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The City of Broad Shoulders-Not of Trans Fatshttp://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=5539138Aldermen ask fast-food giants to explain use of trans fat oilshttp://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/nearnorthwest/chi-0607200175jul20,1,4395530.story?coll=chi-newslocalnearnorthwest-hedRevealing Trans Fatshttp://www.fda.gov/fdac/features/2003/503_fats.htmlChowhoundhttp://www.chowhound.com/Check, Please!http://www.wttw.com/main.taf?p=1,5Chicago, which had the dubious distinction of leading the nation in homicides throughout much of the 1990s, is now taking on another deadly phenomenon: trans-fats. To be sure, Chicago has never been known to be a city of moderation, whether one considers the city’s massive urban renewal projects or the towering facades that line the land close to the shores of Lake Michigan. As a growing group of people both in the city (and nationally) grow increasingly concerned about public health matters, the groundswell for change has resulted in the city council passing a no-smoking ordinance (which does not go into full effect until 2008) and looking into other partnerships to keep Chicagoans healthy. Now, under the direction of long-time alderman Edward M. Burke, the council is considering banning trans fats in restaurants. If Mr. Burke’s proposal passes, restaurants that fail to take out these fats could be fined up to $1000 a day. Understandably, a number of trade organizations representing the city’s restaurant industry are more than a bit upset about the proposal, and even Mayor Richard M. Daley has remarked, “Is the City Council going to plan our menus?” The immediate future appears safe for lovers of the city’s famous pierogies, Italian sausage, and cheese fries, but change may be on its way. The first link will take users to a news article from this Tuesday’s New York Times which offers some insights into the parties involved with the proposed ban on trans fats in Chicago. The second link will take users to a recent bit of radio reporting from National Public Radio on trans fats offered by Kim Serverson, who has written a book on the subject of eating healthy. The third link leads to a piece from Dan Mihalopoulos of the Chicago Tribune, who reports on the efforts of city aldermen to question CEOs of fast-food chains on their continued use of trans-fat oils. The fourth link leads to a very informative fact sheet from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration about trans fat. For those who love to dine out and compare notes on their experiences, the fifth link will be most interesting, and probably a bit fun. On the Chowhound site, visitors can peruse features such as “A Tale of Two Chowhounds”, and look over their rather prodigious message boards, which include such posts as “What to do with fresh sardines?” and “Where do you like to eat in Redondo Beach?” Of course, if one has a great deal of spare time, it’s worth looking at the ongoing debates about the best hot dog eateries in either New York or Chicago. The final link leads to the homepage of Chicago public television’s very own show, “Check, Please!” Here visitors can read reviews offered by every-day Chicagoans as they try out different restaurants, and also take a look at some fine recipes.
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