How the New Trans Fat Ban Will Affect You (and the Foods You Love)

Credit: Flickr Creative Commons, m01229

Credit: Flickr Creative Commons, m01229

U.S. Food and Drug Administration has finalized it: No more trans fats.

Partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs), the primary dietary source of artificial trans fat in processed foods, are not “generally recognized as safe” or GRAS for use in human food. Food manufacturers will have three years to remove PHOs from products. This means that PHOs may no longer be added to food after June 18, 2018, unless they are otherwise approved by FDA.

Why Trans Fat is Bad For You (and where you can find it)

Trans Fat is a liquid fat that is turned into a solid, by a process called hydrogenation.

Consuming trans fat increases LDL (aka “bad”) cholesterol and decreases HDL (aka “good”) cholesterol – both are risk factors that lead to coronary heart disease, according to the CDC.

Trans fat is used to give foods a different texture/shelf-life.

“In this case, it has become clear that what’s good for extending shelf-life is not equally good for extending human life,” writes Susan Mayne, Ph.D., Director of FDA’s Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition

Trans fat is most commonly found in:

  • Processed foods
  • Fried foods
  • Snack foods, such as chips, crackers & cookies
  • Margarine & salad dressings
  • Pie crusts
  • Frozen pizza
  • Coffee creamers

Do You Know This Trans Fat Trick?

Even if you think you’ve managed to avoid trans fat, you may still be accidentally eating it.

Credit: Jessie Inchauspe

Credit: Jessie Inchauspe

A common trick among food marketers is to splash the words “0 trans fat!” across the packaging – but in US supermarkets, if a product has less than 0.5g of trans fats per serving, the FDA allows the food label to read ‘0 grams trans fats per serving’.

This measure is misleading, among other tricks food marketers use to get you to buy more. These hidden servings of trans fats can add up quickly, especially since most products containing them make sure the serving size is small enough for the ‘0 trans fats’ label to be allowed.

How to spot them: Remember to look for any mention of ‘hydrogenated’ or ‘partially hydrogenated’ oil. This directly implies the presence of trans fats, despite what the packaging claims.

What’s Next?

This ban was a long time coming. In 2013, the FDA made a tentative determination that Partially Hydrogenated Oils could no longer be considered GRAS. This determination came after considering public comments.

As America continues to examine the connection between what we eat and our health, you can be sure to see more changes in the food industry, from removing artificial ingredients to providing more informative nutrition labeling, to reducing sugar additives.

The quality of your food matters.

How WellnessFX Can Help

Curious About Your Fat Stats?

The best way to know your health risks is to get a blood test. Once you know where you are on the risk scale, you’ll know what lifestyle changes you should incorporate. If you re-test after approximately four months, the time it takes for blood cells to regenerate, you’ll know if your changes have been working.

Testing lipid levels is great for understanding baseline cardiovascular health – we have options to test basic cardiovascular health biomarkers, such as your Triglycerides and ApoB, or to test advanced heart health biomarkers, such as the lipid particle number and size.

You can dive even deeper to see your omega fatty acid levels. For this we recommend a WellnessFX Omega Panel, which measures the levels of essential fatty acids in your blood, and tests the ratio of the most healthful omegas (omega-3s) to other omegas (omega-6s). When these levels are optimized, they have been shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease, cancer, dementia, and many other inflammatory diseases.

Eliminating trans-fats and optimizing the levels of omegas in the blood can vastly improve your health.

Get a Blood Test

To learn more about fat and food additives, check out:

The posts on this blog are for information only, and are not intended to substitute for a doctor-patient or other healthcare professional-patient relationship nor do they constitute medical or healthcare advice of any kind. Any information in these posts should not be acted upon without consideration of primary source material and professional input from one's own healthcare professionals.

Metabolic Syndrome is Increasingly Common. Here Are the Warning Signs (and 5 Tips to Avoid It)

Credit: Flickr Creative Commons, Jeffreyw

Credit: Flickr Creative Commons, Jeffreyw

In a study recently published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (May 19, 2015), researchers found that more than one-third of U.S. adults have metabolic syndrome. Metabolic syndrome increases the risk of heart disease and diabetes.

Researchers also found the rate of metabolic syndrome increases dramatically with age – almost half of people 60 or older in the United States have metabolic syndrome, the study found.

This is suboptimal.

We’re in the business of helping people live longer, so let’s take a look into how metabolic syndrome occurs and what you can do to move yourself away from the “at risk” category. Continue reading

The posts on this blog are for information only, and are not intended to substitute for a doctor-patient or other healthcare professional-patient relationship nor do they constitute medical or healthcare advice of any kind. Any information in these posts should not be acted upon without consideration of primary source material and professional input from one's own healthcare professionals.

