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View Full Version : Research has Found No Link Between Eggs and Heart Disease



Angella
27th August 2012, 11:53 PM
One of the curious features of this study was the singling out of eggs without paying any attention to other foods. What about trans fat consumption, for example, which is now widely known to increase cardiovascular health risks? Or processed sugars and grains?

Additionally, while the subjects were reportedly asked about medications, drug use was not evaluated to see if there were any correlations between drugs and increased risk of arterial plaque build-up. After all, the subjects were all stroke patients, and are therefore likely to be on statins. Statins, we now know, are associated with an increased risk of diabetes, and heart disease is the number one killer of diabetics. So is the increased plaque build-up really caused by egg consumption, or is it related to drug-induced diabetes?

In a previous paper12, the researchers even point out a study showing that participants who developed diabetes during the course of the study doubled their risk of heart disease with regular egg consumption, while egg consumption had no impact on heart disease risk in non-diabetics.13 Overall, the idea that eggs are unhealthy is a complete myth, one that's easily debunked if you look at the evidence.

For example, previous studies have found that:

Consumption of more than 6 eggs per week does not increase the risk of stroke and ischemic stroke14
Eating two eggs a day does not adversely affect endothelial function (an aggregate measure of cardiac risk) in healthy adults, supporting the view that dietary cholesterol may be less detrimental to cardiovascular health than previously thought15
Proteins in cooked eggs are converted by gastrointestinal enzymes, producing peptides that act as ACE inhibitors (common prescription medications for lowering blood pressure)16
A survey of South Carolina adults found no correlation of blood cholesterol levels with "bad" dietary habits, such as use of red meat, animal fats, fried foods, butter, eggs, whole milk, bacon, sausage and cheese17
Not All Eggs are Created Equal

Ideally, the yolks should be consumed raw as the heat will damage many of the highly perishable nutrients in the yolk. Additionally, the cholesterol in the yolk can be oxidized with high temperatures, especially when it is in contact with the iron present in the whites and cooked, as in scrambled eggs, and such oxidation contributes to chronic inflammation in your body, which is definitely associated with increased risk of plaque formation and heart disease.

However, if you're eating raw eggs, they MUST be organic pastured eggs. You do not want to consume conventionally-raised eggs raw, as they're much more likely to be contaminated with pathogens such as salmonella. Organic pastured eggs are also far superior when it comes to nutrient content. In a 2007 egg-testing project, Mother Earth News compared the official U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) nutrient data for commercial eggs with eggs from hens raised on pasture and found that the latter typically contains:

1/3 less cholesterol 2/3 more vitamin A
3 times more vitamin E

1/4 less saturated fat 2 times more omega-3 fatty acids 7 times more beta-carotene


The dramatically superior nutrient levels are most likely the result of the differences in diet between free ranging, pastured hens and commercially-farmed hens. An egg is considered organic if the chicken was only fed organic food, which means it will not have accumulated high levels of pesticides from the grains (mostly GM corn) fed to typical chickens. It's important to realize that an egg can be organic without being pasture-raised. "Pastured" means the chickens have been allowed to forage for its natural food sources outside, and is your best guarantee of a high quality egg. A deep yellow or orange yolk is a telltale sign of high-quality organic pastured eggs.

How to Find Fresh Pastured Organic Eggs

The key to getting high quality eggs is to buy them locally, either from an organic farm or farmers market. Fortunately, finding organic eggs locally is far easier than finding raw milk as virtually every rural area has individuals with chickens. Farmers markets are a great way to meet the people who produce your food. With face-to-face contact, you can get your questions answered and know exactly what you're buying. Better yet, visit the farm and ask for a tour. To locate a free-range pasture farm, try asking your local health food store, or check out the following web listings:

Local Harvest
USDA's farmer's market listing
Eat Wild
Avoid Omega-3 Eggs

If you absolutely must purchase your eggs from a commercial grocery store, look for ones that are marked free-range organic. They're like still going to originate from a mass-production facility (so you'll want to be careful about eating them raw), but it's about as good as it gets if you can't find a local source.

I would strongly encourage you to AVOID ALL omega-3 eggs, as they are some of the least healthy for you. These eggs typically come from chickens that are fed poor-quality sources of omega-3 fats that are already oxidized. Also, omega-3 eggs perish much faster than non-omega-3 eggs.

As discussed by Mark Sisson:18

"...hens given an unnatural industry-standard diet high in omega-6 containing grains (soy and corn) produce less healthful eggs than hens on a more natural diet of grains lower in omega-6 with supplementary antioxidants.19

When subjects ate two of the soy/corn-fed eggs a day, which were high in omega-6 fats, their oxidized LDL levels were increased by 40 percent. Subjects who ate two of the other eggs each day, which were low in omega-6 fats, had normal levels of oxidized LDL (comparable to subjects in the control group, who consumed between two and four eggs a week). Since the oxidation of LDL particles is strongly hypothesized to be a crucial causative factor in atherosclerosis, it's conceivable that eating normal, industrial eggs could have a negative effect on carotid plaque."


source Dr Mercola