A new study has found that people who have high content of Trans-fat in blood have 50-75% more risk of developing Alzheimer’s or dementia. 1600 men and women from Japan were studied for a period of 10 years. Blood test for finding the levels of Trans-fat in their blood was carried out at the beginning of study and researchers analyzed their diets.
Other factors which affect dementia risk like smoking, diabetes and high pressure were adjusted by the researchers. It was found that people with two highest Trans-fat levels were at 52% and at 74% more risk of developing dementia compared to people who had lowest levels. Dr. Richard Isaacson, Alzheimer’s Prevention Clinic’s director at Weill Cornell Medicine, New York said that instead of dietary questionnaires as done in traditional methods, blood markers for Trans-fat levels were used by the study.
Trans-fats are found naturally in small quantities in some dairy and meat products but their highest levels are found in man-made versions. Artificial trans-fats are known as Trans-fatty acids and are produced by industrialized process wherein hydrogen is added to vegetable oils in their liquid state to make them solid. Trans-fats are loved by the food industry because they are inexpensive to produce, last long and also add great texture and taste to the food.
Trans-fats are mainly found in fried food items, frozen pizza, coffee creamer, cakes, cookies, pie crusts, biscuits, crackers and other processed foods. It was found in the study that sweet pastries had the highest levels of Trans-fats. Margarine was next in the list. Trans fats was banned by FDA in the year 2015 after the connection between trans fats and increased levels of bad cholesterol or LDL along with reduced good cholesterol or HDL was found.
Dr. Toshiharu Ninomiya, the study author said that small quantities of Trans-fats allowed in the food items will add up when people have more servings of those foods. Isaacson said that people who are at risk should pay attention to the nutrition labels. He said that the lesser the ingredients the better it is and asked people to go for whole and natural food rather than processed food.