New research done on half a million of Chinese people suggests there are great health benefits to be reaped from eating eggs daily. One egg a day, to be precise, may reduce the risk of suffering heart disease and strokes.
Of course, eating eggs daily is not enough for the health benefits to be obvious. According to experts quoted by the BBC, doing this every day has to happen within the frame of a healthy lifestyle to be truly beneficial.
“One can deliberate on the many limitations and caveats of nutritional research, but the take-home message of this research from a large study from China is that at the very least up to one egg a day is not linked with raised cardiovascular risk, and at best up to one egg a day may even have health benefits,” said Prof Nita Forouhi, of the University of Cambridge.
The study was published in the journal “Heart”.
Eating eggs daily used to be a no-no
The study’s conclusions haven’t always been common knowledge. In fact, until recently, we all thought that eating eggs daily or too many at once can actually be harmful to our bodies. For one, we thought that they raised our cholesterol levels and also be difficult to process by livers. Also, egg lovers everywhere, like me, were worried about the dangers of salmonella.
Eggs are actually pretty healthy, once you look at all the nutrients they carry. They are full of protein, Vitamins A, D, B and B12, folate, and iodine. But they also have two compounds called lutein and zeaxanthin, which help prevent eye damage during the aging process.
What are the recommendations?
You can have one, even two eggs on a daily basis, according to Dr. Frankie Phillips, of the British Dietetic Association, quoted by the BBC. But of course, as with any other food, it’s best not to overdo it, because one of the most important parts of a healthy diet is variety – having as many nutrients in your meals as possible. And too much protein in your diet might affect your kidneys.
As for the cholesterol scare, The British Heart Foundation had recommended the eating of at most three eggs a week. But that was 11 years ago, before the new studies. The British National Health Service says that “although eggs contain some cholesterol, the amount of saturated fat we eat has more of an effect on the amount of cholesterol in our blood than the cholesterol we get from eating eggs”.
Fried, poached or boiled?
This means that you should limit the times you fry your eggs (because this increases the fat you absorb from them). So, if you’re a huge fan of fried eggs, try to alternate between frying, boiling eggs, and also poaching them.
When it comes to salmonella, you’re only risking that if you tend to cook runny eggs. But even that risk is now significantly lower. Don’t buy eggs with cracks in them, and store them in the refrigerator, in a dry place.