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Partially Hydrogenated Oils



Please take note. This article is about a simple substance that has literally caused an epidemic of obesity and other health problems to the masses of people who consume processed foods: partially hydrogenated oil. Scientists and nutritionists alike label this chemically enhanced ingredient a poison, and by true definition of the word; it is.

Partially hydrogenated oils are naturally occurring oils that are altered by an unnatural process. Hydrogenation is the action of passing hydrogen bubbles through oils during extreme temperatures of heat treatment which range from 500 and 1,000 degrees under several atmospheres of pressure. At this point the oil is infiltrated with some sort of catalyst (one of a handful of metals) and hydrogen bubbles are passed through for hours. Common catalysts are nickel, platinum, or even aluminum. This process changes the molecular structure of the oils and causes a state of semi-solid in room temperature, instead of the normal liquid consistency. The consistency thickens along with the density of the oil, leaving it to be a very marketable product that is far cheaper than butter and creates a desirable texture when cooking. The refinement process after the hydrogenation is essentially put into place to eliminate the rancid odor of the oil after being processed. Figure that without the refinement in the final stages, you would literally be consuming a form far worse than rancid butter. Hydrogenation also causes a naturally spoilable food product to gain serious shelf life, alluding to the fact that it has become so processed it is more like a synthetic version of food, and is ultimately very bad for you; containing high levels of Trans Fats (the worst kind).

Partially hydrogenated oils are one of the worst ingredients one can consume. In fact, they are only one molecule away from plastic. If this doesn’t sound an alarm, I don’t know what will. The body is not equipped to process such a foreign agent, and instead the chemical becomes trapped within the cell walls. On the other hand, essential fatty acids (EFAs) are literally essential to absolutely every bodily function including: brain cell function; glandular function and immune system operation; cell wall functions such as passing oxygen to the cell, passing nutrients to the cell, and keeping foreign bodies out of the cell; digestive tract operation; etc. Trans fats take the place of essential fatty acids, clinging to the cell walls so that the essential fatty acids are unable to perform their vital functions. Taking the place of a natural substance that performs a critical function defines the term poison. This substitution also makes you fat. Considering that your body requires the essential fatty acids but will not be receiving them since the trans fats take the place of them, your body will require you to continue eating until it is satisfied with the levels of EFA it requires in order to properly function. Taking in all that additional storage of fat is detrimental and will show unwanted results quickly. Plus, considering the cellulose type makeup, it is difficult to lose weight caused by these plastic-like partially hydrogenated oils.

Aside from causing an epidemic of obesity, partially hydrogenated oils slowly kill you. Just as the partially hydrogenated oil becomes thicker and more viscous due to the intense processing, so does your blood. This is one reason that partially hydrogenated oils contributes to high blood pressure. There have literally been instances where surgeons have pulled out gummy like substances from arteries of patients, to later find out it was the aftermath of fast food fried in partially hydrogenated oils. That is disturbing. There are even studies that have shown the effects of partially hydrogenated oils taking a toll on the body within as little as ten minutes after consumption!

Countless health issues have been directly correlated to partially hydrogenated oils. Slowing the micro circulation of blood through to the brain causes physical as well as mental ailments including Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, ADHD, learning disabilities, and simply impaired thinking in general. Trans fat increases the “bad” cholesterol (LDL) and decreases the “good”(HDL) cholesterol levels in the body. This leads to an increase of heart disease. Trans fat has also been linked to diabetes, cancer, and cardiovascular disease. New results show that liver disease and even birth defects are now linked to this detrimental chemical we so often consume.

The good news? Following the awareness of how terribly poisonous partially hydrogenated oils are for you, is the empowerment to actually do something about it. Read labels. It’s that simple. Of course, stick to natural, healthy fruits and vegetables and essential fatty acid rich foods such as fish and nuts. In addition to that, simply read the labels of everything you purchase. Don’t let healthy advertisements on the labels mislead you. There are companies that label their products as healthy and still use this ingredient, which is a grave injustice to the health food industry, and ultimately false advertisement. Do yourself and your loved ones a favor: do not purchase anything with partially hydrogenated oils in the ingredients. If you are eating out, do your best to stay away from fried foods as they are often fried in this type of oil. By eliminating this deleterious chemical from your diet, you will no doubt be shedding pounds while ultimately adding years to your life. Take this seriously. After all, you wouldn’t consume a bottle of rat poisoning would you? Poison is poison, no matter how it tastes.