can raise levels of so-called "bad" cholesterol, increasing the risk of heart disease - the leading cause of death in the United States.

Many companies have already phased out trans fats, prompted by new nutrition labels introduced by FDA in 2006 that list trans fats and an by an increasing number of local laws that have banned them. In 2011, Wal Mart pledged to remove all artificial trans fats from the foods the company sells by 2016.

As a result of the local and federal efforts and many companies' willingness to remove them, consumers have slowly eaten fewer of the fats. According to the FDA, trans fat intake among American consumers declined from 4.6 grams per day in 2003 to around one gram per day in 2012.

Dr. Leon Bruner, chief scientist at the Grocery Manufacturers Association, said in a statement his group estimates that food manufacturers have voluntarily lowered the amount of trans fats in food products by 73 percent.

The group, which represents the country's largest food companies, did not speculate on a reasonable timeline or speak to how difficult the move may be for some manufacturers. Bruner said in a statement that "consumers can be confident that their food is safe, and we look forward to working with the FDA to better understand their concerns and how our industry can better serve consumers."

FDA officials say they have been working on trans fat issues for around 15 years - the first goal was to label them - and have been collecting data to justify a possible phase-out since just after President Barack Obama came into office in 2009.

The advocacy group Center for Science in the Public Interest first petitioned FDA to ban trans fats nine years ago. The group's director, Michael Jacobson, says the move is "one of the most important lifesaving actions the FDA could take."

He says the agency should try to move quickly as it determines a timeline.

"Six months or a year should be more than enough time, especially considering that companies have had a decade to figure out what to do," Jacobson said.


Follow Mary Clare Jalonick on Twitter:

© 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. Learn more about our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use.
FDA to Ban Artery-clogging Trans Fats

Advertise with us!

Related Stories

  • WTVC :: Community - Hats from the Heart

    Hats from the Heart

    Show your support for breast cancer patients in our community.
  • WTVC :: Community - The Human Race

    The Human Race

    Check out videos on The Human Race here!
  • WTVC :: Community - Side Roads

    Side Roads

    Take a ride with Brian Smith to explore the unique people and places to be found along the Sideroads of the NewsChannel 9 viewing area.
  • WTVC :: Community - The Good Life

    The Good Life

    Celebrating the events, adventures and activities that represent "The Good Life" in the NewsChannel 9 viewing area.
  • WTVC :: Community - Closings and Delays

    Closings and Delays

    These are the latest School and Business Closings reported to NewsChannel 9. If you see errors or need to add a school or business, call 423-757-7320.
  • WTVC :: Community - Educator of the Week

    Educator of the Week

    View the 2015 Tennessee Lottery Educator of the Week!
  • WTVC :: Community - Wednesday's Child

    Wednesday's Child

  • WTVC :: Community - Deaf & Hard of Hearing

    Deaf & Hard of Hearing

    Information provided to NewsChannel 9 by members of the Deaf and Hard of Hearing Community.
  • WTVC :: Community - Community Calendar

    Community Calendar

  • WTVC :: Community - Sponsored Events

    Sponsored Events

    Check Back Often for NewsChannel9 Sponsored Events!

News - Top Health Stories

Non-Surgical Procedure to Help Combat Obesity

Young at Heart? Not Most Americans, Government Report Says

Study: Midlife Obesity May Spur Risk for Earlier Alzheimer's

Minority Health Fair in Chattanooga on Saturday

3 in Tennessee Test Positive for West Nile Virus

Video of Kid with Brain Condition Scoring Touchdown Goes Viral

Heartwarming Photo of Woman and Toddler Proves You Don't Need Limbs for Hugging

USDA Prepares for Possible Return of Bird Flu This Fall

CDC Warns of Pool Parasite This Summer

Parkridge Medical Center Expansion Approved

Study Shows Red Wine Helps Shed Pounds

A Local Mom Finds Support and Treatment for Her Children Living With Dravet Syndrome

