Trans fats really don’t have anything good going for them. Although they’re used all over the world in a wide variety of foods, trans fats contribute to a slew of serious health problems. In an effort to slow the rate of deadly diseases associated with them, the World Health Organization (WHO) is calling for a trans fat free world by 2023. Is it possible?

This week, the WHO launched a campaign called REPLACE to help every country remove trans fats from their food supply. The acronym REPLACE stands for “review dietary sources, promote use of healthier fats, legislate, assess changes, create awareness and enforce.”

Countries where trans fat use is particularly high are found throughout South Asia, Latin America, South Africa and the Middle East. REPLACE is set to help these and other communities discontinue their use of trans fats, and begin to include much healthier oils and fats instead.

Why is the WHO committed to cutting trans fat for good? According to Dr. Tedros Adhanom, the director-general of the WHO, REPLACE is in an effort to reduce the amount of non-communicable diseases, which he points out “are the world’s leading cause of death.”

According to the WHO, noncommunicable diseases kill up to 40 million people every year, and account for close to 70 percent of all global deaths.

What are non-communicable diseases? Cardiovascular disease ranks high, along with other chronic diseases, such as respiratory disease, cancer, diabetes and others.

Unfortunately, trans fats contribute to these deadly diseases.

Trans fats are used in lots of convenient foods like baked goods, doughnuts, biscuits, crackers, breakfast sandwiches, frozen pizza, fried foods and margarine.

Ashfall and vog are the latest of many problems coming from Hawaii’s volcano, Kilauea. When Hawaii’s Kilauea volcano first erupted two weeks ago, residents spoke of the goddess, Pele, who is said to live on the Kilauea volcano. One Hawaiian said, “If Pele comes, Pele comes. Now we’re kind of crossing our fingers to see what Pele might do next.” And in the two weeks following the initial eruption, Pele seems to be one busy goddess. 

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