Eggs: Debating the "truth" for your health
Published: July 31, 2015
Over the past few decades whether eggs have value in a “healthy” diet has been a subject of debate among people concerned about egg consumption and its effect on health.
The principle concern regarding egg consumption and health is the seemingly high cholesterol and saturated fat content of eggs.
Both dietary cholesterol and saturated fat appear to be associated with increased blood levels of LDL (low density lipoproteins) which may increase your risk of heart disease.
Recently several major newspapers reported an apparent turn-about on recommendations for the consumption of foods high in cholesterol suggesting that eggs, bacon and red meat need no longer be limited or avoided when it comes to health.
However, as with many media nutrition/health related reports, the original report from a specialist panel may have been misinterpreted.
Although there may be insufficient scientific evidence which conclusively indicates that reducing dietary cholesterol and saturated fat is directly related to lowering LDL cholesterol, there is evidence that suggests that it does.
Therefore, it may be premature to accept reports which seem to overturn previous knowledge about dietary cholesterol and health as “fact”, threw caution to the wind, and start piling your plates high with eggs.
Another confusing factor in the egg debate relates to recommendations for the number of eggs/day a healthy diet should contain. Is it 1, 2, none, or ? In addition, egg safety with respect to food poisoning may also be another confounding factor in your decision to consume or not consume eggs.
Despite this confusion and unresolved debate, eggs may still be a valuable food in an eating for health plan, but this may depend on how you view the following factors in relation to your health: nutrient content of eggs, health of the egg consumer, perceived economic value, versatility of eggs, and your personal philosophy towards nutritional health.
Whitney, E. & Rady Rolfes, S. (2005). Understanding Nutrition. Belmont, CA: Thomson Wadsworth
Hubbard, S.K. (2004). Medical nutrition therapy for food allergy and food intolerance. In Mann. K. & Escott-Stump, S. (Eds.)(2004). Krause's Food, Nutrition & Diet Therapy. (11th Ed.) Elsevier
Centre for Science in the Public Interest (June 2015, November 2010)