Effects of Eggs on Blood Lipids: A New Look at the Evidence

Apr 16, 2018

A new meta-analysis helps clear up conflicting trial data and supports what we know about eggs and serum cholesterol.



Eggs and Cholesterol: What's the Bottom Line? Experts agree that egg consumption has little impact on serum cholesterol but trial results are inconsistent, even contradictory.



A Brief Overview of Eggs. Eggs have enjoyed a nutritional rebound after several decades of worry about their cholesterol content. A good source of protein that is low in calories and high in vitamins and nutrients, the AHA supports consumption of an egg a day for healthy adults.



Meta-analysis of Egg Consumption and Dyslipidemia. The study was conducted after the year 2000, when the cholesterol moratorium was essentially lifted, and included subjects of all ages; the majority of studies looked a whole egg consumption and average weekly consumption was 4 eggs.




Eggs not Linked to Increased Triglycerides and LDL/HDL. There was no significant effect observed on triglyceride levels or on TC/HDL or LDL/HDL ratios. 



Clinical Implications. Increased TC, LDL, and HDL linked to egg consumption may contribute only a small amount to CVD risk, compared to other modifiable lifestyle risk factors.



Take Home Points

• Overall results from a meta-analysis of RCTs found that people who eat eggs had higher levels of total cholesterol, LDL, and HDL than those who did not eat eggs.

• Overall, egg consumption was not linked to higher levels of TG, TC/HDL ratio, and LDL/HDL ratio; higher levels did not increase these values.

• Egg consumption may have only a small contribution to CVD risk, but further studies are needed.