Eggs & Diabetes

Eggs & Diabetes
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Even just a single egg a week may increase the risk of diabetes—the leading cause of lower-limb amputations, kidney failure, and new cases of blindness.

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Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

“Type 2 diabetes…is becoming a world pandemic.” We know the consumption of eggs is related to the development of some other chronic diseases. What about diabetes? Researchers found a stepwise increase in risk the more and more eggs people ate. Eating just a single egg a week appeared to increase the odds of diabetes by 76%. Two eggs a week appeared to double the odds, and just a single egg a day tripled the odds. Three times greater risk of type 2 diabetes, one of the leading causes of death and amputations, blindness, and kidney failure.

This is not the first time a link between eggs and diabetes has been reported. In 2009, Harvard researchers found that a single egg a day or more was associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes in men and women, and that finding has since also been confirmed in other populations—Asia in 2011, and Europe in 2012. And the “high” consumption of eggs associated with diabetes risk was less than one a day—though it appears you have to start early. Once you get into your 70s, avoiding eggs may not help.

Once we then have diabetes, eggs may hasten our death. Eating one egg a day or more appears to shorten anyone’s lifespan, but may double the all-cause mortality for those with diabetes. Not good news for the egg industry. From a transcript of a closed meeting I found through the Freedom of Information Act: “Given the rate at which obesity and incidence of type II diabetes is growing in the US, any association between dietary cholesterol and type II diabetes could be a ‘show stopper’ that could overshadow the positive attributes [of] eggs.”

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Thanks to Ellen Reid for her image-finding expertise, and Jeff Thomas for his Keynote help.

Below is an approximation of this video’s audio content. To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video.

“Type 2 diabetes…is becoming a world pandemic.” We know the consumption of eggs is related to the development of some other chronic diseases. What about diabetes? Researchers found a stepwise increase in risk the more and more eggs people ate. Eating just a single egg a week appeared to increase the odds of diabetes by 76%. Two eggs a week appeared to double the odds, and just a single egg a day tripled the odds. Three times greater risk of type 2 diabetes, one of the leading causes of death and amputations, blindness, and kidney failure.

This is not the first time a link between eggs and diabetes has been reported. In 2009, Harvard researchers found that a single egg a day or more was associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes in men and women, and that finding has since also been confirmed in other populations—Asia in 2011, and Europe in 2012. And the “high” consumption of eggs associated with diabetes risk was less than one a day—though it appears you have to start early. Once you get into your 70s, avoiding eggs may not help.

Once we then have diabetes, eggs may hasten our death. Eating one egg a day or more appears to shorten anyone’s lifespan, but may double the all-cause mortality for those with diabetes. Not good news for the egg industry. From a transcript of a closed meeting I found through the Freedom of Information Act: “Given the rate at which obesity and incidence of type II diabetes is growing in the US, any association between dietary cholesterol and type II diabetes could be a ‘show stopper’ that could overshadow the positive attributes [of] eggs.”

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Thanks to Ellen Reid for her image-finding expertise, and Jeff Thomas for his Keynote help.

Doctor's Note

More Freedom of Information Act insights into the egg industry can be found in:

Flax seeds may help control blood sugars (see Flax Seeds for Diabetes). Indian gooseberries may do the same (see Amla vs. Diabetes). But, our best bet may be a diet composed entirely of plants (see How to Prevent Diabetes and How to Treat Diabetes).

I cover gestational diabetes (high sugars during pregnancy) in Bacon, Eggs, & Gestational Diabetes during Pregnancy.

If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here.

238 responses to “Eggs & Diabetes

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    1. I’ve had a meat eating friend ask this before and I was a really surprised because I’ve never had trouble finding pasta or bread without eggs. The idea that eggs were common in them puzzled me because it didn’t match my experience at all.

      Cakes, of course, are another matter. You do have to go out of your way to find a cake without eggs. I definitely don’t eat as many cakes as I did back when I ate eggs. That’s probably a good thing, though.

