Cancel the cheese omelet. There are sobering news for egg lovers who have gladly gobbled up their favorite breakfast since dietrich guidelines for Americans 2015-2020 no longer limited how much dietary cholesterol or how many eggs they could eat.
A major new northwestern medical study reports adults who ate more eggs and dietary cholesterol had a significantly higher risk of cardiovascular disease and death from any cause.
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"The home message is really about cholesterol, which happens to be high in eggs and specifically egg yolks," says the corresponding study author Norrina Allen, associate professor in Prevention Medicine at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. "As part of a healthy diet, people need to consume lower amounts of cholesterol. People who consume less cholesterol have a lower risk of heart disease."  Egg yolks are one of the richest sources of dietary cholesterol among all commonly consumed foods. A large egg has 1
Other animal products, such as red meat, processed meat and high-milk dairy products (butter or whipped cream) also have high cholesterol content, said senior author Wenze Zhong, a post-doctoral in Northwestern Prevention Medicine.
Debate on disease
If eating dietary cholesterol or eggs is linked to cardiovascular disease and death has been discussed for decades. Eating less than 300 mg of dietary cholesterol per day was the guideline notification before 2015. However, the latest dietary guidelines omitted a daily limit on dietary cholesterol. The guidelines also include a weekly egg consumption as part of a healthy diet.
An adult in the United States averages 300 mg per day of cholesterol and eats about three or four eggs per week.
The survey finding means the current US dietary guidelines for dietary cholesterol and eggs may need to be evaluated, the authors said.
The proof of eggs has been mixed. Previous studies found that eggs did not increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. But these studies generally had a less diverse sample, shorter follow-up time and limited ability to adapt to other parts of the diet, Allen said.
"Our study showed if two people had exactly the same diet and the only difference in diet was eggs, then you could directly measure the effect of egg consumption on heart disease," Allen said. "We found cholesterol, regardless of source, was associated with an increased risk of heart disease.
Exercise, overall dietary quality and the amount and type of dietary fat did not change the relationship between dietary cholesterol and cardiovascular disease and death risk.
The study looked at pooled data on 29,615 American furious and ethnically diverse adults from six prospective cohort studies for up to 31 years of follow-up.
It was found that eating 300 mg of dietary cholesterol per day was associated with 17 percent higher risk of incidence of cardiovascular disease and 18 percent higher risk of serious deaths, cholesterol being the driving force independent of saturated fat consumption and other dietary fats
Should I Stop Eating Eggs?
Because of the study, people should keep low olesterol intake is low by reducing cholesterol-rich foods such as eggs and red meat in their diets.
But do not prevent eggs and other cholesterol-rich foods entirely from meals, Zhong said, since eggs and red meat are good sources of important nutrients such as important amino acids, iron and choline. Instead, you choose egg white instead of whole eggs or eat whole eggs in measure.
"We want to remind you that cholesterol is found in eggs, especially egg yolks, and it has a deleterious effect," Allen said, who cooked scrambled eggs for her children that morning. "Eat them in moderation."
Dietary intake calculation
Diet data was collected using food frequency issues or by taking a diet history. Each participant received a long list of what they had eaten for the previous year or month. The data was collected during a single visit. The study had up to 31 years of follow-up (median: 17.5 years), during which 5,400 cardiovascular diseases and 6,132 serious deaths were diagnosed.
One major limitation of the study is the participants' long-term eating habits were not assessed.
"We have a snapshot of what their eating patterns looked like," Allen said. "But we think they represent an appreciation of a person's diet intake. Yet, people may have changed their diet, and we can't tell it."
Other Northwestern authors include: Linda Van Horn, Marilyn Cornelis, Dr. John Wilkins, Dr. Hongyan Ning, Mercedes Carnethon, Dr. Philip Greenland, Lihui Zhao and Dr. Donald Lloyd-Jones.