FDA aims to phase out trans fats from food

November 26, 2015 - 0:0

TEHRAN — Iran’s Food and Drug Administration (FDA) is taking steps toward making food supplies free from trans fats, said the FDA director Rasoul Dinarvand.

“We will entirely remove trans fats from food supplies as it is proved to be harmful to human beings,” Dinarvand told the ISNA news agency.

The amount of trans fats used industrially is 10 percent and the amount used in cooking oils is five percent, he explained.

“We ought to reduce this amount step by step to less than five and two percent for industrial use and cooking respectively within one to two years,” he noted.

“Next, we’ll minimize this amount to near zero and then zero for both industrial use and cooking.” “The whole process takes 10 years as both the public taste and the food manufacturers require to become compatible to it,” he said.

Trans fats or trans-fatty acids are a type of unsaturated fats that are uncommon in nature but became commonly produced industrially from vegetable fats. Trans-fat has been shown to consistently be associated with risk of coronary heart disease, the worldwide leading cause of death.

Iranian’s diet is high in salt which needs to be reformed in a 10-year period, Dinarvand said, adding that the amount of sugar in products such as fizzy drinks and ice creams will be refined as well.

Elsewhere in his remarks, he touched on the details of the national document on non-communicable diseases and said that “provision of drugs for patients with diabetes and coronary heart diseases is our top priority as such diseases will soon enter critical stages if we fail to take care of them properly.”

For instance, a diabetic patient’s costs are about $100 a year while the costs can reach up to $2,000 in case the patient develops kidney disease, he warned.

He reiterated that “such patients should get prompt treatments to avoid further complications.”