Eggs Good or Bad?

Eggs May Not Be Bad — but Control the Cholesterol in Your Diet

The topic “Eggs good or bad” have been subject to lots of debate due to their high cholesterol content. Some think that their content of other nutrients and associated health benefits far outweighs the risks. But then not all agree with it. Specific group of specialists believe that one should avoid eggs entirely.

Good and bad about eggs

One of the good things about eggs is a high content of protein in egg-white, with single egg-white containing about 4 gm of high-quality protein. Yes, not all proteins are similar, and proteins in egg-white are closest to what the human body needs, thus having a high amino-acid score. Egg-white has zero content of carbs, fats, or other nutrients.

The more controversial part of the egg is the yolk. It has 2.5 gm of high-quality protein, minerals, vitamins (especially group B), omega-3 fatty acids, with only a small amount of carbs. But all these good things come with a high content of saturated fats (1.6 gm in single egg yolk), and about 184 mg of cholesterol.

Thus, for the question eggs good or bad, some people think that egg is too nutritious to neglect. But then other groups of specialists feel that it has too much bad cholesterol and saturated fats.

From Indian perspectives, things become even more complicated. Indian diet is deficient in high-quality proteins as they do not consume much animal products. Thus eggs seem to be an excellent source of proteins. But on the other hand, Indians are more prone to heart diseases (in comparison to Europeans), especially if they consume too much cholesterol. Thus, it becomes even more difficult to say whether eggs are good or bad for the Indian population.

Cholesterol controversy

There were times when everyone was speaking badly about cholesterol when all medical specialists agreed that it leads to blocked arteries and heart attack. However, in recent years things have changed, and the whole cholesterol theory has become controversial.

Each body cell needs cholesterol. All cell walls are made of cholesterol. The human brain is also high in cholesterol. It is estimated that about 20-25% of all cholesterol is in the brain. Cholesterol is also needed for the production of many hormones. Creation of all sex hormones involves cholesterol.

In fact, cholesterol is so vital for your health that the human body is capable of producing all the cholesterol it needs. Due to its essential role in health, human-body cannot depend on its external supply.

Some researchers think that dietary cholesterol intake is unnecessary and may harm health. They think that one should avoid it altogether.

A recent study published in the journal JAMA only made the controversy worse. It pooled the data regarding egg consumption from various studies with a total of about 30,000 participants and follow-up of about 18 years. The study states that even half an egg a day significantly increases the risk of cardiovascular disease.

The study above contraindicates the finding in the study published a few years back in an equally prestigious journal BMJ Open. That study pooled data from other studies involving a total of 68,000 older adults. And the study did not find any association between high cholesterol and mortality due to cardiovascular events.

Eggs Good or Bad?

Critics of the study published in the JAMA says that increased risk of heart diseases was perhaps not due to eggs, rather due to other food items consumed along with them. People often eat high-fat, fried food products with eggs like fried potatoes. In countries like India, people may eat fried eggs along with fried bread (paratha).

Researchers think that eggs, when eaten in moderation, are not that bad. The important thing is how you are consuming eggs or with what food products you are consuming eggs. It is better to eat them boiled and avoid eating fried foods with them.

Indian Heart and Stroke Association recommends keeping daily cholesterol intake below the level of 200 mg a day. It means limiting the consumption of whole egg to just one boiled egg a day.

Hence for the question “Eggs good or bad,” you can eat many egg-whites a day as it is high in good quality protein. But limit the intake of whole egg or egg yolk to about one a day.

Published by

Dr. Aleksandar Grbovic

Hi! My name is Aleksandar Grbovic. I’m a radiology resident with five years of experience in General Medicine. As a medical writer, I have only one goal in my mind - to bridge the gap between doctors and patients point of view by breaking down complex medical topics and presenting them in lay people language. Knowing that my writing might help someone out there connect the dots is what keeps me motivated.

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