A Recent Report Claims Men Who Eat Eggs May Die Early, But Is It True?
There are various reports floating around found in news papers and the ‘net regarding a strange new study on eggs being correlated to a higher risk of dying early. For example, the Reuters coverage was called “Men who eat eggs may be at higher risk if dying early.”
“But wait, studies and articles you have posted in the past showed eggs had little relation to heart disease and I thought eggs were fine” you say! People reading just the title of these reports might mistakenly conclude “so eating eggs does cause heart disease!” But therein lies the rub, but let me continue before we get to that…the Reuters report for example, states
” Eggs are rich in cholesterol, which in high amounts can clog arteries and raise the risk of heart attack and stroke.”
Note the tricky and very misleading language in the above; the report is making the association to eggs which are rich in cholesterol + high levels of (serum!) cholesterol is associated with an increased rate of CVD which then leads the reader to conclude (and how could they not from the above!) that the cholesterol content of eggs = high serum cholesterol which = an increased risk of CVD. They have made a big leap there and did it so subtly that most people will miss it…
Problem is, the majority of the data does not find dietary cholesterol intakes have a major effect on serum cholesterol levels in most people and eating eggs has not been found to increase rates of CVD…
But wait, here’s where it gets really strange and why the long lead up from me. The report states
” Egg consumption was not associated with (heart attack) or stroke,”
So why make the statements regarding cholesterol, CVD, and eggs, when they didn’t die from those related issues? It’s unclear, but at the very end of the report they finally add up the variables the eggs were actually associated to which may explain the results of this study:
” Men who ate the most eggs also were older, fatter, ate more vegetables but less breakfast cereal, and were more likely to drink alcohol, smoke and less likely to exercise”
Hmmmm. What we appear to have here is perhaps a text book example where correlation does not = causation, and those who ate more eggs had lifestyle differences from those who ate less eggs which may be responsible for the increased death rates. The problem is, the average person is not going to see that, and reports such as this do nothing to help that fact.
The average reader is going to read this and conclude ” maybe I should eat less eggs.” What they should conclude, at least from the results of this study and report is “I need to keep my bodyfat under control, drink alcohol in moderation, don’ t smoke and exercise more more.”
Bottom line here is, this study and the reports that follow, should have no bearing on your decision to eat eggs.