Cool Whip has 0g trans fat!
That’s what the label says. I'm NOT kidding. I wanted to purchase a tub of Cool Whip for a talk I was giving on the "10 Worst Foods of the Decade" and couldn’t find the tub variety, so I bought the aerosol can. As you can imagine, I was more than a little surprised to see the claim, “0g trans fat” on the label. Cool Whip is primarily water, chemicals (including trans fat) and air.
So what's up?
The keys to understanding this ludicrous claim is the amount in a serving and government requirements. The Food and Drug Administration has decided that for a product to claim zero grams of trans fat a product has to have less than .5 percent of trans fat per serving. Ludicrous! Zero should mean zero, don't you think?
So how much is a “Cool Whip serving”? Why it’s a mere 2 tablespoons. Dot some Cool Whip on the top of pudding or squirt a little in your mouth and you'll have a serving. Of course, if you eat more than a serving, then you are ingesting more than .5 grams of trans fat. If you eat more than 2 tablespoons of Cool Whip (and I imagine most do), then you’ll be over the government recommended limit. That’s the government’s recommendation, not mine. Never mind that trans fat has a half-life of 51 days. That means that it takes 51 days for trans fat to leave your body
The ingredient panel for the aerosol CoolWhip lists the ingredients as:
WATER, HYDROGENATED VEGETABLE OIL (COCONUT AND PALM KERNEL OILS), HIGH FRUCTOSE CORN SYRUP, CORN SYRUP, LESS THAN 2% OF SODIUM CASEINATE (FROM MILK), NATURAL AND ARTIFICIAL FLAVOR, CARRAGEENAN, POLYSORBATE 60, MONO-AND DIGLYCERIDES, SODIUM STEROYL LACTYLATE, BETA CAROTENE (COLOR). (CoolWhip ingredients for the tub variety vary slightly.)
Ingredients are listed in quantity levels, meaning that the largest ingredient is listed first. Lets look at the first eight:
1. Water is the number one ingredient. Actually it's air, but so far, so good.
2. Hydrogenated vegetable oil comes in second. This is the trans fat. The label states zero grams of trans fat, yet it is second on the ingredient list! Remember, the FDA allows LESS than .5 grams for a zero listing. Cool Whip's trans fat is derived from coconut and palm kernel oils. They begin with healthy oils and the process to hydrogenate it turns it into an unhealthy creamy product. This gives the product an incredibly long shelf life.
3. High Fructose Corn Syrup. This syrup is adulterated by combining enzymes such as amylase with the glucose. This allows it to be converted to fructose. Fructose is quickly turned to fat in your system.
4. Corn Syrup is sugar, but not just sugar, genetically altered sugar.
5. Sodium Caseinate less than 2% (from Milk). Sodium Caseinate is a protein found in cow’s milk that assists the oil and water to mix together.
6. Natural and artificial flavorings. Artificial flavorings are simply chemical mixtures to replace a natural flavor. Natural flavors are more deceiving, because they can be chemicals as well.
7. Carrageen is extracted from seaweed. It’s considered a natural thickening agent. Although considered natural, it’s come under scrutiny. It may cause digestive problems in some people.
8. Polysorbate 60 comes from processing corn, oil palms and petroleum. Yes, petroleum. The “poly” is from “polymer, the “sorb” from “sorbitol,” and the “ate” means that it contains oxygen.
Don't count on the Food and Drug Administration to have your best interest at heart. Next time you want a whipped topping, purchase whipping cream and whip it up yourself!
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