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World Health Or­ga­ni­za­tion (WHO) has re­leased RE­PLACE, a step-by-step guide for the elim­i­na­tion of in­dus­tri­ally pro­duced trans-fatty acids from the global food sup­ply. WHO has es­ti­mated that ev­ery sin­gle year trans-fat in­take leads to more than 500,000 deaths of peo­ple from car­dio­vas­cu­lar dis­ease. Elim­i­nat­ing trans-fat is key to pro­tect­ing health and sav­ing lives.

In­dus­tri­ally pro­duced trans-fats are con­tained in hard­ened veg­etable fats, which in­clude mar­garine and ghee, and are of­ten pre­sent in snack food, baked foods and fried foods. Man­u­fac­tur­ers of­ten use them to in­crease the shelf life. But health­ier al­ter­na­tives can be used that will not af­fect taste or cost of food.

“WHO calls on gov­ern­ments to use the RE­PLACE ac­tion pack­age to elim­i­nate in­dus­tri­ally-pro­duced trans-fatty acids from the food sup­ply,” said WHO Di­rec­tor-Gen­eral Dr Te­dros Ad­hanom Ghe­breye­sus, as stated in the press re­lease by WHO. “Im­ple­ment­ing the six strate­gic ac­tions in the RE­PLACE pack­age will help achieve the elim­i­na­tion of trans-fat, and rep­re­sent a ma­jor vic­tory in the global fight against car­dio­vas­cu­lar dis­ease.”

RE­PLACE pro­vides six strate­gic ac­tions to en­sure the prompt, com­plete and sus­tained elim­i­na­tion of in­dus­tri­ally-pro­duced trans-fats from the food sup­ply. This is what RE­PLACE means: • Re­view di­etary sources of in­dus­tri­ally pro­duced trans-fats and the land­scape for re­quired pol­icy change • Pro­mote the re­place­ment of in­dus­tri­ally pro­duced trans-fats with health­ier fats and oils • Leg­is­late or en­act reg­u­la­tory ac­tions to elim­i­nate in­dus­tri­ally pro­duced trans-fats • As­sess and mon­i­tor trans-fats con­tent in the food sup­ply and changes in trans-fat con­sump­tion in the

pop­u­la­tion • Cre­ate aware­ness of the neg­a­tive health im­pact of trans-fats among pol­i­cy­mak­ers, pro­duc­ers, sup­pli­ers

and the pub­lic • En­force com­pli­ance with poli­cies and reg­u­la­tions

Ac­cord­ing to WHO, sev­eral high-in­come coun­tries have vir­tu­ally elim­i­nated in­dus­trial lypro­duced trans-fats through legally im­posed lim­its on the amount that can be con­tained in pack­aged foods. Some gov­ern­ments have im­ple­mented na­tion­wide bans of par­tially hy­dro­genated oils, the main source of in­dus­tri­ally pro­duced trans-fats. Ac­tion is re­quired in low- and mid­dle-in­come coun­tries, where con­trols of use of in­dus­tri­ally pro­duced trans-fats are of­ten weaker, to en­sure that the ben­e­fits are felt equally around the world.

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