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WRT trans fats, the FDA should ...

Displaying poll results.
Ban 'em outright
  7189 votes / 39%
Regulate with a heavy hand, but not ban.
  2092 votes / 11%
Regulate moderately; labels & limits.
  2113 votes / 11%
Try to nix egregious or unlabeled use.
  1712 votes / 9%
Stay out of my cabinet and grocery store!
  2773 votes / 15%
Die in a Twinkie fire!
  2434 votes / 13%
18313 total votes.
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  • Don't complain about lack of options. You've got to pick a few when you do multiple choice. Those are the breaks.
  • Feel free to suggest poll ideas if you're feeling creative. I'd strongly suggest reading the past polls first.
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WRT trans fats, the FDA should ...

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  • Re:Outright bans (Score:3, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday November 07, 2013 @06:44PM (#45361827)

    and the ban of DDT has been linked to more deaths than all modern wards combined.

    And then it was demonstrated that the issues with DDt were so blatantly overstated that even the World health organization has now lifted its ban on DDT for use to control malaria.

  • by Ambassador Kosh (18352) on Thursday November 07, 2013 @06:45PM (#45361847)

    Your body has facilities in it to process burning plant matter. To remove a lot of what it does. It is stupid to do it but our evolution does give us some protection against it. However we don't have adaptations to deal with those modern trans-fats. I am only talking about the artificial ones, not the natural ones. We have enzymes designed to break trans-fat linkages at specific points in a chain, they ONLY work at those specific points. So natural trans-fats we don't have a problem with. The artificial ones would be okay if they had their cross links at the same location but they don't. As a result we can't process them correctly and that leads to a lot of problems.

    This is not in any way like smoking. Good on the FDA for regulating them.

  • by Capt.DrumkenBum (1173011) on Thursday November 07, 2013 @06:48PM (#45361869)
    I am lactose intolerant you insensitive clod.
  • by Eskarel (565631) on Thursday November 07, 2013 @09:16PM (#45363421)

    This is actually reasonably sensible. If the reason that trans fat is used is because it's substantially cheaper than the alternatives then taxing trans fat will cause the free market to eliminate it on its own. I know the idea of manipulating the market in order to achieve a goal is anathema to free market fundamentalists, but it actually really does work. It also allows for appropriate exceptions since, where trans fat isn't being used simply because it's cheap it will still make financial sense to do it.

    The issue which arises from these plans is usually cost of compliance, but the compliance cost difference between an outright ban and taxation probably isn't dramatic.

  • by Dialecticus (1433989) on Thursday November 07, 2013 @09:33PM (#45363631)

    When you ban something, something else will inevitably replace it, and it may end up being worse than what you banned. What I've noticed is that when "partially hydrogenated" (i.e. trans-fats) vanishes from ingredients lists, it's usually replaced by "TBHQ", which is a preservative used to prevent fats from oxidizing. Partially hydrogenated fats are less prone to oxidizing, so when you remove that option they have to replace it with something else, and TBHQ seems to be the cheapest option.

    The problem is that TBHQ has its own down sides. Five grams of it is allegedly lethal, and some people can't tolerate even small amounts of it. I am one of them. When I eat even a small amount of food with TBHQ in it, I get panic attacks or worse. In one case my pulse went up to around 240. Since then I've had to be very careful to avoid anything with TBHQ in it, but all these anti-trans-fat extremists pushing regulations for my health don't take into account that they may be killing me by taking away the foods I can eat without winding up in an emergency room.

    In short, people know their own situation better than central planners do, and they may have personal issues that make the lack of trans-fats even worse than the presence of trans-fats. Regulating them institutes a form of tyranny of the majority. [wikipedia.org] It's analogous to forcing someone with a peanut allergy to eat peanuts because they're so nutritious and because most people aren't allergic. Don't do that. Instead, just label foods accurately and let people make their own decisions.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday November 08, 2013 @02:03PM (#45370183)

    O-Chem crash course: Fully hydrogenated fats ("saturated") have no C-C double bonds and therefore are neither trans nor cis. But partially hydrogenated fats ("unsaturated," with C-C double bonds) can either be trans or cis (since rotation around the double bond is hindered, substituents around double bonds can be arranged two different ways: trans and cis). Partially hydrogenated cis fats occur pretty regularly in nature, as do fully hydrogenated fats. But partially hydrogenated trans fats are actually pretty uncommon in nature, so our bodies have a tough time metabolizing them.

  • by grimm26 (1325643) on Friday November 08, 2013 @03:16PM (#45371135)
    uh, butter has 0 trans fat.
  • by _Sharp'r_ (649297) <sharper AT booksunderreview DOT com> on Saturday November 09, 2013 @07:27PM (#45379543) Homepage Journal

    It's not just you. I actively avoid such products. I assume that they're either lying, or using inferior materials or processes, or charging more for what they use in order to make the claim, otherwise their competitors would be using the same materials and/or processes.

    Another thing to avoid is energy star appliances. They take dish washers and clothes dryers, for example, and get them a better rating by taking much longer to clean or dry things [consumerreports.org]. The end result is a product that doesn't work as well. For example, 2-3 hour dishwasher cycles are becoming the norm.

Serving coffee on aircraft causes turbulence.

 



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