Local restaurant not affected by FDA ban on trans fats - WCIV-TV | ABC News 4 - Charleston News, Sports, Weather

Local restaurant not affected by FDA ban on trans fats

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By Gregory Woods

NORTH CHARLESTON, S.C. (WCIV) -- For years, trans fats have been the key ingredients used to enhance flavor, create a better texture and extend the shelf life of processed foods such as french fries, chips and baked goods.  

But soon, the ingredients will be gone for good.

The Food and Drug Administration announced Thursday it would ban artificial trans fats, calling them a threat to public health. The administration is requiring the food industry to phase them out.

Emily Funcik, a clinical dietitian at Roper St. Francis Hospital, said the FDA ban is a step in the right direction to help people lead healthier lives.

"The FDA estimates approximately 20,000 heart attacks per year can be prevented by eliminating trans fat from our diet," she said. "Close to 7,000 deaths from cardiovascular disease can be prevented each year also."

Angelica Mateo manages Merengue, a local Dominican restaurant in North Charleston. She said she supports the ban.

"It's a great thing because there is already enough stuff going on with fast food restaurants," said Angelica Mateo.

Mateo said the ban will not affect her restaurant because the food they serve is all made from scratch.

"Most of the vegetables that we use we grow in my parents backyard like squash and sweet potatoes," she said. "We don't freeze anything over night. Most of our stuff is made on the spot daily."

It is measures like this that customers said keep them supporting the restaurant.

"In a small restaurant like Merengue. I know they are making things from scratch they're making fresh-baked things," said Lynne Hinkey. "So it's not such a concern as with processed foods or fast foods."

The FDA has not set a deadline for when trans fats will be eliminated from the food industry.


  • Greg Woods

    Email: gwoods@abcnews4.com Reporter Profile

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