Doctors Warn Against Dangers of Skinny Jeans: Don't Squat

General Mills to Drop Artificial Ingredients from Cereals

Blood Assurance in Urgent Need of O-, O Blood

Is Baby Recession Over? US Births Up After Years of Decline

FDA Tells Food Industry to Phase Out Artificial Trans Fats

Obama Administration Cracking Down on Trans Fats

CVS to Acquire and Run Target's Pharmacies in $1.9B Deal

Georgia Senator Isakson Announces Parkinson's Diagnosis

Health Officials Tracing Path of Woman with Rare TB

Confirmed Case of Tuberculosis in Whitfield County

FBI Investigating Medical Device That Spread Cancer in Some Women

Study: Severe Vision Loss is Most Common in the South

Rare Identical Triples -- Two of Which Are Conjoined -- Born in Texas

FDA Releases Plan to Ease Restrictions on Gay Blood Donation

New York Mom Leaves Heartwarming Messages for Daughter Before Dying of Cancer

Mom Catches 2-Year-Old’s Eye Cancer by Snapping Photo

Study Says Ebola Virus Lingers in Patient's Eyeball Even After Recovery

Teen Gymnast Beats Odds, Awakens From Coma

Chlamydia Outbreak Hits Texas High School With No Sex Ed

FDA Approves Double-Chin Eliminator Injection, Kybella

GA Governor Deal Signs Autism Insurance Bill for Kids

Clearing the Air: American Lung Association Says Chattanooga's Breathing Easier

'Success Kid's' Dad Needs a Kidney Transplant

Taylor Swift Reveals Her Mother Has Cancer

Girl Now 'Smiling' After Major Surgery to Reshape Her Face

HCEMS Receives 5 Regional Awards

TN Health Officials Warn of New Mosquito Virus Threat

Parkridge to Discontinue Inpatient and Surgical Care at Parkridge West, 20 Employees Affected

Ultrasound Study Reveals How Some Fetuses React to Smoking Moms

Doctors Warn Allergy Season Could Be Severe

Aspirin Users with Common Genes May Be Less Likely to Get Colon Cancer

CHI Memorial CEO Resigns

Cancer Is in Remission for Teen Forced to Undergo Chemo

Local Family and Erlanger Doctor Appear on "the Doctors"

Cold Weather Tips: How to Avoid Frostbite and Hypothermia

Avoiding Depression during Winter Months

Early Exposure to Peanuts Helps Prevent Allergies in Kids

CDC Clarifies Directives Over Who Needs Measles Vaccines

Family 411: Digital Parenting

Mother of Infant with Cancer Explains Importance of Measles Vaccinations

Lung Cancer Surpasses Breast Cancer for Women in Richer Nations

UK House of Commons OKs Making Babies from DNA of 3 People

US Measles Outbreak Growing, CDC Says

MaryEllen Locher's Battle

The Challenges of Breast Cancer

Breast Cancer Knows No Age

5-Year-Old Girl Dies After Catching the Flu, Even After Getting Vaccine

Millions of GMO Insects Could Be Released in Florida Keys

Cold and Flu Season

Cleveland Police Say Three People Stabbed Each Other

Hamilton Co. Health Dept. Offering Flu Shots

New Research Shows Pizza Wreaking Havoc on Kids' Diets

CDC Report: This Year's Flu Vaccine Only 23% Effective

More Than 172,000 Tennesseans Sign Up for Government Health Care

Students Learn about Signs and Symptoms of Stroke

Emma and William Remain the Most Popular Baby Names in Tennessee

Flu Facts: Tennessee Tops The List of Highest Flu Activity

Surprising New Details About Alcohol Poisoning in New CDC Report

CDC Reports Flu Activity Worsens Nationwide

NewsChannel9 Gets Flu Tested

Tenn. Health Officials Urge Vigilance Following Flu Deaths

U.S. Moves Towards Dropping Lifetime Ban on Gay Blood Donations

Verizon Announces $10,000 Matching Grant for Partnership’s Family Violence Center

