The egg debate has been long going for many years now since the 1960s. This is because of the fear that eggs might increase the cholesterol intake and thus increase the possibility of heart disease.
The latter is mostly fatal since most cases end up developing more overtime with issues such as obesity, high insulin tolerance, among other health problems.
In the 1960s, the general consensus agreed that eating 6 eggs per week was fine and it would not cause any kind of heart problems. However, this has been challenged recently with some ground breaking studies referring to the 6 egg limit as a mere myth.
It is true that eating more than one egg per day is not going to hurt your overall health, but what is the limit, more precisely, is 6 eggs per day healthy, and is it safe.
Lets us first try to understand the nutritional content of egg.
Nutritional content in 6 eggs:
For 6 eggs, you will be getting more than 36 grams of protein which is a very good amount. The fat content is more than 30 grams coming to almost half of the average fat intake for an average person. The cholesterol is off the charts with 1,120 mg which is more than three times the recommended total daily intake. Eggs don’t have any carbohydrates but they do have a considerable amount of micro nutrients with vitamin D being the highest at 65% of the daily intake.
Is 6 eggs crossing the limit?
The nutrition facts for 6 eggs is quite high for the fat intake.
One would have to stop consuming all animal products if they eat 6 eggs because it is so dense in cholesterol.
Eggs have two main types of omegas. There has to be a good balance between omega 3 and omega 6. However, omega 3 is usually more beneficial to the body.
This is because omega 3 helps with inflammation and it protects the connective tissue in the body. Omega 6 encourages inflammation and helps the immune system get a more responsive trigger in the body. Eggs have around 16 percent omega 6 while only a small amount of omega 3 exists in them.
Our bodies only need small amounts of omega 6, but with eating 6 eggs per day, the surplus of omega 6 overtime will definitely be detrimental to the body in ways that you may not see at first, but these issues build up overtime until they eventually become a very big problem you cannot avoid.
The 6 eggs is definitely crossing the line when it comes to the fat intake along with the omega 6 intake.
It’s not so much because of the cholesterol because our bodies will develop mechanisms that will help bind and oppose any surplus. Cholesterol is already produced by the body in the liver, so even if someone ends up eating too much cholesterol, it will be ejected by the body.
Keto diet and eggs:
The keto diet has been one of the trendiest diets out there, and eggs seem to be one of the main components of the diet.
The main premise of the diet is that by eating high fat, low carb, and medium protein, your body will start to use fat for fuel instead of using sugar and glycogen for energy.
Eggs do support that idea since they have a lot of fat, a good amount of protein, they are filling and they also have a great amount of vitamins.
Is 6 eggs a healthy amount?
6 eggs every day can be healthy for some people. However, this is not true for everyone. For athletic performance, eating 6 eggs can actually be beneficial since they have been proven to raise testosterone according to a study done recently.
This is not true for people who already have a genetic disposition to getting diabetes, high blood pressure and naturally high cholesterol levels in the body.
The protein intake of 6 eggs is really what makes the amount a good thing because you could use that protein if you are working out or if you are younger. If anything, egg consumption has drastically gone down.
6-12 eggs per day is even used in some unorthodox methods to increase testosterone. Some men use this to increase their sexual performance, increase appetite, sharpen focus, and strengthen bone, all of which eggs have been known to do in some studies.
Whether 6 eggs on a daily basis is healthy or not completely depends on your already existing habits.
If you work out regularly 3-6 times per week, if your diet is clean from sugar, fried foods, pastries, bread or other wheat based products, then 6 eggs per day will supplement your healthy habits. ‘…egg being a nutrient dense, cheaply available, and commonly consumed food, needs to be assessed on its fatty acid composition, for improving its overall health components. Consumption of omega-3 fatty acids has majorly been associated with improved health.. etc’.
The risk of 6 eggs:
The risk of 6 eggs lies in the overconsumption of omega 6 and not necessarily in cholesterol intake. Our bodies need a balanced amount of the three omegas in the body, and they don’t need much from omega 6. However, eggs are packed with omega 6, but they have a very limited amount of omega 3. This disrupts the conversion of omegas in the body and can lead to some digestive problems.
One of the side effects of eating 6 eggs per day is the sulfuric content. You might notice that by eating this many eggs, your body will start to release gas that smells like rotten eggs. This is because of the sulfuric content in the eggs that might be referred to as protein gas by the general public. This can be an annoying issue and can lead to slower metabolism if your diet is not balanced.
The general risk of eating six eggs has nothing to do with just eating 6 eggs, but it has to do with the other areas of your diet. For instance, if a person who is barely active, has a sedentary jobs, eats normally like other people, does not care about the balance of nutrition in the body, then they should not be eating that many eggs in the first place because it will create all sorts of hazard in the body.
Eating that many eggs should be reserved to people who have their overall health taken care of in terms of their athletic performance, dietary choices and the general micro and macro nutrient intake.
Eating 6 eggs per day is definitely not something that will kill you or cause long term harm, but it certainly won’t be an easy trip if your diet already suffers. 6 eggs per day would work well if the person is healthy in other areas and does not have any possible complications. ‘The current study found that the significant associations of dietary cholesterol consumption with incident CVD and all-cause mortality were independent of fat amount and quality of the diet. These findings are consistent with the evidence that a reduction of dietary cholesterol intake, in addition to iso-caloric replacement of saturated fat by unsaturated fat’
Overall, eggs are very nutritious and they should be consumed with caution. Eating anywhere from one to three eggs per day every day is definitely healthy and can improve your bodily functions. However, when starting to get beyond 6 eggs, things get tricky because of the overall micro nutrient balance in the body. There is definitely something has too many eggs, one should not rely solely on eggs but instead get their nutrition from various sources such as other proteins and vegetables along with seeds and nuts.
Eggs are some of the best foods out there for taste and health, it is recommended that one should eat them moderately because of the rich content in the yolk and full protein in the white.
Eating more than 6 eggs should not be considered by someone with predisposition to diseases and other complications or those who are not active.
Innes, J. K., & Calder, P. C. (2018). Omega-6 fatty acids and inflammation. Prostaglandins, Leukotrienes and Essential Fatty Acids, 132, 41–48. doi:10.1016/j.plefa.2018.03.004
Patterson, E., Wall, R., Fitzgerald, G. F., Ross, R. P., & Stanton, C. (2012). Health Implications of High Dietary Omega-6 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids. Journal of Nutrition and Metabolism, 2012, 1–16. doi:10.1155/2012/539426
Khan, S. A., Khan, A., Khan, S. A., Beg, M. A., Ali, A., & Damanhouri, G. (2017). Comparative study of fatty-acid composition of table eggs from the Jeddah food market and effect of value addition in omega-3 bio-fortified eggs. Saudi Journal of Biological Sciences, 24(4), 929–935. doi:10.1016/j.sjbs.2015.11.001
Zhong, V. W., Van Horn, L., Cornelis, M. C., Wilkins, J. T., Ning, H., Carnethon, M. R., … Allen, N. B. (2019). Associations of Dietary Cholesterol or Egg Consumption With Incident Cardiovascular Disease and Mortality. JAMA, 321(11), 1081. doi:10.1001/jama.2019.1572
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