Patients With Diabetes: Let Them Eat Eggs

Charles P. Vega, MD


June 06, 2018

Hello. I'm Dr Charles Vega, and I am a clinical professor of family medicine at the University of California at Irvine. Welcome to Medscape Morning Report, our 1-minute news story for primary care.

Fifty years ago, the American Heart Association announced a dietary recommendation that people eat no more than three whole eggs per week.[1] In 2000, they revised that to one egg per day for healthy adults.[2] But should this apply to patients with diabetes, who have a higher risk for cardiovascular disease?

The results from a prospective, randomized controlled trial involving 140 adults provide an answer. Among overweight or obese patients with prediabetes or type 2 diabetes, those who ate 12 eggs per week or more had similar levels of cardiovascular disease markers as those who ate fewer than two eggs. Weight loss and glycemic control were also similar in the two groups.

This is not to suggest that patients with diabetes should not worry about cholesterol. But dietary cholesterol intake has a pretty small impact on serum cholesterol levels in most people. Eggs are a relatively cheap source of protein and a commonly eaten food. And this new study would suggest that you can safely tell your diabetes patients to have their eggs and eat them, too.


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