Why do eggs have a bad rap?

By Thom Underwood - April 9, 2019

In the late 70s, eggs got a bad reputation because health practitioners discovered that high amounts of cholesterol in the blood could increase our risk of heart disease. Physicians of that era thought (incorrectly, it turns out) that eating high-cholesterol foods would significantly increase blood cholesterol, so they began advising their patients to stop eating foods high in cholesterol, like eggs, which have 200 milligrams.

In recent years, however, research has provided us with a more accurate understanding of the difference between dietary cholesterol (in foods we eat) and blood cholesterol (the amount of cholesterol our bodies make). That is, 80 percent of our blood cholesterol is manufactured by our liver and our small intestine – not from the foods we eat.

Today, we know that blood cholesterol is not affected very much by dietary cholesterol. In fact, foods high in saturated fat, trans-fat and processed sugar are much more of a cholesterol-raising concern. And our own personal blood cholesterol levels are affected by genetics, as well as age and gender.

All of this means that if you like eggs and they like you back, you’ll be glad to know they have been eggs-onerated and are back from eggs-ile. Eggs contain NO trans-fat, and a very small amount of saturated fat, making them a great source of protein (6 grams) for healthy people. (People with diabetes and heart disease are still cautioned to limit their egg intake.) Quite simply, as Dr. Mark Hyman states in his new book, What the Heck Should I Eat?, “Eating eggs doesn’t cause heart attacks.”

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