According to the National Institute of Health, heart disease is a catch-all phrase for a variety of conditions that affect the heart’s structure and how it works.
Coronary heart disease is a type of heart disease where the arteries of the heart cannot deliver enough oxygen-rich blood to the heart.
It is the leading cause of death in the United States.
In a study from The George Institute for Global Health, scientists found that banning trans fatty acids from the food supply could prevent thousands of deaths from heart disease.
Trans fats—made during the industrial process that converts vegetable oils into a solid form of fat—are a well-known risk factor for heart disease.
But it has been argued that eliminating them completely—as required by law in many overseas countries—would be too costly for both government and the food industry.
While trans fats occur naturally at low levels in meat and cow’s milk, people in most countries can also get them from partially hydrogenated vegetable oils in processed foods such as pastries.
But avoiding them isn’t easy because it’s not compulsory for manufacturers to list the number of trans fats on the nutrition information panel on packaged foods.
In the study, researchers set out to calculate the potential costs and health benefits of a nationwide ban on industrial trans-fatty acids in Australia’s food supply.
They found that such a ban could prevent around 2,000 deaths and 10,000 heart attacks over the first ten years and up to 42,000 deaths from heart disease over the lifetime of the adult population.
The cost of implementing this legislative measure was estimated to be A$22 million during the first ten years and A$56 million over the population’s lifetime, most of which was down to government costs for monitoring the implementation of the ban.
However, the estimated heart disease-related healthcare cost savings, compared to no ban, reached A$80 million over ten years and A$538 million over a lifetime.
Overall, the elimination of trans fatty acids was estimated to be cost-saving to highly cost-effective during the first ten years and highly cost-effective over the population’s lifetime.
The results supported the call by the WHO to eliminate trans fats from the food supply around the world.
If you care about heart disease, please read studies that Apple Watch can monitor frailty in people with heart disease, and thyroid hormone treatment is linked to higher death risk in heart disease.
For more information about heart health, please see recent studies about a surprising cause of abnormal heart rhythm, and results showing this walking can benefit people with heart disease.
The study was published in PLOS Medicine and conducted by Dr. Jason Wu, Program et al.
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