In this issue

Jonathan Tobin: Defending the Right to a Jewish State

Heather Hale: Compliment your kids without giving them big heads

Megan Shauri: 10 ways you are ruining your own happiness

Carolyn Bigda: 8 Best Dividend Stocks for 2015

Kiplinger's Personal Finance editors: 7 Things You Didn't Know About Paying Off Student Loans

Samantha Olson: The Crucial Mistake 55% Of Parents Are Making At Their Baby's Bedtime

Densie Well, Ph.D., R.D. Open your eyes to yellow vegetables

The Kosher Gourmet by Megan Gordon With its colorful cache of purples and oranges and reds, COLLARD GREEN SLAW is a marvelous mood booster --- not to mention just downright delish
April 18, 2014

Rabbi Yonason Goldson: Clarifying one of the greatest philosophical conundrums in theology

Caroline B. Glick: The disappearance of US will

Megan Wallgren: 10 things I've learned from my teenagers

Lizette Borreli: Green Tea Boosts Brain Power, May Help Treat Dementia

John Ericson: Trying hard to be 'positive' but never succeeding? Blame Your Brain

The Kosher Gourmet by Julie Rothman Almondy, flourless torta del re (Italian king's cake), has royal roots, is simple to make, . . . but devour it because it's simply delicious

April 14, 2014

Rabbi Dr Naftali Brawer: Passover frees us from the tyranny of time

Greg Crosby: Passing Over Religion

Eric Schulzke: First degree: How America really recovered from a murder epidemic

Georgia Lee: When love is not enough: Teaching your kids about the realities of adult relationships

Cameron Huddleston: Freebies for Your Lawn and Garden

Gordon Pape: How you can tell if your financial adviser is setting you up for potential ruin

Dana Dovey: Up to 500,000 people die each year from hepatitis C-related liver disease. New Treatment Has Over 90% Success Rate

Justin Caba: Eating Watermelon Can Help Control High Blood Pressure

The Kosher Gourmet by Joshua E. London and Lou Marmon Don't dare pass over these Pesach picks for Manischewitz!

April 11, 2014

Rabbi Hillel Goldberg: Silence is much more than golden

Caroline B. Glick: Forgetting freedom at Passover

Susan Swann: How to value a child for who he is, not just what he does

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Financial Tasks You Should Tackle Right Now

Sandra Block and Lisa Gerstner: How to Profit From Your Passion

Susan Scutti: A Simple Blood Test Might Soon Diagnose Cancer

Chris Weller: Have A Slow Metabolism? Let Science Speed It Up For You

The Kosher Gourmet by Diane Rossen Worthington Whitefish Terrine: A French take on gefilte fish

April 9, 2014

Jonathan Tobin: Why Did Kerry Lie About Israeli Blame?

Samuel G. Freedman: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Jessica Ivins: A resolution 70 years later for a father's unsettling legacy of ashes from Dachau

Kim Giles: Asking for help is not weakness

Kathy Kristof and Barbara Hoch Marcus: 7 Great Growth Israeli Stocks

Matthew Mientka: How Beans, Peas, And Chickpeas Cleanse Bad Cholesterol and Lowers Risk of Heart Disease

Sabrina Bachai: 5 At-Home Treatments For Headaches

The Kosher Gourmet by Daniel Neman Have yourself a matzo ball: The secrets bubby never told you and recipes she could have never imagined

April 8, 2014

Lori Nawyn: At Your Wit's End and Back: Finding Peace

Susan B. Garland and Rachel L. Sheedy: Strategies Married Couples Can Use to Boost Benefits

David Muhlbaum: Smart Tax Deductions Non-Itemizers Can Claim

Jill Weisenberger, M.S., R.D.N., C.D.E : Before You Lose Your Mental Edge

Dana Dovey: Coffee Drinkers Rejoice! Your Cup Of Joe Can Prevent Death From Liver Disease

Chris Weller: Electric 'Thinking Cap' Puts Your Brain Power Into High Gear

The Kosher Gourmet by Marlene Parrish A gift of hazelnuts keeps giving --- for a variety of nutty recipes: Entree, side, soup, dessert

April 4, 2014

Rabbi David Gutterman: The Word for Nothing Means Everything

Charles Krauthammer: Kerry's folly, Chapter 3

Amy Peterson: A life of love: How to build lasting relationships with your children

John Ericson: Older Women: Save Your Heart, Prevent Stroke Don't Drink Diet

John Ericson: Why 50 million Americans will still have spring allergies after taking meds

Cameron Huddleston: Best and Worst Buys of April 2014

Stacy Rapacon: Great Mutual Funds for Young Investors

Sarah Boesveld: Teacher keeps promise to mail thousands of former students letters written by their past selves

The Kosher Gourmet by Sharon Thompson Anyone can make a salad, you say. But can they make a great salad? (SECRETS, TESTED TECHNIQUES + 4 RECIPES, INCLUDING DRESSINGS)

April 2, 2014

Paul Greenberg: Death and joy in the spring

Dan Barry: Should South Carolina Jews be forced to maintain this chimney built by Germans serving the Nazis?

