Second Session Study Guide 3

Second Session Study Guide

Lesson Three

(Man Made Fats)


Man made fats

There are three man made fats: hydrogenated, trans fats and interesterified. You cannot use poly-unsaturated oils to cook with (like corn oil) because they break down easily and will burn. That’s why our grandmothers used lard and bacon grease. But as we now know this was not a good idea.


The food companies began hydrogenating oils because hydrogenation essentially turns a vegetable oil, like corn oil, into saturated fat that will remain solid at room temperature. If you hydrogenate corn oil you get margarine. If you continue to hydrogenate it you get Crisco. These hydrogenated oils are chemically similar to lard and act the same way in our bodies. That means they increase cholesterol levels. The ingredients to avoid are: partially hydrogenated oils, margarine and shortening.


Trans fats are a by-product of hydrogenation. They raise cholesterol and triglyceride levels and increase the risk of some diseases. The National Academy of Sciences (NAS) says there is “no safe limit” for trans fats. The best way to avoid these dangerous oils is to avoid the source of them. 90% of trans fats are from hydrogenated oils and most of that is from junk foods.


Interesterified fats are produced by a process similar to hydrogenation but trans fats are not produced. However, these fats may raise LDL and blood sugar. The ingredients to avoid are: modified palm oil, modified soybean oil, fully hydrogenated coconut oil.


Lesson Three Q and A:

  1. What are the three man made fats?
  2. Why do food companies hydrogenate oils?
  3. What are the “foods” that we should avoid on an ingredient list?
  4. What is the effect of these fats in our bodies?


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