Eggs & Cholesterol
Do I have to limit my egg consumption because of eggs’ cholesterol content? Not necessarily.
First, a kind word for cholesterol. Despite all the bad press it’s been getting, cholesterol plays a very important role in maintaining good health. It is critical to many of the body’s metabolic functions, such as absorbing fat-soluble vitamins from food, and the production of hormones.
Our liver produces enough cholesterol naturally that we do not need to supplement it through the foods we eat. A healthy diet limits the daily intake of cholesterol to 300 mg.
So, what about eggs and cholesterol? Egg yolks do contain cholesterol, about 190 mg per yolk. Eggs also contain a low amount of saturated fat (about 1.5 g) and zero trans fats. Research has shown that eating an egg a day does not always affect the body’s LDL (“bad”) cholesterol level.
However, if you have high cholesterol levels it may be a good idea to reduce your intake of eggs and other cholesterol-containing foods in order to reduce your risk factors for heart disease.
Researchers have found that rising cholesterol numbers are more likely to be caused by eating saturated and trans fats. Always choose lean cuts of meat, low-fat dairy products and remove the skin from poultry to limit your saturated fat intake.
If you aren’t sure if a specific food contains cholesterol, consider its source. If the source had a heart, then the food will naturally contain cholesterol.