Researchers looked at 4,440 people ages 45-79 and found that over eight years, those who ate fried potatoes such as French fries, hash browns and potato chips two or more times a week had double the risk of early death than those who did not eat fried potatoes, CNN reported.
The study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition does not prove a direct link between eating fried potatoes and early death but “we believe that the cooking oil, rich in trans-fat, is an important factor in explaining mortality in those eating more potatoes,” said lead author Nicola Veronese, a scientist at the National Research Council in Padova, Italy.
Trans fat has been shown to boost levels of “bad” LDL cholesterol in the blood, which can lead to heart disease, CNN reported.
Veronese said he hopes the study will alert people that eating fried potatoes “could be an important risk factor for mortality. Thus, their consumption should be strongly limited.”