Modified vegetable oil? Sounds like a bad idea to me

Monday, October 12, 2009 15:34
Comments Off on Modified vegetable oil? Sounds like a bad idea to me

Spanish researchers are working on a chemically modified vegetable oil that they claim will be a good substitute for pork fat in processed meats and other foods. Haven't we learned our lesson yet? Nothing good ever seems to
come out of our attempts to chemically modify foods to make them
"better" for us.

What's so wrong with pork fat, anyway? The researchers claim
that they're simply trying to provide consumers with foods that are
lower in saturated fat.  Even if reducing saturated fat is desirable (some will disagree), I'm pretty sure that replacing it with chemically-modified vegetable oil is not a step in the right direction. Doesn't that sound like the kind of thinking that brought us trans-fat-filled margarines 30 years ago?

Besides,  pork fat actually contains as much monounsaturated fat as saturated fat. Whatever your position on saturated fats, replacing monounsaturated fat with polyunsaturated fats certainly doesn't seem like an upgrade.

More to the point, chemically manipulating foods to look and taste like something other than what they are usually does a lot more for food manufacturers' bottom lines than it does for consumers' health. 

I think we'd all be better off eating less "modified" food.  If the saturated fat in pork makes you nervous, eat less pork. 

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