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  • Sophia Kamveris, MS, RD

Are Eggs In or Out?

Are you a little confused as to the latest recommendations for eating eggs?? Yup, they did it again! They have changed their minds as to the recommendations to include eggs in your diet.

I’ve been a dietitian for awhile now and the general, heart healthy recommendations regarding cholesterol consumption has always been to limit daily cholesterol to no more than 300 milligrams (mg) a day, which is approximately the amount in one extra large egg. The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans changed that suggestion and there was no longer a restriction placed on daily limits of dietary cholesterol and, especially, egg intake.

But, a recent study in JAMA (published March 2019) that analyzed data from six United States cohort studies and covering a total of 29,615 people and spanning a median of 17.5 years data (collected between March 25, 1985, and August 31, 2016) has linked a higher cholesterol consumption with a higher risk of incident cardiovascular disease (CVD). In fact, the research found that an additional intake of 300 mg of dietary cholesterol per day was associated with a 17 percent higher risk of cardiovascular disease and 18 percent higher risk of death from any cause.

Dr Robert Eckel, Director of the Lipid Clinic at the University of Colorado Hospital, and a physician I have had the pleasure of meeting at the Cardiometabollic Congress conferences held in Boston, has commented on this study. In a recent editorial to the findings, he states: “This report is far more comprehensive, with enough data to make a strong statement that eggs and overall dietary cholesterol intake remain important in affecting the risk of CVD and more so the risk of all-cause mortality.”

It looks like these results will prompt reconsideration of the dietary guidelines going forward. Stay tuned. In the meanwhile, load up on egg whites, avocado or veggies, and a sprinkle of some aged cheddar cheese for a yummy omelet at breakfast!


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