Health Corner

eggs with bread for breakfast



At risk of heart disease? Well, new research indicates that the cholesterol in egg yolks does not eggactly increase our risk for heart disease nearly as much as we’ve been led to believe. (Editor’s note: I don’t know about all these egg puns)

For the last forty years we’ve been taught that eggs were bad news for our blood cholesterol and our heart, leading some frightened consumers to limit themselves to no more than one egg a week.

While eggs are undoubtedly high in cholesterol (about 186mg per egg) it is no longer taken for granted that the type of cholesterol in eggs is bad for our health. Talk about an eggsageration!



In 1992 leading nutrition researchers from the South African University of Potchefstroom, inveggstigated (Editor: I do like that one… maybe no more though) the effect of eating three to 14 eggs per week. They eggamined biochemical risk markers of coronary heart disease in 70 young men who also ate a high-fat diet.

In the run-in phase of this study, all participants were required to eat three eggs per week for two months. During the five-month eggsperimental phase that followed, the control subjects continued to eat three eggs per week, while the two eggsperimental groups of subjects ate either seven or 14 eggs per week.

None of the risk markers for heart disease, such as lipoprotein or coagulation factors, were different in the control subjects or the two egg-eating eggsperimental (Editor: Really? You can’t use ‘eggsperimental’ 3 times in 2 sentences!) groups. The authors of the study recommended that dietary advice to prevent cardiovascular disease, should emphasise reducing total fat intake, rather than to concentrate only on dietary cholesterol intake in general and eggs in particular.


NEW ZEALAND’S HEART FOUNDATION EGGREES! (Editor: headings are to remain strictly pun-free!)

In January 2016 the New Zealand Heart Foundation (NZHF) issued a paper Eggs and the Heart which turned out to be very good news for egg consumers and the egg industry. In the paper the NZHF recommended that people who are at risk of heart disease can now eat up to six eggs per week instead of the previously recommended three. And what’s even more intereggsting (Editor: Oh you’re not even trying now) is that they place no restriction on egg consumption on the general population.

In this paper, the NZHF concluded that eggs can be part of a heart-healthy diet and are a good source of protein, carotenoids, vitamin D, vitamin B12, selenium and choline.

Even when taking into account the reaction of hyper-responders to dietary cholesterol (eg type 2 diabetics) the increases in blood cholesterol were still small.

The NZHF recommends that people who are at increased risk for heart disease (including type 2 diabetics) can safely eat up to six eggs per week, and that generally, healthy members of the population need not restrict their egg intake, but should rather concentrate on healthy eating habits.

Care should be taken to reduce unhealthy foods generally eaten with eggs, like bacon and sausages, refined white bread and butter and large amounts of salt. Fruit, vegetables and whole grains are recommended, as well as sources of healthy fats like avocadoes, nuts, seeds and oily fish.


For personalised and professional nutritional advice, including a full dietary plan , make an appointment with LifeForce’s own eggscelent and eggsemplary (Editor: I quit!) Naturopath, Mel. Call 82892800 for an appointment today!