Saturday, July 13, 2024
HomeMalawiHealthWHO calls for action to totally eliminate trans fat, ‘a toxic chemical...

WHO calls for action to totally eliminate trans fat, ‘a toxic chemical that kills’

Industrially produced trans fat – commonly found in packaged foods, baked goods, cooking oils and spreads – is responsible for up to 500,000 premature deaths from coronary heart disease each year, the UN agency said

WHO has released a status report that follows up on its 2018 call for the substance to be totally eliminated from all foods by this year. 

Huge health risks 

Since then, 43 countries have implemented best-practice policies for tackling trans fat, with some 2.8 million people now protected, a nearly six-fold increase. However, the elimination goal currently remains unattainable. 

“Trans fat has no known benefit, and huge health risks that incur huge costs for health systems,” said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the WHO Director-General. 

“By contrast, eliminating trans fat is cost effective and has enormous benefits for health. Put simply, trans fat is a toxic chemical that kills, and should have no place in food. It’s time to get rid of it once and for all.” 

Limits and bans 

Best-practices policies towards this goal follow specific criteria established by WHO and limit industrially produced trans fat in all settings. 

Alternatives include limiting trans fat to two grammes per 100 grammes of total fat in all foods, and mandatory national bans on the production or use of partially hydrogenated oils – a major source of trans fat – as an ingredient in foods. 

Currently, nine of the 16 countries with the highest estimated proportion of coronary heart disease deaths caused by trans fat intake do not have a best-practice policy.  

They are Australia, Azerbaijan, Bhutan, Ecuador, Egypt, Iran, Nepal, Pakistan and the Republic of Korea. 

Nations adopting policies 

While most policies have so far been implemented in richer nations, largely in the Americas and in Europe, WHO said an increasing number of middle-income countries are implementing or adopting policies, including Argentina, Bangladesh, India, Paraguay, the Philippines and Ukraine.  

Other countries are considering taking action this year, such as Mexico, Nigeria and Sri Lanka. To date, no low-income countries have adopted a best-practice policy on trans fat elimination. 

A ‘preventable tragedy’ 

The annual status report was published by WHO in collaboration with Resolve to Save Lives, a not-for-profit organization that supports action towards eliminating industrially produced trans fat from national food supplies. 

Dr Tom Frieden, President and CEO of Resolve to Save Live, warned that progress is at risk of stalling. 

“Every government can stop these preventable deaths by passing a best-practice policy now. The days of trans fat killing people are numbered – but governments must act to end this preventable tragedy.” 

Areas for action 

This year, WHO recommends that countries focus on adopting best-practice policy, in addition to monitoring and surveillance, healthy oil replacements and advocacy.  

The UN agency has developed guidance to help governments make rapid advances in these four areas. 

Meanwhile, food manufacturers are encouraged to eliminate industrially produced trans fat from their products, in line with commitment made by the International Food and Beverage Alliance (IFBA).

Major suppliers of oils and fats also are asked to remove industrially produced trans fat from products sold to food manufacturers globally. 

UN Health News

Maravi Post Reporter
Maravi Post Reporterhttps://www.maravipost.com/
Op-Ed Columnists, Opinion contributors and one submissions are posted under this Author. In our By-lines we still give Credit to the right Author. However we stand by all reports posted by Maravi Post Reporter.
RELATED ARTICLES
- Advertisment -

Most Popular

Recent Comments

Sylvester Movette zunda on Mali wedding attack kills 21
James Hastings Chidule on Malawi’ fistula recovery at 86%
WELLINGTON WITMAN MOSELIJAH LUNDUKA on The history of Ngoni Maseko in Malawi
Lisa Frank on Home
azw3 on Home
Define Regtech on Home
Tobias Kunkumbira on Malawi to roll out Typhoid vaccine
arena plus nba standings 2022 to 2023 ph on Home
David on Home
마산출장 on Home
Cristina Thomas on Home
Alicia Alvarado on Home
The History of online Casinos – Agora Poker – hao029 on The History of online Casinos
Five factors that will determine #NigeriaDecides2023 - NEWSCABAL on Leadership Is Difficult Because Governance Is Very Stubborn, By Owei Lakemfa
Asal Usul Texas Holdem Poker – Agora Poker – hao029 on The Origins of Texas Holdem Poker
Malawi has asked Mike Tyson to be its cannabis ambassador - Techio on Malawi lawmaker Chomanika against Mike Tyson’s appointment as Cannabis Brand Ambassador over sex offence
Finley Mbella on Brand Chakwera leaks Part 1
Maria Eduarda Bernardo on The 2021 Guide to Trading Forex Online
Atsogo Kemso, Political Foot Soldier on Why MCP and UTM Alliance Will Fail
Em. Prof. Willem Van Cotthem - Ghent University, Belgium on Malawi army, National bank cover Chilumba barrack with trees
Christopher Murdock on Why dating older woman is dangerous?
Samantha The Hammer on Why dating older woman is dangerous?
Mike on