Every few months, a new buzzword pops up on the consciousness of a few health freaks and before you know it, it soon becomes a national or worldwide obsession.
The latest example of this phenomenon is trans fat. These two words have been cropping up everywhere—in fast food restaurants, bakery shops, as well as newspapers and magazines, making us increasingly paranoid about every bite of hawker or junk food we take. So what is trans fat? Beef up your trans fat knowledge with this quiz. Answers are at the bottom of the page.
Define the enemy
1) Basics first, all you health freaks. What is trans fat?
A) A type of unsaturated fat
B) A type of fat that is transferable from person to person
C) A type of fat that is transient and lasts for a short time in certain foods
D) A fat found in transatlantic foods
E) Fat that is in transit in your body
Know what the enemy stands for
2) Which of these terms is the true, unabbreviated name of the cunning guy called trans fat?
A) Transferrable fat
B) Transient fat
C) Transfigured fat
D) Trans fatty acids
E) Transformable fat
A fat by any other name would still be as fat
3) Trans fat also enjoys one of these monikers (or aliases) in its spare time.
A) Hydrogenated fat
B) Man-made or processed fat
C) Trans fatty acids
D) Unsaturated fat
E) All of the above
The origin of evil
4) C’mon—trans fat didn’t climb down from a tree and into your food. Where yonder does it come from?
A) When way too many preservatives are added to certain factory processes
B) When fat is boiled beyond a certain temperature
C) When manufacturers add hydrogen to vegetable oil
D) When food is over processed during commercial food preparation
E) When food is processed to a point when its natural state changes and trans fat is formed
How the enemy attacks
5) How does trans fat slowly, and ever-so-stealthily wreak serious damage on your health?
A) It’s easily transferred to your body very quickly, yet stays in your system for a long time
B) It raises your cholesterol level and also depletes good cholesterol, giving you a higher risk of heart disease
C) It cannot be easily digested, making you overweight (duh)
D) It slows down your metabolic rate and gives you heartburn and indigestion
E) It coats your intestines with an indelible layer of fat (now that’s gross!)
Where the enemy crouches and hides
6) Which of the following contains more than just a sprinkling of trans fat?
A) Milk and body fat of cows and sheep
B) Cookies and crackers
C) Doughnuts and pastries
E) All of the above
The fast way to fat
7) A question for fast food foodies—which of these fast foods is loaded with the highest level of trans fat?
C) Orange juice
E) French fries
How the enemy hits
8) Which of these statements do you think is a worthy summation of trans fat?
A) It clogs up your arteries and increases the risk of a heart attack or a stroke
B) It causes intestinary problems
C) It weakens your immune system
D) It gives you a higher chance of contracting gastricitis
E) It causes a host of digestive problems
Ways to hide from the enemy
9) Time for solutions—how do you avoid the hideous abomination called trans fat?
A) Eating more fruits, vegetables, beans and chicken
B) Buying more crackers, canned biscuits and cookies instead of doughnuts and muffins
C) Cooking less often at home
D) Chowing down at fast food restaurants
E) Buying more processed food from supermarkets
The dwelling places of the enemy
10) Here we go again—which of these foods does trans fat love hanging around in (yes, trust us—it’s that insidious)?
A) Fruits and vegetables
B) Soups with an oily base
D) Microwave popcorn
E) Ice cream
Why the enemy exists
11) Why do you think manufacturers bother adding trans fat to products?
A) It improves the taste of the food and extends its shelf life
B) It’s a preservative thingy for modern times
C) It is a natural occurrence during the industrial production of processed foods
D) There is no real reason—trans fat exists naturally in many forms. The whole debate is just overemphasized
E) It makes the food less perishable
Action against the enemy
12) In Dec 2006, one city in the States became the first in the country to ban trans fat at all its restaurants. Which city was it?
D) New York
If you scored:
0-3 You have absolutely no idea about what trans fat is—not even if it loomed up and hit you on the head. A hospital stay might be close at hand.
4-6 You vaguely grasp the concept of trans fat, but loads of it is probably lurking in your system now.
7-9 Not bad. You are quite savvy about the specifics of this sordid fat… but there’s room for improvement.
10-12 Excellent! You can start waging a nationwide campaign against TF, Joan of Arc-style.