PHE publishes the SACN report on saturated fats and health

The Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) report on saturated fats and health has been published today by Public Health England (PHE).

The new SACN report explores the relationship between saturated fats, health outcomes and risk factors for non-communicable diseases in the general UK population.

The Committee on Medical Aspects of Food Policy (COMA, the predecessor of SACN) in the reports on ‘Dietary Reference Values for Food Energy and Nutrients for the United Kingdom’ (COMA, 1991) and ‘Nutritional Aspects of Cardiovascular Disease’ (COMA, 1994) were the last reports which actively looked at the role of saturated fats in health.

Since the last COMA report was published in 1994, the evidence base on saturated fats and health has grown considerably and this report further assesses the most recent evidence on this topic.

In addition to the SACN report, PHE has also published the SACN’s responses to the consultation comments on the draft report, along with the received consultation comments in full.

IFST values the publication of the latest SACN report on the review of the impact of saturated fats on the health of the UK population, which will provide a useful, evidence-based reference for professionals engaged in food science and technology. It should influence the approach taken by manufacturers and caterers, in developing and preparing food products for adults and children (aged 5 years and over), by acknowledging that a reduction of saturated fat intake, to a maximum of about 10% of total dietary energy, is beneficial to the health of consumers. The report does not consider total dietary fat, individual saturated fatty acids, or the role of unsaturated fats (mono- and poly-), other than as a replacement for saturated fats, and recommends that changes should be in line with wider dietary recommendations, including the consumption of trans fatty acids.