Spotting Hidden Trans Fats on Ingredient Labels
Today’s “Ask the Nutrition Consultant” question comes from Michelle!
Q: Some of my holiday recipes call for shortening. I was looking at Crisco in the store and saw that even though it says “0g Trans Fat Per Serving” that the ingredient list has fully hydrogenated palm oil as the second ingredient. I learned in your Eating for Health® class to watch out for this! Anything with “hydrogenated” whether partially or fully IS a trans fat! Is there an alternative to Crisco I could use in recipes?
A: Great job reading labels, Michelle! The FDA allows any product with less than 0.5 grams trans fat per serving to list zero grams trans fat in its nutrition facts. While it may be a very small amount of trans fat in one serving, most of us are probably consuming more than one serving, especially if we are consuming multiple foods or products with these hydrogenated fats in them. There is no safe level of trans fat ingestion, and they are damaging to the body contributing to cardiovascular disease, inflammation, obesity, and cancer.
When I bake and need a shortening I use Spectrum Culinary Organic All Vegetable Shortening. It contains expeller pressed organic palm fruit oil and it is NOT hydrogenated. Palm oil is a medium chain saturated fat that is solid at room temperature, and heat and light stable.
*This is not a paid or sponsored post and I am receiving no compensation for recommending Spectrum Shortening