Diabetes

Updated 15 February 2017

Eggs may up diabetes risk

People who sit down to a daily breakfast of eggs may have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, new research suggests.

0

People who sit down to a daily breakfast of eggs may have an increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes, new research suggests.

In a long-term study of 57 000 US adults, researchers found that those who ate an egg a day were 58 – 77% more likely than non-egg-eaters to develop type 2 diabetes.

The findings, published in the journal Diabetes Care, do not necessarily mean that eggs themselves put people on a path to diabetes, according to the researchers. But they do suggest it is wise to limit your egg intake.

"Based on the current data, our recommendations would be to consume eggs in moderation, and not to exceed six eggs per week," said lead researcher Dr Luc Djousse, of Harvard Medical School in Boston.

Cholesterol may play a role
The study does not explain exactly why eggs are linked to diabetes, but cholesterol may play a role. The study participants' daily cholesterol intake was also related to diabetes risk, and when the researchers factored this in, the relationship between egg intake and diabetes weakened.

In animal studies, high-fat diets have been shown to raise levels of blood sugar and the sugar-regulating hormone insulin - suggesting a way that a cholesterol-heavy diet might promote diabetes.

According to Djousse, it's important for people at risk of type 2 diabetes - due to factors like family history and obesity - to pay attention to their overall cholesterol intake, and not just the cholesterol from eggs.

Even more important, he noted, is a focus on overall health - maintaining a normal weight, exercising regularly and eating a well-balanced diet - rather than on any one food or nutrient. He pointed out that eggs also contain important nutrients like protein, vitamins and minerals, and "good" unsaturated fats. – (Reuters Health, February 2009)

Read more:
Egg-breakfast best for weight loss
Too many eggs up risk of death

 

Read Health24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
0 comments
Comments have been closed for this article.

Ask the Expert

Diabetes expert

Dr. May currently works as a fulltime endocrinologist and has been in private practice since 2004. He has a variety of interests, predominantly obesity and diabetes, but also sees patients with osteoporosis, thyroid disorders, men's health disorders, pituitary and adrenal disorders, polycystic ovaries, and disorders of growth. He is a leading member of several obesity and diabetes societies and runs a trial centre for new drugs.

Still have a question?

Get free advice from our panel of experts

The information provided does not constitute a diagnosis of your condition. You should consult a medical practitioner or other appropriate health care professional for a physical exmanication, diagnosis and formal advice. Health24 and the expert accept no responsibility or liability for any damage or personal harm you may suffer resulting from making use of this content.

* You must accept our condition

Forum Rules