Mythbusters!

To be updated shortly covering the following topics below:

Carbs Make You Fat

Thermogenic Activity of Food and Eating

Eating late at night makes you fat

Dairy makes you fat

Low GI is better for fat loss

Eggs and Cholesterol

YEARS ago people where often told that they needed to limit the number of eggs they eat because they contain dietary cholesterol. We know now that this is not the case -> and most of the cholesterol in your body is synthesised BY your body (liver). This means dietary cholesterol actually has very little impact on total cholesterol (long term studies have shown that there really is no real risk of increased blood cholesterol and increased vascular disease with higher dietary cholesterol intake when assessed independently of other associated lifestyle measures).

So…. What is more important?

  • First on the list is genetics…!!! So someone with a family history of high cholesterol is much more at risk of developing it themselves (that is – something that causes your body to produce more cholesterol than others… or not ‘lose’ cholesterol as fast as it should).
  • Then you move down to things like saturated fat intake (the higher this is, the higher cholesterol tends to be); Metabolic risk factors (eg: insulin resistance/ high blood glucose); and a generally Poor lifestyle (eg: smoking, lack of exercise, poor diet).

What if you DO have a family history of cholesterol?

The advice here is to ‘limit’ but not exclude sources of dietary cholesterol. Reason being is that although dietary cholesterol doesn’t hugely contribute to total cholesterol – it will still have a ‘small’ impact… and if you are already at high risk, you don’t want to add fuel to the fire!

Eggs are Great because?

Eggs are an excellent, nutrient dense source of protein – with an average egg having about 7g (3g in the yolk and 4g in the white). The type of protein found in eggs is also of HIGH bioavailability and very good quality – meaning it is used very well in the body as a source of amino acids for growth, repair and energy! It also means that eating eggs will help in calorie controlled diets – because this protein helps with satiety and allows you to stay fuller for longer (so you don’t reach for the chocolate bar at mid-afternoon! :p ).

The egg yolk is where most of the nutrients are (the white is mainly protein)… And here you’ll find a good supply of Choline (which is very important for memory, and used for nervous system/ brain development in pregnancy)… And also some very important pigments from the food the hen eats – and these are carotenoids (as above), Leutein and Zeaxanthin. These are very important for nervous tissue and (as above) they have been shown to help prevent macula degeneration and cataracts (again with the eyes!!!).

Eggs are also high in:

  • Vitamin B2 and B12 (essential in energy production in cells, red cell turn over & the formation of red cells)
  • The fat soluble vitamins: Vitamin D, Vitamin A, and Vitamin E
  • Iodine
  • Zinc
  • Selenium

Final notes:

  1. Careful about allergy… being a protein source, eggs are known to cause reactions in some people!
  2. Don’t get fooled by brown v’s white shells. This is simply a reflection of the pigment of the hen (breed/ colour etc…) and doesn’t mean it is any more or less wholesome than the plain old white variety.
  3. If you are one of these people to chow down on raw egg whites… you might want to stop. Not only is there a salmonella risk (for certain countries especially so) but raw egg whites are not absorbed well by the body, and they also contain a nutrient binder in them which decreases the ability of your body to take up biotin and can result in deficiency.
  4. Consider your choice in eggs. Although cheaper, battery cages are barbaric and senseless. Getting free range or eggs from small farms is not only is it better for the hen, but it is healthier for the environment and you get a warm fuzzy feeling that you are not causing unnecessary suffering too.