Hamilton County Health Officials Explain Ineffectiveness of Flu Vaccine

Tennessee Dept. of Health Unveils New Magazine

Oh, Baby! Colorado Mother Gives Birth to 14-pounder

Mechanical Lift Story Update: More Patients Identify With Being Dropped

Calorie Counting Will Soon be Easier

Hutcheson to Continue Operations Under Chapter 11 Protection

Chemical in Antibacterial Soap Promoted Tumor Growth in Mice

Tennessee Has Lowest Number of Uninsured in a Decade

Controlling Diabetes to Prevent Blindness

Son Recalls How Eating Raw Cookie Dough Led to His Mom's Death

CDC: E-cigarette Use Rising in High School Kids

Robin Williams' Death Report Finds Lewy Body Dementia

Facebook Plea Gets Liver Transplant for 3-Year-Old

Erlanger’s Chief Nurse Executive Earns Top Management Credential

Haslam Says Federal Medicaid Discussions Ongoing

Cincinnati Bengals Reach Out for Player's Daughter Fighting Cancer

Children’s Hospital awarded $375,000 Grant from BlueCross

'Post-Ebola Syndrome' Persists After Virus Is Cured, Doctor Says

Dunlap Company Manufactures Zippers for Ebola Hazmat Suits

Tennessee Senators Hold Forum on Ebola

Nurse Who Had Ebola to Make Statement on Her Discharge from Hospital

Ebola: the Latest on the Search for the Cure

Doctors Explain Cause of Death For Catoosa Co. Boy

Ebola 'Poses No Threat to Others,' Mayor Assures New York

New York Doctor Tests Positive For Ebola

CDC to Monitor All Travelers from Ebola-Affected Countries for 3 Days

Ebola Update: New U.S. Airport Screenings, Spanish Nurse Recovers, Vaccine Planned for January Release in Africa

Ebola: the Latest on the Search for the Cure

Dallas Ebola Watch Clears First Group Quarantined

Hutcheson Medical Center Awarded Accreditation from the Joint Commission

Ebola Vs. Flu: Do you know the difference?

BREAKING: 2nd TX Health Care Worker Diagnosed with Ebola Flew on a Plane the Day Before Diagnosis

Hospital Supporters Launch

World Health Organization Forecasts 10,000 New Cases per Week from Ebola in Two Months

Riverview Shops to Host Fundraiser for MaryEllen Locher Breast Center

How to Tell If Your Child Has Enterovirus

US Journalist Believes He Got Ebola While Cleaning Infected Car

Breast Cancer: A Man's Survival Story

Minority Women and Breast Cancer

Officials Confirm First Ebola Case Diagnosed in US

Erlanger East to Expand to Full Service Hospital

Line-up Begins at Midnight Friday for Free Medical Clinic in Ooltewah

Study: Artificial Sweeteners May Promote Diabetes

Report Finds Most New Cancer Drugs Target DNA

Study Finds Secret to Lasting Marriage Is a Happy Wife

Green Juice: Healthy, or Not So Much?

Single Mom Shares Story of Being Pregnant at 51

Children Most Affected by Virus Outbreak

Ebola Victim Breaks Her Silence:

101 and Staying Healthy, Going Strong

Erlanger Launches Mobile Heart Screening Center

Ice Bucket Challenge Brings Awareness to ALS

Women Keeping 'Botox Secret' From Husbands

Memorial Surgeons First in Area to Use New Breakthrough Procedure

American Doctor With Ebola Got Experimental Antibody Serum Before U.S. Arrival

Bipartisan Deal to Reform VA Includes New Clinic in Chattanooga

Health Officials Scramble to Contain Ebola Outbreak

Family of Deaf Couple Sues Erlanger Hospital

Hopkins Settles Pelvic Exam Suits for $190 Million

Local Hospital Ranked Highly by Magazine

Erlanger Receives $1 M Innovation Award from BlueCross

CDC Mishaps Could Have Been Deadly

Got a Rash? Your iPad Could be to Blame

Is Your Blood O Negative? Join the 6 Percent Club

Olympic Runner Criticized for Training While Pregnant

New TN Law Lets Public Break Windows to Get Kids out of a Hot Car

Medical Panel Suggests Yearly Pap Exams Unnecessary

Memorial to Open Urgent Care Center in Cleveland.

Panel: Flu Spray Better Than Flu Shot

Susan G. Komen Race Turns 15

Free HIV Testing June 26-28

Community Health Center Gets $12,000 Grant

New 'Breast Density' Law Goes Into Effect in TN July 1

Memorail Named Top 100 Great Community Hospital

Memorial Announces Board of Directors for 2014-2015

Woman Videotapes Herself Having a Stroke

Hamilton County Health Officials: Protect Yourself from Chikungunya

Local Health Dept. Urges HPV Vaccinations

Study: Breast Cancer Tests Increase Survival Rate by 30 Percent

FDA Poised to Reduce Salt in Your Food

Teams are forming now for the 2014 Cleveland Heart Walk

Hutcheson Announces Management Team Changes

Life Care Center of East Ridge Grows Neuro-Rehab Specialty Program

Lee University School of Nursing Set to Open in Fall

Study: Teens Are Drinking Less, Texting More

Another Infant Dies in (Recalled) 'Nap Nanny' Incident

Memorial Hospital Names New Heart and Vascular Center

Detection Easy as

Blood Assurance Announces June Blood Drives

Celebrity Summer Slim Down Tips

Veterans Affairs Head Shinseki Resigns Amid VA Controversy

Apison Elementary Educators Get Emergency Training

Protection From Life-Threatening Concussions

Blood Assurance Benefit This Weekend

T.C. Thompson Seeks Support in 'Battle of the Brave'

