Little late here with my update on the trans fat challenge--been busy!
Well, trans fat is probably the number one thing I look out for. I avoid it like the plague. I don't just look for the grams of trans fat listed on the label (it's often not correct), I look at the ingredients list and check for partially hydrogenated oils. That's the true tell. So, I don't have a lot in my house that contains it. The only staple I can think of is flour tortillas. Some day I will get around to making my own, but for now I still buy them. However, I abstained during the challenge. :)
My family wanted Oreos with our movie night. In the past I bought Newman's Own Newmanos, because the cream filling was trans fat free. Since companies are now required to label trans fat, Oreos has reformulated their product. They couldn't risk everyone knowing just how many grams of trans fat their product contained. So now I will buy them about twice a year. The other night I indulged in one cookie.
Other things that come to mind are peanut butter. I buy Smucker's Natural because it truly only contains peanuts and salt. Don't be fooled by the other brands that try to say they don't contain trans fat. They do, and they're loaded with sugar.
Many bread products have trans fat added to soften them--sandwich bread, hamburger buns and hot dog buns. Packaged cookies, cakes, and chips contain trans fat. Packaged cookie dough is a big one--it's loaded, and also packaged biscuits and rolls. Make your own cookies and use real butter. Believe me, they will be much better for you!
I used to buy crescent rolls in a tube. Pampered Chef recipes call for this ingredient all the time. Well, not any more! Not since I found out about the trans fat! Packaged pizza crust, too. Make your own with my french bread recipe. It's so very easy and much, much more delicious!
Boxed cake mix contains trans fat and canned icing is pure trans fat and sugar. Think of it as a can of Crisco with sugar and flavoring added. I do not eat store-bought cakes anymore and trans fat is the reason. If you invite me over for a party and see that I do not partake of the cake, don't think I have immense will power to avoid junk food. I have just read about trans fat and what it does to your body and it totally turned me off to store cakes. I make my own and enjoy them fully! Click here for my chocolate cupcake recipe.
I could go on and on about trans fats. Learn to check your labels. Cook with butter, coconut oil, and olive oil. Start making more things at home from scratch. Take your babysteps and checkout The Trans Fat Solution by Kim Severson for more information. I don't agree with everything in this book (she mentions using soy protein, for example), but her information on trans fat is wonderful. And she has good information about coconut oil, too. The informative part of the book is only 31 pages, the rest are recipes. It's available at my local library, it might be at yours, too.