Eggs - To Eat or Not to Eat based on the new Dietary Guidelines


After the New Dietary Guidelines were published, I got many inquiries about Eggs. The guidelines have lifted the limit on the actual amount of cholesterol intake (it used to be 300 mg Cholesterol a day limit since the 60s). It is because scientific studies have found poor link between intake of cholesterol in foods and risk of heart disease and stroke, and cholesterol intake only has a very minor effect on LDL cholesterol in blood for most people.

I was at a seminar that the cardiologist told the seniors they can have 1 egg a day because eggs are very nutritious and most seniors do not or cannot consume enough meat/proteins. For my own patients, I need to review their medical history and food records before I can make any individual recommendations. Studies show that as much as 25% of the population might be hyper-responder of the cholesterol in eggs. However, there's no test for that though which means you need to know about yourself.

If you have diabetes, you need to pay special attention. Among women with diabetes, each rise of 200mg cholesterol (about 1 egg) per 1000 calories resulted in a 37 percent increased in risk of developing heart disease (American Journal of Clinical Nutrition 2004), and A 2013 meta-analysis concluded that egg consumption may be linked with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes among the general population and cardiovascular disease among people with diabetes. I do have one patient (among others that eat eggs) whose cholesterol will go sky high when she eats eggs. Others have no effects after 3 months of consuming eggs.

Therefore, my recommendations is 3-5 whole eggs a week, but if you have diabetes, high cholesterol or you are on medications, before you start adding eggs back to your diet, please discuss with your MD or dietitian first. Another important message is that it's more important of what kind of foods you eat your eggs with. Due to the recent studies supporting the positive correlation between processed meats and cancer, plus the fact that processed meats are high in sodium which affects blood pressure, it's much better if you scramble your eggs with bell peppers, onions and mushroom, than you eat your eggs with sausage and bacon.

Remember Nutrition Studies and research are ongoing and you might be hearing conflicting messages along the way. What's always true is that if you choose to eat a certain food, do that in moderation, and you won't go wrong with that!

Interested in learning about weight goal and nutrition needs? Schedule a free body weight and fat% analysis with Hazel at 626-283-5128 or email to hazel@smarteater.net.

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