Eggs are back in the news, with a new study concluding that regular consumption of the beloved breakfast food may increase the risk of heart disease after all.
The large, long-running study – published today (March 15) in the journal JAMA – found that eating three to four eggs per week was linked to a 6 percent increase in a person’s risk of developing heart disease and an 8 percent increase in their risk of dying from any cause during the study period, compared with not eating eggs.
The culprit, the researchers wrote, appears to be cholesterol; the study also found that eating 300 mg of cholesterol per day was tied to a 17 percent increase in the risk of developing heart disease and an 18 percent increase in the risk of dying during the study period, compared with consuming no cholesterol.
The new findings contradict the latest dietary guidelines for Americans, released in 2015; in them, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) said that Americans no longer had to worry about keeping their cholesterol intake within a certain limit.
The authors of the new study, from Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, conclude that Americans should limit their cholesterol and egg consumption, and that current dietary guidelines for cholesterol may need to be reevaluated.
So what does this mean for the beloved breakfast food? Indeed, at 186 milligrams of cholesterol per egg yolk, eggs are one of the highest cholesterol foods typically consumed by Americans. [ 7 Tips for Moving Toward a More Plant-Based Diet]
To find out where Americans should stand on “eggs for breakfast,” Live Science reached out to several experts who weren’t involved with the new research.
“There’s always been a [suggestion in the data] that eggs can raise cholesterol and create cardiovascular harm,” said Dr. Andrew Freeman, director of the Cardiovascular Prevention and Wellness program at National Jewish Health hospital in Denver. “The evidence is pretty clear that animal products, and high-cholesterol products, should be limited” in the diet, Freeman told Live Science.
Although some previous studies have failed to find a link between eggs, along with other forms of cholesterol consumption, and heart disease risk, the new study was able to thoroughly adjust for other foods in a person’s diet in order to focus on the effect of eggs and cholesterol.
“This study does a good job of parsing the data and identifying dietary cholesterol as an individual and independent component of diet” that’s linked with heart disease and mortality, said Dana Hunnes, a senior dietitian at the Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in Los Angeles.
The apparent back-and-forth on egg recommendations has meant that “this had become a confusing topic to discuss with patients,” said Dr. Seth Martin, a cardiologist and associate professor of medicine at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine. “It is nice to get clearer data on this controversial topic to better inform future guidelines and our patients,” Martin said of the new study.
Some of the confusion around cholesterol in …read more
Source:: Daily times