Eggs Improve Bad Cholesterol
Many people steer clear of eating eggs altogether. However, what they may not know is that eggs do not cause an increase in cholesterol, nor do they increase the risk of heart disease.
With the high number of people in northern
Thus, experiments were conducted in order to learn the effect whole eggs, or an equivalent amount in egg whites, had on cholesterol levels in children.
- 29 girls and 25 boys were tested
- Subjects ranged in ages 8-12
- Subjects were randomly assigned to two groups: whole eggs or egg whites consumption
- After 30 days in one period, along with a three-week washout period, the subjects were switched to the alternate testing
- LDL levels increased after consuming two eggs a day, but decreased when broken down by subclasses of LDL cholesterol
- Eating two eggs a day helped maintain LDL/HDL cholesterol levels
Source: American Journal of Clinical Nutrition October, 2004;80(4):855-861
Another Reason Why Eggs Actually Lower the Risk of Heart Disease
Little known nutrient Betaine shows benefit.
Although folic acid and to a lesser extent vitamins B-6 and B-12, are known to be able to reduce levels of homocysteine, researchers from the Netherlands report of another nutrient-betaine, found mostly in eggs and liver also has this capability.
They note that elevated plasma total homocysteine concentrations are considered a risk factor for giving birth to a child with neural tube defects and for cardiovascular disease.
Just like folic acid, betaine facilitates the remethylation of homocysteine into methionine. However, the researchers note that ” … the folate-dependent remethylation takes place in all cells, whereas the betaine-dependent remethylation reaction is mainly confined to the liver.”
According to the authors, eggs and liver are the best food sources of betaine.
Additionally, they note that betaine has been shown to substantially decrease homocysteine levels in patients with a condition known as homocystinuria, and they therefore theorized that it could have the same benefit in healthy patients as well.
· Researchers looked at 15 healthy patients aged 18 to 35 years, who were given six grams of betaine daily (two times per day at three grams) for three weeks.
· Blood samples were collected after an overnight fast at the start, after two weeks, and at the end of the study at three weeks.
· At the study’s start, the mean total plasma homocysteine level was 10.9 µmol/L.
· The six grams of betaine decreased this level at two weeks by 0.9 µmol/L or slightly greater than 8 percent, although after three weeks by 0.6 µmol/L or 5.5 percent.
The authors conclude that “Betaine supplementation decreases plasma total homocysteine concentrations in healthy volunteers.” However, the extent of the decrease is much smaller in healthy volunteers than in patients with homocystinuria. In such patients, with plasma total homocysteine concentrations above 50 µmol/L, betaine supplementation significantly lowered plasma total homocysteine concentrations, by up to 75 percent.”
However, they note that “The homocysteine-lowering effect seems smaller than that established by interventions with folic acid.”
Betaine, also known as trimethylglycine, is produced by the body from choline and also from the amino acid glycine.
Source: Archives of Internal Medicine September 11, 2000;160