Potential pollutants: consumer advocates warn against foods with palm oil

Palm oil is a blessing for the food industry: At room temperature the fat is solid and melts at 30 to 37 degrees Celsius. Besides, it is cheap, easily available and has a neutral taste. Palm oil is therefore sweet as in heart food may be used. It is nut-Nougat-creams gives a delicate enamel and makes Margarine and spreads prank. No other vegetable oil has these properties.

But the all-rounder is increasingly becoming the focus of criticism for different reasons. Palm oil is not only extremely harmful to the climate because for the cultivation of rain forest is cleared. It also notes that palm oil from a health perspective, concern is growing. For one, it contains a lot of saturated fatty acids, which are associated with cardiovascular diseases. Even more critical experts, however, substances, which are produced in the refining of the Fat: will Be exposed to vegetable fats to high temperatures, for example, in the refining, forming pollutants, so-called fatty acid esters such as 3-MCPD, 2-MCPD and Glycidol. In palm oil the content of these critical substances is higher than in any other fat.

The Evil bears the abbreviation 3-MCPD

According to the Federal Institute for risk assessment (BfR) have these Compounds a health damaging Potential, and are in foods that are generally “undesirable”. Glycidol is considered likely to be carcinogenic, the harmful substance 3-MPCD as a “potential human carcinogen”, which means: He is suspected in humans, causing cancer. The European food safety authority Efsa has derived in the year 2016, therefore, for the first time maximum levels for a tolerable daily intake (TDI), and in the year 2018 updated. The value is currently at 2.0 micrograms of 3-MCPD per kilogram of body weight.

But what does this mean in everyday life? What foods contain larger amounts of the critical substance? And how the intake of Fat can be harmful substances, in principle, limit?

Consumer centre warns

The Verbraucherzentrale Bayern were recently 26 palm oil-based baking, bread, spreads and Snacks will be investigated and the manufacturer asks for the content of 3-MCPD in their products. Eleven companies provided accurate information to the grease contaminants. The other responded evasively, only to try to minimize.

The analysis of the present data shows that The limit for 3-MCPD was quickly reached, especially in children, the weigh a little. The consumer advocates illustrate this with two examples. The first example refers to a three and a half year old child weighing 15 kilograms Eats it for Breakfast, 20 grams of cereals pillows with nougat filling and nibbling between meals 25 grams of chocolate with yogurt filling, and 48 grams of Croissants with chocolate filling, it takes 38,66 micrograms of 3-MCPD-fatty acid esters. The tolerable intake level is 30 micrograms.

Similarly, in the case of the second example of bill – a five-year-old kid with 18 kgs of body weight. It eats much like the child in the first bill, gets a little more cereal (40 grams instead of 20 grams) and eat for lunch, a soup with 25 grams of baking peas. In total, that makes about 41 micrograms of ingested fat pollutants – tolerable 36 micrograms would be.

Stay away from Junk Food

It is unclear how critical a single Crossing of values actually is. The experts of the consumer indicate, however, that children could reach the limit more frequently and exceed. “Through the variety of palm oil-containing foods on the market, the risk that children who regularly eat highly processed foods, also to frequent Overruns”, it is from the consumer. “The burden of glycidol star rises, the more palm oil-based products are consumed. It is also important to note that because of the toxicity of the substance, in principle, a Minimization principle applies.”

How can this be achieved? The consumer advocates advise to be careful when shopping on the ingredients list, and to buy palm oil free products. Deep-fried food like French fries may also contain grease, pollutants, and should only occasionally on the table. And otherwise, what nutrition experts do not recommend anyway for years: Fresh, home-cooked and natural as possible food should not be beat, industrially-produced food to lengths only in terms of fat pollutants.

Sources: Verbraucherzentrale Bayern / Laves lower Saxony / EFSA / BfR / WWF

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