Written by Mertice Ho

By 2023 the World Health Organisation (WHO) wants to eliminate the use of trans fats, the unhealthy oil blamed for 72 percent of the 54.7 million estimated non-communicable deaths worldwide every year, many before the age of 70. Trans fats are industrially produced edible oil often found in fried foods, it is a partially hydrogenated cooking oil often used by street vendors and restaurants. WHO suggests that trans fats be replaced by healthier polyunsaturated fats, such as fish, canola and olive oils – after all, there is no difference in taste.

Many developed countries such as Denmark, Switzerland, Canada, Britain and the United States, have already banned trans fats. The problem lies in developing countries, especially in South Asia, where trans fats containing oil is much cheaper to use and has a longer shelf life. While Thailand is expected to issue a ban soon, other places like India virtually have no regulations on this silent slow killer.

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