As of 2015, products that contain Olestra include potato chips, such as Frito-Lay Light chips and Procter & Gamble's Pringles fat-free chips. Ruffles Light chips and Doritos Light contain Olestra. Products made with Olestra are banned in Canada and the United Kingdom.
Olestra, also referred to as Olean, is a fat- and calorie-free additive that is typically found in foods such as corn chips, French fries, and other manufactured snack foods. Olestra is used as a cooking alternative for shortening, oil and butter; however, studies show that it has adverse impacts on the body, including the ability to absorb essential vitamins and nutrients.
The calorie- and fat-free significance of Olestra is for manufacturers to advertise products as fat-free, reduced-fat or as light alternatives for those trying to manage their weight. Research indicates that many people consume more overall calories when they consume fat-free alternative foods, indicating that fat substitutes alter the body's ability to regulate eating. The result is that many people gain, rather than maintain or lose, weight. Research also suggests that fake fat alternatives have a negative impact on digestion and metabolism, making it more likely for the extra pounds to be retained instead of shed. Other side effects include bloating, gas, loose bowels and cramping.