Study claims eating an egg a day can lower risk of heart disease

Up to one egg a day may have health benefits, the nine-year study found
Up to one egg a day may have health benefits, the nine-year study found

A major study of nearly half a million Chinese people has concluded that eating an egg a day may lead to a lower risk of heart disease.

A recent study by Peking University Health Science Centre has claimed that eating one egg a day can drastically reduce the likelihood of developing cardiovascular disease in the future.

The research group analysed data from 461,213 adults in China aged between 30 and 79 years old.

Overall, they ate an average of half an egg daily; about 9 percent of them avoided eggs altogether while 13 percent ate roughly one egg every day.

The conclusion, published in the journal Heart, found those who ate up to one a day had a 26% lower risk of haemorrhagic stroke, 28% lower risk of haemorrhagic stroke death and an 18% lower risk of cardiovascular disease death.

“Our findings suggested that daily egg consumption was associated with lower risk of CVD [cardiovascular disease], IHD [ischaemic heart disease], MCE [major coronary events], haemorrhagic stroke and ischaemic stroke among Chinese middle-aged adults,” the researchers concluded.

“Our findings contribute scientific evidence to the dietary guidelines with regard to egg consumption for the healthy Chinese adult.”

Professor Nita Forouhi, of the Medical Research Council epidemiology unit at the University of Cambridge, said: "The take home message of this research from a large study from China is that at the very least up to one egg a day is not linked with raised cardiovascular risk, and at best up to one egg a day may even have health benefits.

"The researchers accounted for many dietary and other behaviours in their analyses, but it is important to emphasise that eggs are not eaten in isolation, and overall healthy or unhealthy dietary patterns will always matter."

Eggs provide a wide range of important nutrients, including several that are found in only a limited number of other foods, such as vitamin D, iodine and long chain omega-3 fatty acids.

A paper published earlier this year highlights a raft of research showing how a number of key consumer groups could benefit from increased egg consumption.