Restaurant Healthy Without Government Regulations

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

(Memphis) The federal government made the first step today to try to get trans fat out of our diets completely. The idea is to make us healthier but many are questioning if that is a decision the folks in Washington should be making. They want the government to stay out of their frying pans.

At The Bistro restaurant prides itself on serving up healthy soul food. Owner Terra Smith says the two can co-exist. We asked Smith what's the secret in the flavor.

"The seasonings. the seasonings I use and just the love," said Terra Smith, owner At The Bistro.

Smith fries up pork chops in vegetable oil without trans fats. Her vegetables are cooked meatless and the salads are actually a favorite among customers.

"I love restaurants like this that offer a healthy option," said Mohsin Alvi, customer.

Trans fats allow food to stay longer on the shelves and add flavor but dietician say they are among the worst fats. They raise our bad cholesterol and lower our good cholesterol. That's a reason to stay away, according to Registered Dietician, Jessica VanCleave, Church Health Center.

VanCleave said, "You can use butter in small amounts, using olive oil and canola oil, adding likes of fresh flavors with herbs and spices and things like that."

That's something Smith has been doing since her restaurant opened 7 years ago but some of her customers say how healthy they chose to eat should be their decision not a decision by the government.

"I don't if I'm necessarily on board with people saying how you should be eating your food," said customer Cheston Laursen.

At The Bistro customer, Kinyada Taylor, has similar thoughts.

"If I want the government to tell me what I can and cannot eat or do I want to make that conscious decision myself. I thought this was the land of the free," said Taylor.