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Eggs and Your Heart Health

Eggs and Heart Health

According to a recent study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, eating up to a dozen eggs a week does not increase the risk of heart disease.

Over one year, the study tracked 128 participants and found egg consumption as part of a healthy diet does not raise cardiovascular risk factors. These factors include higher cholesterol, blood sugar and blood pressure for people with pre-diabetes and Type 2 diabetes.

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Researchers found no significant difference between those who consumed a higher amount of eggs and those who consumed less.

“Despite differing advice around safe levels of egg consumption for people with pre-diabetes and Type 2 diabetes, our research indicates people do not need to hold back from eating eggs if this is part of a healthy diet,” Dr. Nick Fuller, an author of the study.

According to Fuller, while eggs are high in dietary cholesterol and people with Type 2 diabetes tend to have higher levels of the “bad” cholesterol, this study supports existing research that shows consumption of eggs has little effect on cholesterol levels.

The new study supports the assumed health benefits of eggs, including being a source of protein and micronutrients that support heart health.

The reason why eggs had such a bad reputation in the past is that egg yolks have lots of cholesterol, and high levels of bad (LDL) cholesterol in your blood increased the risk of getting heart disease.

Therefore, it seemed logical that avoiding cholesterol in your diet made sense. However, current research has shown that most of the cholesterol in our body is made by our liver which doesn’t come from cholesterol we eat. The liver is stimulated to make cholesterol primarily by saturated fat and trans fat in our diet, not dietary cholesterol.

A large egg contains only a small amount of saturated fat – about 1.5 grams.

Of course, what really matters is what you are eating with your eggs. For example, the saturated fat in butter, cheese, bacon, sausage, or muffins, raises your blood cholesterol much more than the cholesterol in your egg. Plus the highly refined “bad carbs” in white toast, pastries, and hash browns may also increase your risk of heart disease or stroke.

So choose healthy choices to eat with your eggs like mixing in fresh vegetables and herbs in your omelet or topping them with salsa. Eat whole-grain toast with avocado instead of white toast with butter.

So here is a healthy omelet recipe for you to cook this week. Enjoy!

Spinach and mushroom omelet

  • 2 cups washed baby spinach
  • ½ cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1 large garlic clove, minced
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
  • 2 eggs
  • 3 teaspoons low-fat milk
  • 2 teaspoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 teaspoons freshly grated parmesan

Read more about the study here.