Will this new fat make me gain weight?   My favorite whole-grain crackers have a new ingredient called “interesterified fat.” The package still says “no trans fat,” but I’m wondering what this new fat is, especially since I’m trying to lose 20 pounds. Is it bad news?

Interesterified fat (IE) is a saturated fat that’s been chemically altered to boost shelf stability. It’s showing up in more products as manufacturers move away from trans fats. Research shows IEs to be like some other saturated fats when it comes to cholesterol-slightly raising the ratio of LDL (“bad”) cholesterol to HDL (“good”) cholesterol. As with all fats, IEs provide 9 calories per gram. But my take is that it’s better to use your fat calories on unsaturated fats like fish oil, olive oil and flaxseed oil. These varieties help with weight loss, boost mood and promote heart health. A cracker that delivers these fats: Doctor Kracker (at DrKracker.com and Whole Foods Market stores).

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