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What about eggs?

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What about eggs?

June 2, 2024, 11:45 AM IST 

A frequently asked question is about eating eggs. Many vegetarians eat eggs because they are not fertilized, meaning no harm is caused to any animal. I initially mentioned that there are various reasons for adopting a Plant-Based Whole Food (PBWF) diet, one being the religious principle of Ahimsa, which promotes non-violence towards animals. Although this is not my primary reason for this group, I encourage you all to watch documentaries showing the conditions in poultry farms. After seeing them, you might reconsider eating eggs or chicken. However, in this post, I will focus solely on the health aspects.

Reasons to Avoid Eggs

1. Inflammation:

Eggs are inflammatory, and studies suggest they can increase the risk of dying from heart disease and strokes. According to to a research published in the journal “Circulation”, researchers conducted a systematic review of existing research on 27,000 participants and found that eating one egg per day substantially increases the risk of dying from heat disease.

2. IGF-1 Hormone & Cancer:

Egg whites are rich in IGF-1 (Insulin-like Growth Factor-1) hormone, which promotes the growth of cancer cells. In today’s society we all have tiny cancer cells floating in our body fluids. IGF-1 hormone promotes the growth in these cells.

This hormone can also promote angiogenesis, the formation of new blood vessels, which can lead to tumors. Specially Prostate and Colorectal cancers are linked to eggs.

3. Lack of Fiber:

Eggs contain no fiber, causing their nutrients to be absorbed quickly in the small intestines, leaving little for colon bacteria. This can lead to a leaky gut and autoimmune diseases as bacteria consume the mucosal layers of the colon.

4. Cholesterol:

Eggs are high in cholesterol (200mg in a medium-sized egg), raising serum cholesterol levels. Although the link between cholesterol and cardiovascular diseases is debated, it often leads to the prescription of statin drugs, which have harmful side effects. The number needed to treat (NNT) for statins is 217 for heart attacks and 313 for strokes, while the number needed to harm (NNH) is only 21, meaning one in 21 people experiences muscle loss from statins.

5. High Saturated Fat Content:

Eggs are 60% fat, mostly saturated fat, which makes them inflammatory and contributes to insulin resistance, leading to diabetes and other diseases. According to a study, published in British Journal of Nutrition, eating one or more eggs per day can increase the risk of getting diabetes by 60%.

6. Hygiene Concerns:

The conditions in which chickens are kept are often unhygienic, making eggs a risk for infectious diseases like salmonella and bird flu. Fully cooking eggs can reduce this risk, but many people consume partially cooked eggs.

Misleading Ads by Egg Industry

Due to their high cholesterol content, the egg industry has faced challenges in combating resistance to egg consumption. In the mid-1990s, the Federal Trade Commission took successful legal action, upheld by the Supreme Court, to stop the egg indusmmtry from making false and misleading claims about the health effects of eggs.

A video by Dr. Michael Greger  (posted at the end of this blog) highlights how the industry  became desperate, and why they could not legally claim that eggs are healthy or even safe according to the US government.

When multiple nutrients, which are often consumed together, are researched it becomes easy to achieve intended results by  structuring studies creatively.

Studies funded by the egg industry suggested that increased cholesterol intake did not cause additional harm, leading the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) to remove restrictions on eggs in 2015. However, the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) took no action and still considers cholesterol levels above 199 a disease to be treated with statin drugs. This shows a disconnect within the federal government.

The human body produces cholesterol in the liver, and it is an important nutrient. When dietary cholesterol is low, the liver compensates by producing more. The relationship between cholesterol levels and heart attacks is complex and still highly debated in the medical community.

A report by Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine analyzed the funding and findings of various studies and concluded:

“The percentage of industry-funded studies increased over time, from 0% in the 1950s to 60% in 2010-2019. More than 85% of the research studies, regardless of funding sources, showed that eggs have unfavorable effects on blood cholesterol. But 49% of industry-funded publications reported conclusions that conflicted with actual study results, compared with 13% of non-industry-funded trials.”

This issue has received significant attention on social media, reflecting the ongoing controversy over egg consumption. Posted below are relevant YouTube videos worth watching on the subject.

Who Says Eggs Aren’t Healthy or Safe?

Eggs vs Cigarettes in Atherosclerosis

Do Eggs Raise Cholesterol?

Eggs and Diabetes

Eggs and Arterial Function

To Read this article on Times of India click here

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