Online news feeds, morning programs and other sources in North America are airing some version of this headline: “Egg yolks are as bad for you as cigarettes”. Dr. David Spence and colleagues from the University of Western Ontario in Canada conducted the research that ‘inspired’ these headlines. Spence and his team’s results state that eating egg yolks accelerates placquing of arteries in a manner similar to smoking cigarettes.
Spence: “What we have shown is that with aging, plaque builds up gradually in the arteries of Canadians, and egg yolks make it build up faster – about two-thirds as much as smoking.” For more click here.
These results have been taken way out of context in the media. Here’s what you may not know: The large-scale study by Spence et al was conducted on 1200+ adults (men and women) that were already undergoing some form of vascular treatment. This means that they were already at high risk. The average age of the study subjects was 61 years. The study did not take into consideration the role of exercise in enhancing health and other measures to reduce cholesterol intake.
Basically the results are just validating what we already know. Everything in moderation. Reducing your intake of eggs becomes particularly important if you are older and already at risk for cardio vascular disease.
Eggs seem to be one of those foods that always gets a bad rap. It’s too bad. Eggs are a great source of protein and can be an important part of a healthy diet. As a family, we discussed this study this morning (and the media mania over it). AND we did it over a delicious breakfast of omelettes made by our daughter Tanya. Here’s the recipe! (We used feta cheese)