A Pew Research poll released Saturday shows that 52% of adults oppose a ban on trans fats. Only 44% approve.
Yesterday, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said hydrogenated oils, the source of trans fats, are no longer “generally recognized as safe.” Dr. Margaret A. Hamburg, commissioner of the FDA, said the new rules requiring companies to prove scientifically trans fats are safe to eat could prevent 20,000 U.S. heart attacks and 7,000 deaths from heart disease each year.
Introduced about 30 years ago, artificial trans fats are created when liquid oil is treated with hydrogen gas and made into a solid. It’s used for frying and baking, and in products such as margarine as a cheaper fat than butter.
Although the survey was conducted before the FDA announcement, a number of U.S. cities have put trans fat restrictions in place.