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Can You Name 3 Trans Fat Foods?

Survey Shows 73% Know Trans Fats Are Bad, but Just 21% Can Name 3 Trans Fat Foods

Where to Find Trans Fats

Where are trans fats?

Here's a list of foods typically high in trans fats:

  • French fries
  • Doughnuts
  • Pastries (also high in saturated fats)
  • Hard margarine
  • Vegetable shortening
  • Cookies (also high in saturated fats)
  • Crackers

While many restaurants and manufacturers have started making trans-fat-free versions of these foods, this still doesn't make them heart healthy.

Avoiding manufactured foods high in trans fats is essential, Eckel says, as we get plenty of trans fats from natural foods.

"Twenty percent of trans fat consumption comes from natural foods, not oils or solid spreads modified by the food industry to enhance shelf life or enhance palatability," he says. "And now we are avoiding trans fats in manufactured food products, if we eat beef or dairy we probably are consuming most of our trans fats through natural foods."

Here's a list of foods typically high in saturated fats:

  • Lard
  • Butter
  • Fatty beef (also naturally contain some trans fat)
  • Pastries (also high in trans fat)
  • Cookies (also high in trans fat)
  • Dairy products (also naturally contain some trans fat)
  • Whole milk

How to Eat Fewer Fats

Want to eat fewer fats? Here's advice that really works:

  • Don't deny yourself today only to binge tomorrow. Enjoy fatty foods in moderation.
  • To be moderate, fill up on healthy foods.

"People are getting sick of this negative message of what not to have," Bonci says. "Let's focus instead on foods we love to eat."

When you're filling your plate, Bonci says, start with the foods you know are good for you.

"If half of the plate is red, yellow, orange, or green -- and it is not M&Ms -- that's cool," she says. "And if another third of the plate is lean plant or animal protein. And if the remainder of the plate is grain, that's not fat either. But even if you decide at that point to have french fries or a pastry -- well, there's not much more room on the plate, so you're not getting an overwhelming dose of fat."

If you want a doughnut, Bonci tells her football players, go buy a doughnut, not a box. Gotta have chips? Get a tiny bag, not a family-sized bag.

Not everyone has this much self-control, Dansinger says. He should know, as the people he advises on The Biggest Loser have serious self-control issues.

The answer for those of use who tend to be immoderate is "voluntary submission" to someone -- a trainer, for example, or a doctor -- who will hold our feet to the fire.

"If adherence to a plan is the key, the key to adherence is voluntary submission," Dansinger says. "I let my patients know there is a certain set of rules: keeping a food record, following a particular food strategy, and exercising. The principle of being accountable to an outside authority has been a key to my success."

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