The entry way to our front door looks like we decorated for the holidays with Monarch butterfly chrysalises! They are on the walls, hanging from the gutters, on the hose reel, adorning the silver palm and on the backs of the Adirondack chairs on the deck. When I first discovered the “star” caterpillar selecting our front door for it’s transformation, I savored the opportunity to be a spectator. I took this picture in the morning and with in two hours the first stages had already taken place. And by noon the chrysalis was complete. Note the detail, it appears to have gold beading around the top rim. All of this happened from that tiny caterpillar eating quality nutrition, in just the precise quantity for just the precise amount of time.
Another simple task you might think, but food manufacturers have hidden this dangerous ingredient in those processed foods you “think” you love. Why should you worry about TFA’s? Here are the facts:
- Trans fat is double trouble for your heart health
- Trans fat raises your LDL (“bad“) cholesterol and lowers your HDL (“good”) cholesterol.
- A high LDL cholesterol level in combination with a low HDL cholesterol level increases your risk of heart disease, the leading killer of men and women.
- If the fatty deposits (formed by the build up of LDL) within your arteries tear or rupture, a blood clot may form and block blood flow to a part of your heart, causing a heart attack, or to a part of your brain, causing a stroke.
- It’s also associated with a higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes.
Why is it so dangerous? Well, trans fat is formed through an industrial process that adds hydrogen to vegetable oil, which causes the oil to become solid at room temperature. The chemical make up is distorted changing the way the bonds are formed. It’s like taking your leg and putting it where your arm is supposed to be and vice versa. It’s just not right. These trans fats have to be heated to extreme temperatures before they boil. Think about this, your body temperature averages 98.6 degrees (F), your body temp will never get high enough to burn those fats out of your system. Your body can’t process the trans fats, so they build up around your heart and are deposited around your abdomen and thighs.
Here are a list of your local suspects:
The hidden name for Trans Fats is partially hydrogenated oil.
- Baked goods: cakes, cookies, pie crusts and crackers
- Ready made frosting
- Potato, corn and tortilla chips
- Microwave popcorn
- Fried foods: donuts, French fries, fried chicken
- Refrigerator dough: biscuits, cinnamon rolls, pizza dough
- Non dairy creamer
- Salad dressings
- Peanut butter
- Gravy in a jar
What’s in your wallet, I mean, cabinet? Shocking, isn’t it! And the FDA lets manufacturers put “ZERO TRANS FATS” legally on the label. In the U.S. if a food has less than 0.5 grams of trans fat in a serving, the food label can read 0 grams trans fat. Read your labels, people!
The holiday season is here! Make great selections, read your labels and feed your body with nutrient rich and fiber dense foods. Now that you know better, you have to do better!