Local Surgeon And Family on The Doctors TV Show

Erlanger Receives Advertising Awards

Rain or Shine, Chattanooga Pulls Together for March for Babies

Study Finds Pregnancy Tied to Car Crash Risk

Parkridge West Hospital Appoints Emergency Department Director

GMA's Amy Robach 'Kicking Cancer's Butt'

FDA Moving to Regulate E-cigs

Grandview Medical Center in Jasper to Become Parkridge West Hospital

Epilepsy Specialist Joins UT Erlanger Neurology Group

Alzheimer’s Association Support Group Coming to Rhea County

Don Mackler, MD Joins Hutcheson Gastroenterology

UK Scientists Make Body Parts in Lab

Poll Reveals Little Faith in New Healthcare Plan

Area Rite Aids Raising Funds for Children’s Hospital

Rearview Cameras to be Required in New Vehicles

Honorees Announced for 2014 Annual Doctors’ Day Salute

TWC Students Provide Health Care in Costa Rica

'Dash for DS' with Lila and Latricia

Pink! Nets $250,000 for MaryEllen Locher Breast Center

Time Changes Sunday, Quick Tips to Adjust Your Body Clock

Parkridge East Hosts 'Mommy To Bee' Maternity Event

Erlanger and Children’s Hospital Partner with the TN Dept. of Health to Reduce Infant Deaths

Chattanooga Mental Health Facility Pays Penalty for False Claims

CDC: Cruise Ship Bug is Newer Norovirus Strain

CVS to Halt Tobacco Sales

Well-known Erlanger Physician Dies

Erlanger Welcomes OrthoSouth to the UT Erlanger Health Network

HCA Buys Grandview Medical Center

Hamilton County 911 Employees of the Year

Two Flu-related Deaths Confirmed in North Georgia

Ways to Get Fit in 2014

Erlanger Rings in the New Year with First Babies

Flu Shots Encouraged, Free for the Uninsured

Family 411: Holiday Adoptions

New VA Clinics Coming to Region

E-Cigarettes Become Popular Holiday Gifts

Young Man With Downs Accepted to College

Expectant Mothers React to Hutcheson Changes

Memorial Welcomes New Chief Medical Officer

Dr. Robert Bowers is TMA Public Health Champion

Coming Clean About Anti-Bacterial Soap

DCS says It's Doing Better Job Reporting Child Deaths

Henry Family Donates $104,000 to Memorial Foundation

ABC News' Amy Robach Reveals Breast Cancer Diagnosis

Is Football Glory Worth Potential Brain Damage?

FDA to Ban Artery-clogging Trans Fats

Sebelius: Couple of Hundred Website Fixes Required

Carol Sim Named as President and CEO of Siskin Hospital

New Homeless Health Care Clinic Set to Open November 4

Study Finds Long-Term Effects from Spanking Children

Donations South to Aid I-40 Crash Victims

North Georgia Woman Hits Lottery for Third Time

Salmonella Warning Across the Country

A Survivor's Message

More Drug Dependent Newborns in Tennessee

Parkridge East Hosts 'Mommy To Bee' Event, Nov. 2

Affordable Care Act Exchanges Open, Information Session in Chattanooga

Alternative Music Festival in Cleveland Raises Funds for Children's Hospital

Your Health - Is There an App For That?

Color Run raises $7,000 for Children's Hospital

Getting Healthcare for Kids

Three New West Nile Virus Cases in Tennessee

Powerful Story to be Told by Young mother and Stroke Survivor

U.S. One of Last Holdouts for Paid Maternity Leave

New Hamilton County Emergency Service Station Opens

Will Affordable Healthcare Really be Affordable?