      1. I was also surprised when a friend mentioned that a lot of pasta had eggs in it and she specifically bought some without eggs when she made dinner for me… I was pretty excited when I saw Barilla has a “Protein Plus” pasta, since you know – where do vegans get their protein ;-), but I didn’t realize until after I bought it that it contains eggs…

    2. Most nutrition labels list things like this …. I don’t see any eggs on the whole grain pasta I eat …. but I also don’t eat bread or cakes, and those products may not be well-labelled when they are prepared fresh by grocery store chains.

    3. Never had a problem with bread and pasta. Cakes are not really my thing.

      I did stumble across a loaf of bread on one occasion that had egg listed in the ingredients. It was so shocking that it stuck in my memory. It was a gluten free loaf, which may have had something to do with it.

    4. Pasta does not have egg, you have to ask because some home made pastas and gnocchi have egg in them…eggs can be substituted really easily in cakes and cookies…some “vegetarians” eat eggs….

      1. KC,
        Thank you for your question. This video highlighted the correlation between eating eggs and getting diabetes. Correlation does not mean causation, but it should make one want to investigate further to determine how eating eggs affects ones health. Please check out the following link for more information on eggs and health.https://nutritionfacts.org/topics/eggs/

        Type 2 Diabetes is a lifestyle disease, which means ones lifestyle choices affects ones chance of getting the disease. See the following link for more information to help you avoid Diabetes.https://nutritionfacts.org/topics/diabetes/

      2. If you watch Dr. Gregor’s videos, you’ll soon find that he’s not a fan of eggs. He’s a proponent of a totally vegetarian lifestyle and, even though the contents of eggs are nature’s specially-designed nourishment for the developing chickens inside fertilized ones, they are incompatible with Dr. Gregor’s definition of a vegetarian diet.

        He references legitimate, peer-reviewed studies to support his arguments, and the majority are helpful and compelling. But as you get familiar with his writings and videos, you’ll see a clear “anti-egg” bias.

        As the Diabetes Council states:
        “A recent article at the (mostly) political blog site fivethirthyeight.com examined why nutritional research is problematic. They found odd correlations—including eating egg rolls is correlated with dog ownership and that having an “innie” bellybutton was correlated with eating cabbage. Obviously, those correlations are meaningless, but they point to some of the difficulties of doing research in the nutritional field—there are just too many variables to know exactly what any individual should eat for optimal health.”

        So, yes, correlation is not necessarily causation. :)

  1. I know, eggs are for the purpose of bringing a new chicken or rooster into the world. Why do humans think eggs are here for us to eat? Crazy!

      1. Yet plants are not sentient beings, with the capacity to suffer, experience pain, and try to avoid pain. They do not possess a central or peripheral nervous system. There is a reason that doctors use the term “vegetative state” to describe someone with no consciousness, sapience or sentience. Thus I do not think the analogy to plant seeds begetting plants makes any sense at all. The suffering of crated chickens in the egg laying industry is enough to revolt most people who have awareness of the conditions under which those eggs are produced for human consumption. Ethically it seems open-and-shut, if one first looks into it at length.

        1. The case for plant-based eating for health reasons is strong. If people don’t care enough to guard their own health, they are not likely to buy into your ethics regarding “sentient beings”. In fact for a long time I was suspicious of this whole story because Dr G, Essy and so many others are deeply into animal ethics. This site is about, errm …digesting the science so we don’t have to. You may lose more converts than gain with your argument. Dig me?

          1. Holistic nutrition is about combining health *and* ethics. I’d recommend the book “Eating Animals” to anyone with interest in either. I cannot carve off my approach to health from my personal responsibility to not cause great harm and suffering through something so basic as eating. And if you respond – as so many others have – that this means I should give up driving my car or living without central heating, then my response is that I am not attempting to seek perfection, because that is a false, unachievable ideal. A little harm reduction, perhaps, but not perfection. Eating plants instead of animals is a relatively painless way to cause less pain in this world, though certainly not the only way. Giving up my vehicle would be another way, and many have. But to separate health and ethics — I just don’t buy it. Also, I had no idea Dr Esselstyn was deeply into animal ethics. Frankly I’m surprised, since he’s an endocrine surgeon, and so many achievements in his field have been hard won on the backs of experimental animal subjects.

