Food companies around the globe make use of hydrogenated oil to increase the shelf life of their products and for saving costs as well. Hydrogenation is a process carried out in a fatty acid hydrogenation plant through which liquid unsaturated fats are converted into a solid fat by adding a certain amount of hydrogen to them. A negative side of this process is that it generates trans fat in the finally obtained solid fat which is not considered good for human health.
There are mainly two categories of hydrogenated oils – fully hydrogenated and partially hydrogenated. The use of partially hydrogenated oil has completely been banned in many countries across the globe including the United States. But unfortunately, there is still no dearth of food companies that use partially hydrogenated oil to serve the following purposes:
- To save huge on the manufacturing cost
- To extend the shelf life of their products
- To add texture and change appearance of the products
- To increase the stability of the products.
Although, it is very difficult to spot partially hydrogenated oil processed in a fatty acid hydrogenation plant, there are always ways to avoid it. This article talks about the same ways:
1. Gather information about the common culprits
Food items that are rich in saturated fats always contain a robust amount of partially hydrogenated oils. Some of them include the following:
- All types of packaged snacks
- Vegetable shortening
- Ready-to-use dough
- All types of deep-fried foods
- Baked foods, particularly the premade versions
- Coffee creamers including both dairy and nondairy.
2. Check out labels carefully
Since partially hydrogenated oil processed in a sophisticated fatty acid hydrogenation plant contains a profuse amount of trans fats, it’s always better to avoid them. According to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA), if a product is labeled by the manufacturer as having 0.5 grams per serving or less trans fat, it cannot be considered trans-fat-free. Therefore, while buying food items you must go through the label.
3. Always use vegetable oils for cooking
Shortening and margarine are very popular and easy to cook with but they contain a sufficient amount of partially hydrogenated oil processed in a sophisticated fatty acid hydrogenation plant. During the hardening of oil, trans fat is generated that is the primary reason behind a large number of health problems. Hence, you should always opt for plant-based oils that include safflower, olive, or avocado. According to a recently concluded study, vegetable oils such as mustard and canola are completely trans fat-free and can help you keep your glucose levels under control and also can help decrease inflammation.
Mectech is one of the leading companies in India manufacturing and supplying fatty acid hydrogenation plant and facilities for the hardening of oil. The focus of innovation on technology by Mectech is based completely on the principles of providing its customers' projects with advanced technologies that ensure low cost of production, increased productivity, value addition, and better quality of the product. For complete information about all other products offered by the company, one can visit its website.
Published by Mectech