Similar to saturated fat, trans fat increases blood cholesterol levels. Trans fats are produced via hydrogenation, a process to solidify liquid oil as solid fat.
In human body trans fats contribute clogging arteries, similar to saturated fats or animal fats, which is a sign of heart disease increaseing the risk of both heart attack and stroke. The complete route is, inside human body, trans fats raising the level of low-density lipoprotein (LDL) (“bad” cholesterol levels), resulting in the buildup of fatty plaque in arteries.
Science studies show that trans fats increase LDL cholesterol levels is outstanding and very strong. All evidence is pointing in the same direction. In the Nurse’s Health Study, women who consumed the greatest amount of trans fats in their diet had a 50% higher risk of heart attack compared to women who consumed the least. Some researchers suspect that trans fats also increase blood levels of two other artery-clogging compounds — a fat-protein particle called lipoprotein(a) and blood fats called triglycerides.
Researchers at the Harvard School of Public Health in Boston suggest that replacing trans fats in the diet with polyunsaturated fats (such as vegetable oils, salmon, etc.) can reduce diabetes risk by as much as 40%.
Trans fatty acids (TFAs), insulin resistance, and type 2 diabetes
In Type 2 diabetes there is a complex etiology involving many interactions between genetic and environmental factors. Insulin resistance of the peripheral tissues is essential to the development of the disease. Insulin resistance may be partly modified by the specific types of dietary fatty acids. TFAs take on similar properties as saturated fats, and appear to be more atherogenic 更多動脈粥樣硬化. High intakes of saturated fats may push forward insulin resistance because interfere with insulin receptors. Therefore high intakes of TFAs would have similar/stronger effects.
Sources of trans fat include:
- Processed foods like snacks (crackers and chips) and baked goods (muffins, cookies and cakes) with hydrogenated oil or partially hydrogenated oil
- Some fast food items such as french fries
- Stick margarine