EGGS. – TO EAT OR NOT TO EAT?

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by Dr Alison Kamffer

Unfortunately the poor egg has received a great deal of bad press over the years, with claims that it increases cholesterol, and in the UK scares that raw eggs would infect you with salmonella. What is the truth? Should we all be suffering the dreaded egg white omelette or can we enjoy our egg breakfast every day?

Eggs are certainly nutritious, -just imagine, a whole egg contains all the nutrients needed to turn a single cell into an entire chicken.

What about the cholesterol story? A single medium sized egg contains 186 mg of cholesterol, which is 62% of the recommended daily intake. It used to be thought that eating cholesterol would raise cholesterol in the blood and contribute to heart disease, but in fact we now know that the more cholesterol you eat the less your liver produces.

Cholesterol is a very important part of the body and is an essential part of every single cell membrane, and is also used to make steroid hormones like testosterone, estrogen and cortisol.

Several studies have been done on egg consumption in which people were split into two groups. One group ate 1-3 whole eggs per day, while the other group eats egg substitutes instead. The researchers then followed the people for a number of weeks.

These studies show that in almost all cases, HDL (the “good”) cholesterol goes up , total and LDL cholesterol levels usually don’t change, but sometimes they increase slightly. Eating Omega-3 enriched eggs can lower blood triglycerides, another important risk factor. Blood levels of carotenoid antioxidants like Lutein and Zeaxanthine also increase significantly. In 70% of people, it has no effect on Total or LDL cholesterol, however, in 30% of people termed “hyper responders”, these numbers do go up slightly. That being said, the studies show that eggs change the LDL particles from small, dense LDL to Large LDL; people who have predominantly large LDL particles have a lower risk of heart disease, so even if eggs cause mild increases in Total and LDL cholesterol levels, this is not a cause for concern.

The science is clear that up to 3 whole eggs per day are perfectly safe for healthy people who are trying to stay healthy.

If you would like research references regarding egg consumption, please feel free to contact me! Dr.ali@dietquest.co.za

Thanks to Authority Nutrition.

 

This article was written by SureSlim’s Dr Ali.

FOR MORE INFORMATION go to www.sure-slim.co.za

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