FDA bans trans fats that raise blood pressure and increase risk of heart attacks and strokes

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today announced that foods prepared with trans fats will be phased out of the U.S. food supply over the next 3 years. Trans fats are the artificially manufactured fats and oils used for fried fast foods and in many baked goods. They  have been shown to increase the risk of heart attacks and strokes.

trans fats cause high blood pressure and heart disease

Consuming foods high in trans fats causes a build up of these fats in your body, particularly arteries and blood vessels. Excess fat in your arteries prevents your blood vessels from contracting and expanding normally, damaging the arteries, which leads to  high blood pressure. Along with increasing your risk of a heart attack or stroke, high blood pressure can also cause premature aging, sexual dysfunction, kidney failure, eye damage, blood clots and aneurysms.According to a research study of 140,000 patients, for every 2% increase in the amount of energy people get  from trans fats, their risk of heart disease increases by 23%!

FDA ban on  trans fats is a victory for heart health

This decision by the FDA to ban trans fats, although long in coming and still three years from taking full effect, is still a great victory for heart health. Some of the country’s largest restaurant chains had already recognized the dangers and cut trans fat from their menus, including McDonald’s, Taco Bell, and Dunkin’ Donuts.

What fats should you eat instead?

Eat monounsaturated (like in olive oil, avocados, nuts) and polyunsaturated fats (like in salmon, flaxseeds, walnuts, canola oil) which can reduce cholesterol levels, lower blood pressure and minimize artery blockage.

Hello Heart is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, and treatment. You should always consult with your doctor about your individual care.

1. Gazit T, Gutman M, Beatty AL. Assessment of Hypertension Control Among Adults Participating in a Mobile Technology Blood Pressure Self-management Program. JAMA Netw Open. 2021;4(10):e2127008, https://doi.org/10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2021.27008. Accessed October 19, 2022. (Some study authors are employed by Hello Heart. Because of the observational nature of the study, causal conclusions cannot be made. See additional important study limitations in the publication. This study showed that 108 participants with baseline blood pressure over 140/90 who had been enrolled in the program for 3 years and had application activity during weeks 148-163 were able to reduce their blood pressure by 21 mmHg using the Hello Heart program.) (2) Livongo Health, Inc. Form S-1 Registration Statement. https:/www.sec.gov/Archives/edgar/data/1639225/000119312519185159/d731249ds1.htm. Published June 28, 2019. Accessed October 19, 2022. (In a pilot study that lasted six weeks, individuals starting with a blood pressure of greater than 140/90 mmHg, on average, had a 10 mmHG reduction.) NOTE: This comparison is not based on a head-to-head study, and the difference in results may be due in part to different study protocols.
2. Validation Institute. 2021 Validation Report (Valid Through October 2022). https://validationinstitute.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/10/Hello_Heart-Savings-2021- Final.pdf. Published October 2021. Accessed October 19, 2022. (This analysis was commissioned by Hello Heart, which provided a summary report of self-fundedemployer client medical claims data for 203 Hello Heart users and 200 non-users from 2017-2020. Findings have not been subjected to peer review.)