Singapore to ban partially hydrogenated oils

Oils

Partially hydrogenated oils (PHOs), a major source of artificial trans-fat, will be banned by the Ministry of Health (MOH), Senior Parliamentary Secretary for Health Amrin Amin said in Parliament on 6 Mar.

Agreeing on the World Health Organization’s (WHO) stand in the removal of artificial trans-fat from food supplies, Mr. Amrin also warned about the health risks when consuming artificial trans-fat.

In Singapore, there are already existing restrictions on trans-fat, including PHOs. Food manufacturers have to make mandatory declaration and limitation on the amount of trans fat in cooking oil and fats. This resulted in a reduction of local trans-fat intake by half in 2018, Mr. Amrin explained.

The restriction of PHOs should not harm Singaporeans’ food options and cost as the local food industry is generally supportive, he exclaimed. Nonetheless, the industry will be given time to make the necessary adjustments.

Meanwhile, a MOH spokesperson encouraged the use of alternatives such as sunflower and canola oil, which are unsaturated and healthier.

Drawing reference from Denmark, senior dietitian at National Healthcare Group Polyclinics Ms. Alvernia Chua said that such a ban might reduce the rates of heart disease and stroke over time in Singapore.

Heads up for food stall owners. Do make the necessary changes if you are going to be affected. For consumers like me, health is wealth. Stay healthy everyone, eat less trans-fat products.


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