Cancel cheese omelette. There are alarming news for egg lovers who have happily consumed their favorite breakfast since the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans no longer limited the dietary cholesterol or the number of eggs they could eat.
A large, new study of north-western medicine reports that adults who ate more eggs and cholesterol in their diet had a significantly higher risk of cardiovascular disease and death from any cause.
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"The message to take home really concerns cholesterol, which is high in eggs and in particular egg yolks", has related study author Norrina Allen, associate professor of preventive medicine at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. "As part of a healthy diet, people need to consume less amounts of cholesterol. People who consume less cholesterol have a lower risk of heart disease."
Egg yolks are one of the richest sources of dietary cholesterol among all commonly consumed foods. A large egg has 1
Other animal products such as red meat, processed meat and high-fat dairy products (butter or whipped cream) also have a high cholesterol content, said lead author Wenze Zhong, a postdoctoral fellow in preventive medicine at Northwestern.
Debate on the disease
If the consumption of cholesterol or eggs in the diet is linked to cardiovascular diseases and death has been discussed for decades. Eating less than 300 milligrams of dietary cholesterol a day was the recommendation of the guidelines before 2015. However, the latest dietary guidelines have omitted a daily limit for dietary cholesterol. The guidelines also include the weekly consumption of eggs as part of a healthy diet.
An adult in the United States receives an average of 300 milligrams of cholesterol a day and eats about three or four eggs a week.
The results of the study indicate that current recommendations for dietary guidelines in the United States for dietary cholesterol and eggs may need to be re-evaluated, the authors said.
The tests for the eggs have been mixed. Previous studies have found that eating eggs did not increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. But those studies generally have a less diverse sample, shorter follow-up time and limited adaptability to other parts of the diet, said Allen.
"Our study showed that two people had exactly the same diet and the only difference in diet were eggs, so you could directly measure the effect of egg consumption on heart disease," he said. Allen. "We found that cholesterol, regardless of the source, was associated with an increased risk of heart disease.
Exercise, the overall quality of the diet and the amount and type of fat in the diet did not change the 39; association between dietary cholesterol and cardiovascular disease and the risk of death
The new study examined data grouped on 29,615 racially and ethnically diverse US adults from six prospective cohort studies over a period of up to 31 years of follow-up.
- Eating 300 mg of dietary cholesterol a day was associated with a 17% higher risk of incident cardiovascular disease and an 18% higher risk of death for all Causes: Cholesterol was the driving factor independent of the consumption of saturated fats and other dietary fats.
- Eating three to four eggs a week was associated with a risk but higher than 6% of cardiovascular diseases and 8% higher than any cause of death.
Should I stop eating eggs?
Based on the study, people should keep low cholesterol intake in their diet by reducing cholesterol-rich foods such as eggs and red meat in their diet.
But don't completely banish eggs and other cholesterol-rich foods from meals, Zhong said, because eggs and red meat are good sources of important nutrients like essential amino acids, iron and choline. Instead, choose egg whites instead of whole eggs or eat whole eggs in moderation.
"We want to remind people that there is cholesterol in eggs, especially egg yolks, and this has a damaging effect," said Allen, who cooked scrambled eggs for his children that morning. "Eat them in moderation."
Estimation of food consumption
Diet data was collected using questionnaires on food frequency or following a diet history. Each participant was asked for a long list of what they had eaten for the year or the previous month. Data was collected during a single visit. The study had up to 31 years of follow-up (median: 17.5 years), during which 5,400 cardiovascular events and 6,132 deaths from all causes were diagnosed.
An important limitation of the study is the participants' long-term consumption patterns have not been evaluated.
"We have a snapshot of how their eating patterns looked," Allen said. "But we think they represent an estimate of a person's dietary intake. However, people may have changed their diet, and we cannot account for it."
Other Northwest authors include: Linda Van Horn, Marilyn Cornelis , Dr. John Wilkins, Dr. Hongyan Ning, Mercedes Carnethon, Dr. Philip Greenland, Lihui Zhao and Dr. Donald Lloyd-Jones.