Mayra Bitsko: Save me! An alien took over my child's personality

Frank Clayton: Get happy: 20 scientifically proven happiness activities

Susan Scutti: It's Genetic! Obesity and the 'Carb Breakdown' Gene

Lecia Bushak: Why Hand Sanitizer May Actually Harm Your Health

Stacy Rapacon: Great Funds You Can Own for $500 or Less

Cameron Huddleston: 7 Ways to Save on Home Decor

The Kosher Gourmet by Steve Petusevsky Exploring ingredients as edible-stuffed containers (TWO RECIPES + TIPS & TECHINQUES)

Jewish World Review Jan. 8, 2007 / 18 Teves, 5767

Trans fat monkey on my back

By Tom Purcell

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http://www.JewishWorldReview.com | This is hard for me to admit publicly: I'm addicted to trans fats.

My addiction started innocently enough. I loved butter. I used it generously on toast and in recipes of every kind. I loved lard, too, and smattered my skillet with it every time I made eggs or pancakes.

But the experts got to me.

They said animal-based fats were bad for me — that they'd clog my arteries and send me to an early grave. What's worse, they said, is that innocent animals were being slaughtered to feed my vile habit.

They told me to eat margarine instead, a butter substitute usually made from vegetable oil. It wasn't easy at first — the older butter substitutes didn't taste very good. But over time, margarine improved. I came to love it better than the real thing.

Now the experts are telling me not to eat margarine.

As it goes, most margarine is made from partially hydrogenated vegetable oil. Hydrogenation adds hydrogen atoms to the oil. The process makes the oil harder and less rancid and dramatically increases its shelf life.

But hydrogenation also causes a portion of the converted oil to become trans fats — nasty little molecules that have an uncanny ability to stick to artery walls. A number of respectable studies found a correlation between trans fat consumption and heart disease.

Some advocacy groups jumped on the news. They filed lawsuits demanding that fast food joints cut trans fats from their recipes. They pressured government bodies to ban their use.

The advocacy groups have been successful. Kentucky Fried Chicken, Wendy's and Starbucks vowed to reduce trans fats. New York City banned their use in restaurants within all five boroughs.

And now I'm addicted — addicted to the latest forbidden fruit to be vilified across the airwaves.

I wake nights in a cold sweat. In my slippers and pajamas, I walk to the car. I drive to the convenience store. I stand for hours near the heated rollers in the back of the room. I watch the hot dogs and mini tacos roll round and round.

And then I begin to binge.

I eat everything sitting on those hot rollers. Then I move toward the potato-chip aisle and begin eating. I keep eating until all the Pringles, Doritos and Cheetos are gone.

Then I move into the baked-goods aisle, the finest aisle in the store. I devour Twinkies and Ding Dongs and deep-fried Dolly Madison pies. I gorge myself until a sugar rush overcomes me — until I black out. I wake in a damp alley, candy wrappers about the pavement, the sun just coming up.

I need help, I know. But I'm not alone. The whole world's gone insane. Sure, trans fats are bad for us. A lot of things are that way. A sane man would eat them in moderation or avoid them altogether — or use a safe trans fat product, which a couple of scientists recently claimed to invent.

In a sane world, food providers, even restaurants, would be required to fully disclose what is in their products. Consumers should have full knowledge of what they are about to put into their bodies. And consumers should be able to freely choose whatever they want to eat.

But that is how we'd go about it in a free society. Instead, we're yielding to a small group of people who want to decide what the rest of us should eat — who want to force their will on us for our own good.

They have driven me to addiction.

The truth be told, my illness began when the same people ran Olestra out of town. Olestra was an engineered fat that the human body was unable to absorb. Sure, some people had digestive tract problems, but most of us could eat as much as we wanted and not gain a pound.

What a free and spirited country America was until then. As Jay Leno said, only a country like ours would try to invent fake fat.

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© 2007, Tom Purcell