Your Pre-workout Supplements: Hype or Health?

Credit: Flickr Creative Commons, Noodles and Beef

Credit: Flickr Creative Commons, Noodles and Beef

Fitness and sports nutrition trends are constantly evolving – one of the most recent trends are performance-enhancing supplements labeled as pre-workout supplements. These supplements make claims to up adrenaline, get you into “beast mode,” give you “amplified pumps,” and promise a lot of other aggressive adjectives. A few popular brands are C4, Optimum Nutrition (ON), and MuscleTech. Continue reading

The posts on this blog are for information only, and are not intended to substitute for a doctor-patient or other healthcare professional-patient relationship nor do they constitute medical or healthcare advice of any kind. Any information in these posts should not be acted upon without consideration of primary source material and professional input from one's own healthcare professionals.

5 Mobility Biohacks to Improve Your Morning Routine (+ a 4 step plan)

Roll Out Your Feet (option 1)

Courtesy of Hunter O’Brien

[This is a guest blog post contribution by Hunter O’Brien. More information on Hunter is below.]

It is not new news that exercise is an important factor of a healthy lifestyle. If you’re in some sort of physical practice, be it CrossFit, yoga, or endurance training, and   are looking to upgrade your performance, enhance your longevity, and get in touch with the physical, it could be helpful to ask what type of movement are you doing (or not doing) during the rest of your day. – After all, there are only so many HIIT trainings and Vinyasa classes you can attend. The rest of your day is dedicated to work, family, and all the other things life throws at you.

We are wired for movement, and as humans, we have evolved to move all day long. It is just as much a part of our personal biology as eating well and having healthy relationships.

While it is certainly unrealistic to consider carrying around a kettlebell in your purse, and too much “intense exercise” is detrimental to the body, that does not mean you have to save movement for the gym hour! Here are 5 movement and mobility strategies you can include in your morning routine to jump start your day. Just like a green juice or a Bulletproof coffee, you can consider them as nutrition….movement nutrition, if you will. Like many other biohacks, they will help you enhance your productivity and mental clarity, and add to the pursuit of your human potential. They might even help you improve a few biomarkers. Continue reading

The posts on this blog are for information only, and are not intended to substitute for a doctor-patient or other healthcare professional-patient relationship nor do they constitute medical or healthcare advice of any kind. Any information in these posts should not be acted upon without consideration of primary source material and professional input from one's own healthcare professionals.

4 Women’s Health Issues and How Nutrition Can Affect Them

Credit: Flickr Creative Commons, Patrick Feller

Credit: Flickr Creative Commons, Patrick Feller

[This is a guest blog post contribution by Brenna Wallace of Real Dietician. More information on Brenna is below.]

Maintaining a nutritious, healthy diet is essential for women to manage the common symptoms of the body’s natural maturation and function. When it comes to women’s health matters, menstrual cycles, pregnancy, menopause and sexual activity are inevitable cycles most women experience and, therefore, can become remarkably affected by. As a woman, how educated and aware are you of the impact diet has in relation to these normal cycles? Continue reading

The posts on this blog are for information only, and are not intended to substitute for a doctor-patient or other healthcare professional-patient relationship nor do they constitute medical or healthcare advice of any kind. Any information in these posts should not be acted upon without consideration of primary source material and professional input from one's own healthcare professionals.

2 Things You Can Do That Actually Impact Your Weight Loss Goals – And the Myth Holding You Back

rusty_clark[This is a guest blog post contribution by WellnessFX practitioner Dr. Warren Willey. More information on Dr. Willey is below.]

It’s already May. How many of you 2015 New Year’s Resolutioners are still going strong? Given the size of the crowd in the health club I go to, my guess is that the masses are diminishing. Why is that?

I am sure your efforts were good. Your schedule bowed to make room for exercise. Your diet changed in one way or another, but your goals are just not being reached as quickly as you hoped, if at all.

It’s easy to blame yourself when thinking about the M&M’s you grabbed at work, or that evening you were just too pooped to make food from your healthy menu and instead settled for something from a box. Maybe you are telling yourself you did not exercise hard enough?  Maybe you were excited at first because the scale started to change with your efforts, but then that #$%@ scale stalled or even started climbing again?

By now, you have either thrown in the towel or are seriously considering it. If you have, go grab it and get back in the fight.  If you are thinking of quitting, don’t! Let me give you some reasons you should continue, and why things have stalled. Most importantly – what you can actually do about it. Continue reading

The posts on this blog are for information only, and are not intended to substitute for a doctor-patient or other healthcare professional-patient relationship nor do they constitute medical or healthcare advice of any kind. Any information in these posts should not be acted upon without consideration of primary source material and professional input from one's own healthcare professionals.