Lung Transplant Girl Goes Home

Sheraton Read House Hosts 'Historic' Event for Children’s Hospital

Dr. Jeremy Bruce Joins Parkridge Medical Center Staff

MaryEllen Locher Breast Center Hosts Book Signing

A Closer Look at Healthcare Reform

Gov. Haslam Promoting Healthier Tennessee

Consumer Reports Rates Local Hospitals

Dr. Bill Moore Smith Tapped for Leadership Role at Erlanger

GOP Senator Calls Obamacare a 'Train Wreck'

Dr. Alexander Roberts Joins Staff of Parkridge Medical Center

Down Syndrome Awareness Night at the Lookouts

Erlanger Recognized by U.S. News & World Report

Memorial Hospital Names Hospital Presidents

Family Donates to Children's Hospital in Daughter's Memory

Memorial Hospital Announces 2013-2014 Board of Directors

Tammy Pietrzak Joins Parkridge Valley as ACNO/COO

Erlanger Opens New Urgent Care

Color Run Raises Funds for Children's Hospital

High School Grad Raises $19,000 for Children's Hospital

Hyundai 'Hope on Wheels' Donates $75,000 to Children's Hospital.

National HIV Testing Day is June 27

Parkridge Medical Center Receives Blue Distinction Center Designation for Quality

Julie Taylor Named Chief Development Officer for Erlanger Foundations

9th Southeastern Wilderness Medicine Conference June 22-26

Riverbend Expands Smoke-free Zone

Grammy-Nominated Trio Wilson Phillips to Headline StarNight 2013

Widespread Support for Angelina

Actress, Celebrity Angelina Jolie had Double Mastectomy

Free 5-minute Online Assessment for Hepatitis Could Save Your Life.

Dragon Boat Festival Raises $230,000

Ochs Center Releases 'Sobering' Report of Area Health

Wine and Pearls 2013 Raises Nearly $42,000 for Cancer Support

Italian Study: Pizza Reduces Cancer Risk

Belk Offering Free Mammograms

Measures to Protect Tenn. High School, College Students

Parkridge East Hospital Appoints Morgan As Director of Surgical Services

Parkridge East Hospital offers Cardiac and Vascular Screening, May 7

Graphic Anti-Smoking Billboard Draws Attention

Peyton Donates $500,000 to Pat Summitt Foundation

SunTrust Foundation Awards $25,000 to The Next Door Chattanooga

Drs. Caine & Ruffner, Hamilton County Project Access Win Awards

Tenn. Governor Says 'No' to Medicaid Expansion

Chicks and Ducks Are Cute, but Not for Easter

Schools Closing Due to Illness

GPS and McCallie Fight Cancer Together

Chattanooga'™s 'œRump Run' 5K Promotes Colon Cancer Awareness

Erlanger Opens New Gunbarrel Rd. Facility

Parkridge Sleep Center Offers Tips for Daylight Saving Time

Possible Breakthrough HIV Cure

Choking Prevention for Children

Pink! Nets $325,000

Parkridge Presents Wine and Pearls

Rapid HIV Testing Offered in Dalton

Memorial Hospital Receives Cardiology Award

Gunshot Victim Making a Difference at Life Care Center of Red Bank

Advertise with us!

Business News

Major business and economic reports today

WASHINGTON (AP) -- There's only one major government economic report scheduled for release today. The Commerce Department will report on wholesale trade inventories for August.

Consumer Info

   WEST PALM BEACH, FL -- (Marketwired) -- 03/21/14 --
 Companies that pride themselves on being eco-friendly may have conflicted
 ideas between marketing with ad specialties and maintaining their green
 reputation. ...

Entertainment News


LOS ANGELES (AP) -- For the second time in a decade, Bill Cosby will have to answer questions under oath in a sexual assault case.

Get This


LEE'S SUMMIT, Mo. (AP) -- The Royals could have used Mickey Cobb's ring last night.

Science/Tech News


NEW YORK (AP) -- It's happened to all of us on Facebook: someone says a loved one is ill or that they're going through some other kind of tough time.


Tonight on WTVC NewsChannel 9

6:00 NewChannel 9 

6:30 ABC World News Tonight

7:00 Wheel of Fortune

7:30 Jeopardy 

8:00 Shark Tank

9:00 What Would You Do?

10:00 20/20

11:00 NewsChannel 9 

11:35 Jimmy Kimmel Live

Complete Schedule »

Storm Cam Network
Weather App
Pay It Forward
No Text Zone

Advertise with us!