India on road to be trans-fat free by 2022

• Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan said that due to the unprecedented challenges faced by the world on account of the coronavirus pandemic, there has been a renewed focus on food, nutrition, health, immunity and sustainability.

Key highlights:

• At present, Indian regulation limits the amount of Trans-fat in food to 5%. Food Safety and
Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) is committed to reducing it to less than 2% by the year 2022 in a phased manner.

• In 2018, WHO released REPLACE, a step-by-step guide for the elimination of industrially-produced trans-fatty acids from the global food supply by 2023.

About trans-fat:

• It is a food toxin present in Partially Hydrogenated Vegetable Oils, baked and fried foods. It is a major contributor to the rise in non-communicable diseases in India.

It is of Two types:

• Naturally-occurring trans fats: produced in the gut of some animals and foods made from animals (e.g., milk and meat products).

• Artificial trans fats (or trans fatty acids): created in an industrial process that adds hydrogen to liquid vegetable oils to make them more solid and to increase the shelf life of foods. They help to increase the shelf life of oils and foods and stabilise their flavours.

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Mains Paper 2: Health

Prelims level: Trans-fat

Mains level: Read the newsfeed

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