Eating one egg a day can reduce risk of heart disease, study claims

Eggs are a very good source of protein, vitamins and essential fatty acids

Sabrina Barr
Tuesday 22 May 2018 11:51 BST

Eggs are regarded as being a fantastic source of several nutrients, including proteins, vitamins and essential fatty acids.

However, eating them on a daily basis can purportedly benefit your health not only in the short term, but also in the long run.

A recent study has claimed that eating one egg a day can drastically reduce your likelihood of developing cardiovascular disease in the future.

A team of researchers from China and the UK decided to explore the connection between frequency of egg consumption and risk of a number of heart-related diseases, such as cardiovascular disease, ischaemic stroke and major coronary events, which is when a person experience a sudden cardiac death or a heart attack.

The research group, led by Professor Liming Li and Dr Canqing Yu from the School of Public Health at Peking University Health Science Centre, analysed data from more than 400,000 adults in China aged between 30 and 79 years old.

The data, which was collected by the China Kadoorie Biobank study, originally gathered information from 512,891 adults from 10 different areas of China between 2004 and 2008.

The 416,213 participants chosen for this specific study had no prior experience of cancer, cardiovascular disease or diabetes.

All of the individuals included in the study, which was published in the journal Heart, were asked how often they eat eggs.

Following the initial study, their health was then documented during a follow-up period of around nine years.

Professor Li and Dr Yu decided to directly compare the results of the 13.1 per cent of participants who stated that they ate an egg every day to those of the 9.1 per cent who affirmed that they never or hardly ever consumed eggs.

They discovered that those who ate an egg every day had a 26 per cent reduced risk of suffering from a haemorrhagic stroke, which occurs when there’s bleeding in or around the brain.

The egg-eaters also had 28 per cent less chance of suffering from death caused by a haemorrhagic stroke and an 18 per cent reduced risk of dying from cardiovascular disease.

Furthermore, the study reported that they were 12 per cent less likely to develop ischaemic heart disease.

While there are a number of reasons why a person may develop heart disease that could have nothing to do with egg consumption, such as smoking and obesity, the authors of the study believe their results have displayed an apparent connection between the two.

“Our findings suggested that daily egg consumption was associated with lower risk of CVD [cardiovascular disease], IHD [ischaemic heart disease], MCE [major coronary events], haemorrhagic stroke and ischaemic stroke among Chinese middle-aged adults,” they concluded.

“Our findings contribute scientific evidence to the dietary guidelines with regard to egg consumption for the healthy Chinese adult."

Professor Nita Forouhi from the University of Cambridge pointed out that the overall diets of the participants should be taken into account when assessing the results of the study.

"In a Western context, if you eat eggs with lots of refined white bread, processed meats like bacon and sausages and sugar-rich ketchup, that is materially different to eating an egg with whole-grain bread and vegetables for instance," Professor Forouhi stated.

"This research like much of nutritional research is observational and not experimental, that is, it follows a large sample of adults over time for health endpoints but does not intervene by prescribing particular diets."

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