            1. Setting aside whether plants are sentient (I believe they are) why do we not look at the millions of small mammals and other animals that are killed in highly unnatural ways each day by plowing, planting and other activities related to the growing of crops. I believe that eating animals does not increase animal suffering – and may in fact decrease it – compared to eating plants. There may be other health and ecological reasons for preferring plants to animals but reducing suffering is not one of them.

              1. Do you have any empirical evidence that plowing/planting/harvesting results in the death of millions of small mammals and other animals? I have heard that frequently from carnivores, but I have never heard a statistic to back it up. How many animals would have to die to serve me plant food for a year versus animal food? And multiply that by how many people there are in the world, and all our pets, obviously.
                Even granting your statistic, life feeds on life, and without death and killing, there would be no life (we can’t just eat minerals). However, there is a real moral difference between the inadvertent and relatively quick demise of animals in the course of planting and plowing or harvesting a field versus subjecting deliberately genetically distorted factory farm animals to weeks or months of horrendous suffering. It is not necessarily the death of animals that I object to, as regrettable as that is; rather, it’s the current factory farm system which delivers ridiculously low cost animal protein to consumers, virtually paid for on the backs of the suffering that caged, confined, victimized, often deliberately maimed, and genetically overgrown animals must endure. That is why a book like “Reading Animals”, written by an initial skeptical vegetarian, is so eye-opening. I had no idea what conditions existed on a modern factory farm, having never been to one, or at a slaughterhouse.
                And how are plants sentient? Isn’t consciousness of pain and suffering considered evidence of suffering? The fact that plants can flower in the daylight and move towards the light – due to chemical reactions in the absence of a functioning nervous system – does that constitute sentience in your view? Or am I being overly “speciesist”? Really I am open to debate on these important points, and do not wish to prejudge.

              2. It seems you are neglecting to factor in the vast amount of corn/soy/alfalfa crops that are grown to feed “livestock”. So, in all of these fields, small animals are apparently killed. Many wild animals are displaced/killed in the US and in many other countries when wild lands are clear-cut for growing livestock feed and for foraging livestock. The amount of land that is needed to feed a vegan is lots less than to grow the crops to feed a meat eater and dairy consumer. I don’t have the statistics at hand but I’m guessing another site visitor does.

              3. The energy, water and waste produced in producing beef far exceeds that of whole plant-based production. If you would visit a corporate “farm” where chickens are grown or check out whether fish feel pain you would not be indicating that produce farming results in more harm to live creatures.

              4. You do know that more crops are grown to feed livestock than humans, right? it takes growing one pound of corn to get a pound of corn onto your dinner plate. How many pounds of corn did it take to get that pound of steak onto your plate? So if you really do care about the field mice and moles etc, go vegan, otherwise this argument rings hollow.

              5. This argument, that eating meat causes less harm because of less agriculture is nonsensical. Animal agriculture requires much more plant agriculture to feed the animals to be slaughtered for food than simply feeding people with plants. If cultivating plants is a concern for you, you simply have to hate animal agriculture. In my experience, few actually believe this argument that the meat industry spares harm, it is simply trotted out by trolls.

          2. Oh, totally. I get it. I’m on my way there. What I perceive as benefits to a WFPB diet are pretty much in line with what others are stating on the subject. Pamelabanana Jean’s misperception of what I wrote notwithstanding…..

        2. Hmmm, you ASSUME that plants are not sentient beings. You ASSUME they have no capacity to suffer, experience pain, etc. Perhaps our understanding is stunted.

