New York Restaurants Urged to Eliminate Trans Fats - Los Angeles Times: "NEW YORK No one would ever mistake a place teeming with steakhouses and French restaurants not to mention street vendors hawking beef-laden hot dogs and margarine-covered bagels as being particularly health-conscious.
But if the city's health department has its way, New York will become the first American metropolis whose restaurants do away with trans fats, chemically engineered ingredients in cooking oils that act like cement in the human heart.
Trans fats are created when unsaturated vegetable oils undergo a chemical process known as hydrogenation. That gives the oils a solid form that is essential to holding together a cookie or achieving the golden crisp of French fries.
Trans fats, known as partially hydrogenated vegetable oils, were developed years ago to replace saturated fats.
Scientists later discovered that trans fats, common in such things as baked goods and fried chicken, were even worse for the heart.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has targeted trans fats in grocery stores. Beginning Jan. 1, food makers must disclose levels of trans fats on nutrition labels."