A new study conducted by researchers from eLife explored some of the heart health benefits consumers can gain by eating eggs. The study showed that having just one egg per day may lower the risk of developing cardiovascular disease.
“Few studies have looked at the role that plasma cholesterol metabolism plays in the association between egg consumption and the risk of cardiovascular diseases, so we wanted to help address this gap,” said researcher Lang Pan.
Eggs may benefit good cholesterol
The researchers analyzed data from nearly 5,000 people enrolled in the China Kadoorie Biobank. The participants left blood samples and the researchers analyzed their plasma for 225 metabolites that could be linked to egg consumption. When the study began, over 3,400 participants had cardiovascular disease and nearly 1,400 didn’t.
Ultimately, the researchers identified a link between egg consumption and heart health. Participants who ate eggs on a regular basis had lower levels of potentially harmful metabolites and higher levels of beneficial metabolites. The opposite was also true; those who didn’t or rarely ate eggs had more metabolites in their blood linked with heart disease.
The study also showed that eating more eggs was linked with improvements in high-density lipoprotein (HDL), or “good” cholesterol. Participants who regularly ate eggs had higher levels of the apolipoprotein A1 protein, which helps build up HDL levels. It also helps absorb cholesterol from blood vessels and lowers the risk of blockages.
“Together, our results provide a potential explanation for how eating a moderate amount of eggs can help protect against heart disease,” said researcher Canqing Yu. “More studies are needed to verify the causal role that lipid metabolites play in the association between egg consumption and the risk of cardiovascular disease.”