Hydrogenation is a chemical process that turns liquid food oils into solid fats at room temperature such as shortening. The process creates trans fatty acids.
Trans fatty acids are found in some margarines, fried foods, processed baked goods, etc. These are man-made trans fatty acids. Trans fatty acids are also found in small amounts in animal products such as butter, lard, cream, etc.
Trans fatty acids can raise blood cholesterol levels. They can raise your LDL (“bad”) cholesterol and lower your HDL (“good”) cholesterol.
To reduce your intake of trans fatty acids, choose:
• 100% whole-wheat grain products such as breads and pasta
• Vegetables and fruits (eat the skin, where practical)
• Milk products such as skim or 1% milk, yogurt and part-skim milk cheese
• Lean meats, chicken (no skin), fish, beans, eggs and peanut butter
• Avoid fried and deep-fried foods, cookies, pies, cakes and doughnuts