Artificial trans fats will be off the menu in New York restaurants from Tuesday, as city authorities seek to remove a major cause of heart disease from their residents' diets.
Restaurants were banned from using frying oil and spreads containing trans fats last year, but as of July 1 the prohibition will apply to all types of food, including the fat used by bakers and pastry chefs.
Advertisement"All foods served, including baked goods, oils, shortenings and margarines used for baking, and pre-prepared items that contain artificial trans fat, must have less that 0.5 grams of trans fat per serving," the health department said.
"Foods served in the manufacturer's original, sealed packaging, such as candy and crackers, are still exempt."
The department said there was widespread acceptance of last year's ban, with more than 98 percent of inspected restaurants in compliance last month, while many have gone even further than required and also cut saturated fat.
"I made the transition seven months ago," said Saul Haye, owner of Christie's Jamaican Patties in Brooklyn.
"Cooking my patties and baked goods with replacement shortenings hasn't hurt the products or my business, and it's healthier for my customers."
Trans fat, which is made when manufacturers add hydrogen to vegetable oil, increases "bad" cholesterol levels, raising the risk of coronary heart disease, according to the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
New York was the first city in the United States to ban trans fats in restaurants, followed by Philadelphia last year.