Eggs & the Great Cholesterol Myth
You've all heard it, right? Eggs are TERRIBLE for your cholesterol and should be avoided at ALL costs. See an egg? RUN AWAY!!! We're here to tell you that the great cholesterol myth is, well, just that – a myth. It's not true. Eggs are pretty much the perfect food. Don't believe us? A 2011 study in the journal, “Food Chemistry”, found that regular egg consumption may be associated with a reduced risk of cardiovascular disease AND cancer because of eggs high levels of antioxidants. Several studies have shown that eggs help lower blood pressure. And in addition to the antioxidants, eggs pack a wallop of protein and nutrients in one low-calorie, low-carb, cheap, and easy to eat package!
“Wait, hold up!”, you may be saying. “Aren't eggs REALLY high in cholesterol though? How can any of this be reasonable?”. Yes, eggs contain a high amount of cholesterol. One large egg has about 200 mg of cholesterol. BUT, a few things...
1. There's little-to-no relation between dietary cholesterol and higher blood cholesterol levels (aka dietary cholesterol isn't bound to blood cholesterol).
2. You make cholesterol! Your liver makes 3-6 times more cholesterol than you can get by eating eggs.
3. You NEED some cholesterol. Cholesterol is vital for the production of steroid hormones like testosterone and to help build & repair cells.
So yes, eggs are high in cholesterol, but that doesn't mean eating them makes your cholesterol levels go up. Oh, and the risk of cardiovascular disease that's typically associated with eggs? That's more due to the typical foods eaten at breakfast WITH the eggs – bacon, sausage, potatoes fried in oil, cheese, etc. Eggs have seriously gotten a bad rap.
Look, we're not saying to go out and eat a carton of eggs a day. (PLEASE don't do that!) Like everything else is life, moderation is key. Most healthy people can eat up to seven eggs a week with no increase in their risk of heart disease. Some studies have shown that this level of egg consumption may actually prevent some types of strokes. And a 2012 study that covered a bunch of other studies found that people with high cholesterol that ate eggs in moderation had NO increases in cholesterol when compared to people who cut eggs entirely out of their diets. Also remember the recommended daily limits on cholesterol in your food:
- if you're healthy, consume no more than 300mg of cholesterol a day
- if you have diabetes, high cholesterol or heart disease, limit the daily cholesterol intake to no more than 200 mg a day
Still concerned about cholesterol though? Consider egg whites and egg substitute products. They're still loaded with protein but with even less cholesterol. Cook one egg yolk and pair it with two egg whites for the perfect combo of nutrients and vitamins! Also, cook your eggs fully. Eggs contain biotin which helps maintain strong nails and hair. The problem is, biotin becomes inactivated by another component in eggs called avidin. The solution: Cook the egg fully to inactivate the avidin and better absorb the biotin!
Here at Top Chef Meals, we have a great variety of breakfasts that include eggs – from quiche to egg white meals to meals with whole eggs. Ordering a few of these for the week means you can keep yourself healthy in less time than ever! Just defrost and pop 'em in the microwave according to the heating instructions and you have a chef-prepared, high quality, delicious meal that makes the perfect start to your day. Browse our site to find your favorite meals or give us a call at (800) 616-8044 if you have questions. Eat well!