Cut the Trans Fats

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Hold the deep fry on Broadway and the doughnuts in the Bronx. New York City is banning trans-fats from New York restaurants. The hydrogenated oils that have crackled up millions of fried meals and put the flake in millions of flaky crusts are headed off the menu.

Restaurateurs are up in arms, charging "social engineering" and predicting doom. But doctors say trans-fats are the champ at clogging American hearts. And New York is saying "no more, it's poison."

Lead paint is out. Smoking in bars is out. And now, trans-fats are headed out, too. From Chicago to Louisville and beyond, other cities may follow.

This hour On Point: trans-fats get the boot in New York City.

Quotes from the Show:

"It's not going to be much of a problem with us at Stage Deli [to comply with the ban]. ... In the long run, it will probably help our customers."

"We first have to look at our purveyors, the people who bring the food to our restaurants." Steve Auerbach

"Granola oil seems to be a good alternative. ... I don't see a major problem with the change in flavor." Steve Auerbach

"This is a pretty easy change to make for the food industry. It shouldn't affect the cost or taste of food for the consumers." Kelly Brownell

"I don't think anybody in their right mind would say that Americans shouldn't change their diet." Kelly Brownell

"The government is always involved with what we eat ... but almost always to the favor of the food industry." Kelly Brownell

"We have a problem with regulation versus education. ... A lot of people are objecting to the fact that the government is doing this in an Orwellian or nannyism way." Charles Hunt


Fred Mogul, health reporter for WNYC

Steve Auerbach, owner of the Stage Deli in New York City

Kelly Brownell, Director of Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity and Professor of Psychology, Epidemiology and Public Health at Yale University

Charles Hunt, Executive Vice President of the New York City Chapters of the New York State Restaurant Association

Ellis Henican, columnist for Newsday

This program aired on December 6, 2006.


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