Eggs have been consistently associated with negative health effects by the mainstream health industries. The detrimental effects of eggs, so we are told, derived from their very high content of cholesterol in combination with their saturated fat levels. The high levels of cholesterol and saturated fat have been suggested to be a cause of cardiovascular disease. However, there are number of problems with this assertions. Firstly, dietary cholesterol does not affect blood cholesterol levels and the belief that it does is based on nothing more than wishful thinking. Further, there is good evidence that plasma levels of cholesterol are not a cause of cardiovascular disease, but meanly a symptom of it. Secondly, there is virtually no evidence that eggs are in any way detrimental to the health. In fact. Eggs are a rich source of nutrients, and much of the World’s population that have diets deficient in animal protein would benefit from eating eggs. Thirdly, the nutritional content of an egg can vary considerably based on the diet of the hen, and therefore defining them as good or bad is disingenuous at best. Therefore the accusation that eggs are bad for the health can easily be refuted based on a large body of scientific evidence.
Recently a number of meta-analyses have been performed to assess the effects of eggs in human nutrition. The results of these analyses have largely been based on associations between eggs and Western lifestyle disease. For example, in one such study, researchers assessed the effects of egg consumption of the risk of type 2 diabetes. The researchers noted that there was a large heterogeneity in the results, which can also be expected with large scale nutritional studies. This is based on the methodologies used and the fact that data can be collected and displayed in ways that provide variability. For example, in the US based studies there was an elevated risk of type 2 diabetes with consumption of more than 3 eggs per week, but in non-US studies, no such association was present. It would seem that this difference is likely down to the methodological differences used in the studies and in particular, how other variables were controlled. However, overall there was no increased risk of type 2 diabetes with egg consumption, which is supporting of other studies that have not shown that eggs are associated with the development of disease.
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