Eggs, a powerhouse of protein, are often suggested to be consumed every day. But a new research suggests that consuming one or more eggs daily can make one prone to an increased risk of type 2 diabetes by a whooping 60 per cent.
Published in the British Journal of Nutrition, researchers compared egg consumption with blood glucose levels in more than 8,000 participants from the China Health and Nutrition Survey. The study noted how participants who ate the most eggs were less physically active, had higher serum cholesterol levels, and had consumed more fat and animal protein.
As per the longitudinal study (1991-2009) led by the University of South Australia, the risk got even greater for women in comparison to men. The study mentioned how it could be attributed to oxidation and inflammation from choline found in egg yolks which hindered carbohydrate absorption from chemicals found in egg whites.
Eggs are one of the important components of breakfast in many households across the globe. It’s a great source of protein and contains half gram of carbohydrate, mentioned Neha Pathania, chief dietitian, Paras Hospitals, Gurugram.
“Eggs, especially whites, are the best quality protein available to us. It is unlikely that there is a causal relationship between eggs and diabetes,” said Dr Shaival Chandalia, Consultant Endocrinologist and Diabetologist, Bhatia Hospital Mumbai.
While the research yielded “inconclusive” results, the authors noted how the rise in egg consumption is related to the increased affordability of eggs in China, and an overall shift toward Westernised diets low in vegetables and high in meat and high-fat foods.
According to Mayo Clinic, “Chicken eggs are an affordable source of protein and other nutrients. They’re also naturally high in cholesterol. But the cholesterol in eggs doesn’t seem to raise cholesterol levels the way other cholesterol-containing foods do, such as trans fats and saturated fats.”
“However, if multiple eggs are consumed along with the yellow as well as other foods like butter, oil, and cheese then it can increase weight, cholesterol, and risk of diabetes. A safe and, in fact, beneficial amount is to have up to two egg whites a day. This is important in the Indian vegetarian diet which is deficient in protein,” said Dr Chandalia.
One large egg contains nearly 200 mg of cholesterol, asserted Pathania. “So, this can be detrimental for diabetic people. Therefore, the best way to consume eggs is to either boil them, and serve with a topping of salt, pepper, and, coriander leaves or you can make a vegetable omelette using two eggs. And make sure that you eat in moderation to avoid the side effects of eating eggs,” she said.