NYC Trans Fat Ban Is Working
New York City’s ban on trans fats in restaurant chains, enacted in 2006 and put into place in 2007, appears to be working. An analysis of lunchtime receipts from 168 Manhattan fast-food eateries finds a sharp drop in trans-fat consumption, from 2.91 grams before the ban to 0.51 grams in 2009. That 2.4-gram average decrease represents about 22 fewer calories from trans fat per meal. Publishing their findings in Annals of Internal Medicine, researchers pointed out that studies have linked 40 daily calories from trans fat to a 23% greater risk of heart disease. Although saturated-fat intake rose after the ban, up 0.55 grams, that increase was substantially less than the drop in trans fats. Hamburger chains, Mexican eateries and fried-chicken restaurants showed the greatest post-ban decline in trans fat consumption. The study compared nutritional data and food purchases on 6,969 lunch purchases in 2007 with 7,885 lunches in 2009.