We probably all remember about 10 years back when it came out that there was this ‘other’ fat in our food called trans fat. According to this article, back in 1999 the Food and Drug Administration first proposed the idea of requiring that manufacturers post trans fat amounts on their Nutrition Facts labels, and in 2006 that became effective.
What happened was that manufacturers scrambled to change their recipes so that, when it was time to have to post trans fats on their labeling, they could proudly show that their product(s) had none of the deadly fat (even though certain products definitely did have trans fats). And as a side note, trans fats are created in the hydrogenation process when hydrogen is added to vegetable oil. The hydrogenation process helps add longer shelf life, and also helps add fat to arteries too.
The thing is, the article also states that trans fats can still be found in several foods…stuff like crackers, microwave popcorn, coffee creamers, packaged pastries, etc. The article states at the end that even if a food claims to have 0 grams of trans fat, manufacturers can say so if the product has less than 0.5 grams. And if partially hydrogenated oil is in the ingredients, there is likely still a small amount of trans fat in there. Thankfully, the FDA is in the process of determining whether or not partially hydrogenated oils are safe, and if not, how to phase them out of our food.
My opinion is that it is best to avoid all hydrogenated (partially or fully) oil products. If you avoid packaged foods and eat mostly real food (fresh meats, fruits, vegetables, etc.), aside from trace amounts in meat and milk, you should do just fine.