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ABC News reports that while trans fat “has become the whipping post of the entire health community” because it raises the bad (LDL) cholesterol and lowers the good (HDL) cholesterol, there now seems to be some evidence that some natural trans fat could have some health benefits.

Go figure.

“One such natural trans fat is called conjugated linoleic acid, or CLA,” ABC reports. “It's present mostly in meat and dairy foods, such as milk, yogurt and cheese.

“Preliminary research suggests that its benefits may include actually reducing the risk of certain cancers and heart disease. A review of clinical research over the past 16 years, published recently in the journal Lipid Technology, stated that natural CLA trans fat ‘has no effect or may actually lower LDL cholesterol and has little effect on HDL cholesterol or triglycerides.’”

Consumers still need to be careful about how much of it they consume, but the evidence seems to be that there is a considerable difference between the manufactured trans fats that one finds in cookies and fried foods and the natural variety that are in meats and dairy products.
KC's View:
This is mostly evidence of how complicated the nutrition business is, and why consumers get confused.

Bob Johansen, of the Institute for the Future, points out that we live in what he calls a “VUCA” world - one that is Volatile, Uncertain, Complex, and Ambiguous. This certainly applies to issues of nutrition and health, and it is up to the retailer to help consumers make sense of it all.