Trans fat phase out

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SARASOTA, FL --If you look in your pantry or fridge its pretty likely that you will find something in there with trans fat as one of the ingredients. But, an announcement by the FDA is trying to change that.

"The Food and Drug Administration has made a preliminary determination that trans fats can not be considered a safe ingredients in our food," Dr. Richard Besser ABC News Chief Health and Medical Editor.

Besser says that determination means the FDA is taking steps that will  require the food industry to gradually phase out trans fats.

"What it would mean is that trans fat which are in many processed foods would no longer be able to be used and manufacturers will have to reformulate their products," added Besser.

Trans fat

So what is trans fat? And, why the need for the drastic change? Nutritionist Marco Machado, from Special Nutrition says its because of the health implications.

"Trans fat is a particular type of  unsaturated fat that isn't all that healthy for a consumer to consume," said Machado.  That's because trans fats boost a person LDL which is bad cholesterol at the same time it reduces HDL or good cholesterol.  Until now trans fats have been used in many processed foods.

"The average person's consumption of trans fats equals to about 4 to 5 pounds a year. It contributes to about 20,000 deaths simply because it does increase a person risk of cardiovascular disease," added Machado.

Which is why officials say by reducing your trans fat intake you could also reduce your chances of heart disease. But despite the benefits of trans fats reduction the FDA's move is being met with mixed feelings

"I think it's a good thing, trans fat is bad for you," said Sarasota resident Diana Clenney.

But Lorraine Shea disagrees. "I think its more interference by the U.S. government that doesn't give people credit for having any intelligence to know what they should eat and what they shouldn't eat," added Shea.

The trans fat phase out isn't a done deal. There is a two month comment period and then the FDA will decide what next.