Midday Fix: A look at the hidden trans-fat hiding in your shopping cart… And what to get instead

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Dr. Felicia Stoler

What bad for you foods are hiding in your grocery cart? Dr. Stoler will show the foods below and discuss why it’s bad for you.
Canned frosting. Just say no this unhealthy fat. Instead of buying pre-made frosting, whip up a batch made with real butter.

Margarine and most other spreads. Be careful when choosing buttery spreads. To achieve a creamy texture, some manufacturers use partially hydrogenated oils, a common transfat source.

Packaged cakes, cookies and brownies.  Many contain hydrogenated oils and other hard-to-pronounce ingredients.

Frozen pizza. Your favorite go-to dinner may also contain transfat. To find out, read the ingredient list, which is often in teeny-tiny type.

Refined sugar - sugar-sweetened cereals, juice boxes/drinks (including many of the ice teas)... 100% fruit juice, milk or water; fruit chews: Let's take a look at what exactly is in these snacks, in addition to the fruit juices and purees. An average fruit chew snack ingredient list will look something like this:  Corn syrup, sugar, modified corn starch, juice from concentrate, fruit purees, citric acid, lactic acid, natural and artificial flavors, sodium citrate, gelatin, coconut oil, carnauba wax, red 40, yellow 5 and blue 1.

Hydrogenated & trans fats.

Refined grains (vs. whole - look for FIBER) - not enough to see whole grain on the label - turn the package over & look for fiber (many people don't realize that when the buy breads/crackers/pasta)


Dr. Stoler has tips for filling your grocery cart with healthy and trans fats free options:

Here are a few of her favorite substitutions:

Out with the margarine, in with the butter. Butter lost favor when a single food scientist mistakenly thought there was an association between saturated fat and blood serum cholesterol. Food manufacturers cranked up their hydrogenation machines and trans-fat laden margarine was born. Exception: Some spreads, such as Smart Balance, is naturally transfat free.

Out with the corn oil and soybean oil, in with palm fruit oil.   Naturally trans fats-free and an excellent source of vitamin E tocotrienols which support heart and brain health.  Palm oil is also non-GMO.

Out with the corn-fed proteins, in with the grass-fed proteins. It’s now considered okay to enjoy a sensible amount of beef or poultry. Smart consumers are choosing grass-fed options because those tend to have more nutrients and fewer added hormones.

Out with the artificial egg whites, in with the fresh eggs. Some brands have naturally higher levels of ALA omega-3 fatty acids due to what the chickens are fed.

Out with the out-of-season produce, in with locally grown.  In-season fruits and vegetables tend to be fresher and have more nutrients. Plus, they usually taste better.