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Press release

​Statement from Dr. Tom Frieden, President and CEO of Resolve to Save Lives, an initiative of Vital Strategies, on global progress to eliminate artificial trans fats

New York, USA - April 2, 2021

New York, NY – April 1, 2021


"In the past two years, 29 countries have enacted best-practice trans fat policies that protect their people from this toxic, unnecessary chemical in food. Trans fat is an industrially produced chemical added to foods that increases the risk of heart attack. Today, best-practice policies go into effect in the European Union. India recently became the first lower-middle-income country in the world to pass a best-practice policy—one that when implemented can protect more than 1 billion people. The World Health Organization’s REPLACE initiative to make the world trans fat free by 2023 is growing exponentially and gaining momentum.

"Global artificial trans fat elimination will save an estimated 17.5 million lives over the next 25 years and prevent at least twice as many heart attacks. It is feasible. It saves money. It saves lives. And it promotes health equity. Action to protect people against trans fat also builds regulatory systems that can improve food safety.

"To protect the 4.9 billion people whose governments have not yet taken action to make their food trans fat free, continued momentum is essential—2023 is just two years away. Governments must lead. And food industries, fats and oil suppliers have an important role to play in supporting these regulations for a safe and healthy future.

"The COVID-19 pandemic has shown the importance of effective government action and of resilient, healthy populations. Making the world trans fat free will support economic recovery, reduce the burden on health care systems, and reduce the susceptibility of people all over the world to infectious diseases and other health threats. When trans fat is gone from the global food supply, every child will grow up without this toxic risk, our food will still taste great, and only our hearts will know the difference.”

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About Resolve to Save Lives
Resolve to Save Lives, an initiative of the global health organization Vital Strategies, focuses on preventing deaths from cardiovascular disease and preventing epidemics. It is led by Dr. Tom Frieden, former director of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. To find out more, visit: https://www.resolvetosavelives.org or Twitter @ResolveTSL.

About Dr. Tom Frieden
Tom Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention during the Obama administration, when he oversaw responses to the H1N1 influenza, Ebola and Zika epidemics, is President and CEO of Resolve to Save Lives, an initiative of Vital Strategies, and Senior Fellow for Global Health at the Council on Foreign Relations. Twitter: @DrTomFrieden.

About Vital Strategies
Vital Strategies is a global health organization that believes every person should be protected by a strong public health system. We work with governments and civil society in 73 countries to design and implement evidence-based strategies that tackle their most pressing public health problems. Our goal is to see governments adopt promising interventions at scale as rapidly as possible. To find out more, please visit www.vitalstrategies.org or Twitter @VitalStrat.

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Media Contacts:
Christina Honeysett, Vital Strategies: choneysett@vitalstrategies.org; +1.914.424.3356
Erin Sykes, Resolve to Save Lives: esykes@resolvetosavelives.org; +1.646.612.0001
Steven Chlapecka, Resolve to Save Lives, schlapecka@resolvetosavelives.org, +1.917.623.0246