Do eggs raise cholesterol ?

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For most of us, It was probably our parents that told us to only eat 2 eggs a day and not to exceed more than 8 a week. Now normally parents are annoyingly right, whatever it may be they always seem to have the right answer, in this instance though, the egg has come up trumps.

Let's face it, high levels of cholesterol are no good, we all know that but how many of us actually know what that means? Well here are some basic facts:


Poached or boiled are absolutely fine!

Cholesterol is produced by the body and also enters the body in foods.

High cholesterol is inheritable from a condition known as familial hypercholesterolemia.

The best way to reduce cholesterol is through lifestyle changes.

High cholesterol increases risk of heart disease and can lead to a heart attack.


Good or Bad Cholesterol?

'Good' cholesterol is also called High-Density Lipoprotein (HDL) this helps to remove fats and other substances from your arteries.
'Bad' cholesterol is Low-Density Lipoprotein (LDL) this type sticks to other fats and essentially clogs up your arteries.
Now if anyone has ever told you eggs are bad because they are high in cholesterol than I am afraid you were deceived. Yes they are high in cholesterol however they are high in HDL, this is the 'good' cholesterol. This does not have an impact on your blood cholesterol levels, in fact it actually helps decrease your overall cholesterol level. The American Heart Association (ASA) states that there are 185 milligrams of cholesterol in a medium sized egg , which is around 62% of your recommend daily allowance (RDA), however because a large amount of this amount is HDL then this 'good' cholesterol will help remove a majority of the overall amount.

Things to consider:

Eating an excessive amount of egg yolk or any other animal fat such as meat, will increase overall cholesterol as there is simply too much for your body to 'clean' from the arteries.
Some people have naturally higher levels of 'bad', cholesterol than others.
With this things in mind, as a guide I would recommend a maximum of 3 full eggs daily.The other recommendation is for you to be aware of how much overall cholesterol you naturally have in your bloodstream firstly. This can be checked with a standard blood test.

Because a large amount of the cholesterol is HDL cholesterol, exceeding the RDA by roughly 50% is not relative to overall cholesterol levels - as a large majority of this HDL will actually reduce cholesterol in general.

Plus eggs are a fantastic source of omega-3 which all dieticians will encourage you to have as part of a healthy diet.

Best,

Jonny

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