            1. Biologically the main difference is the lack of a central nervous system. What one considers “sentient” depends on your definition. I believe the term has Buddhist roots. It can relate to “awareness” or “feelings”. Clearly plants have environmental responses. Since we need to eat something I would argue to minimize the “harm” we cause in the world. Of course our species doesn’t have a good track record in that regard unless you look at certain groups. Given today’s science… always subject to change… it appears that eating a whole food plant based diet is the healthiest and causes the least amount of harm. It is also consistent with our design as hind gut fermenting herbivores. You might be interested in the post re: Paleo diet from a conference in Frankfurt Germany on the “paleo” diet.. see http://hells-ditch.com/2012/08/archaeologists-officially-declare-collective-sigh-over-paleo-diet/.

              1. I have started on a plant base, whole food nutrition and I have been amazed with all the changes that are happening to me. On my sixth month now and blood pressure down, energy, sleeping good, I pay attention to labels now, weight loss, no more headaches and the product that I take is Juice Plus.

            2. We eat animals. Animals eat animals. I understand where animal lovers are coming from, but the fact is, we animals eat other animals. I suppose in a sense, it makes us cannibals, but I am pointing not to sentient beings so much as the health benefits of limiting animal flesh in our diets while maximizing plants, grains, fruits, etc.
              As for slaughterhouses & other crowded animal farms where the animals are kept in such abysmal conditions, dosed with hormones & vaccinations because of those terrible conditions -just remember, you are what you eat. That includes what goes into your body when you consume any animal flesh or plants which were doused with pesticides, herbicides, and other things which will ultimately kill us all -if given the chance.

          1. Your understanding is certainly stunted. Try using some common sense and gather what we know rather than assume about chickens, cows and fish vs a wheat plant…

          2. You watch an hour of a slaughterhouse video, and I’ll watch 30 minutes of a strawberry harvest. Maybe your understanding is stunted.

            1. You assume my comment is at odds with what I perceive your feelings to be on this subject. Your comprehension of what I said is stunted.

            2. Bring an apple to the dinner table, slice it and eat it with wife and children, then bring a chicken or rabbit and do the same.

        3. Eggs aren’t sentient beings….and the suffering of a hen in a cage says a lot about the owner of that hen, not about the production of eggs. I don’t however, eat eggs.

        4. How do you know there is no sentience within plant life? Just because a human finds difficulty in communication with flora, yours is a sweeping statement .

        5. there is quite a bit of science which shows plants DO feel pain, & recently that trees actually talk to each other, so I would not be confident in your assumption that plants are not sentient.

        6. Well the eggs which I eat are from happy free range chickens which all come home at late afternoon to settle down for the night, but the ones I can buy in our local shops are also free range.

      2. No; the purpose of a plant is to bring more seeds into the world–If you eat only seeds, fruits, grains, nuts, milk and eggs you do not kill anything. Vegetable eaters are killers as much as animal eaters.

        1. this has to be the ‘jackpot statement’ of all dietary forum entries. I would wager that future arguments would be better centred around appropriate usage of these resources in a sustainable fashion. Rice doesn’t feel pain, but if it does then I suggest it appropriate that this abundant life giving food like so many others in this genre,resolves this as part of the ‘life moving forward’ process. I may be required to have a ‘sit down chat’ with rice should I make it to the afterlife.

          Meat-murder
          Vegetarianism-murder
          Vegan-murder
          what’s left-live long and prosper is the argument.

          keep an eye on production, as with the pious prius, all that mining and heavy industry does not make green transport. car share is better, spreading resources is better. Regarding food production no-one ever said it was going to be easy but I have my suspicions of a system that makes it difficult at best to even attempt to do even the small things for benefit. You know, like no aspartame for kids or lower sugar in cereals. I’m citing mass production yet at the same time mass consumption too. Most people eat the most eaten things.

      1. true, but it is still the female donation needed to make a baby chick. I do not think that humans were ever intended to eat an egg. If you think outside of the mind conditioning that says it is Ok you might just realize how strange it is.

      2. MmBb: This line of discussion is off topic for NutritionFacts. So, so far, I have bit my tongue to stay out of it. But I just couldn’t resist a reply to your comment.

        re: “…therefore no chick is involved.”

        This is true only in a limited sense. Here’s how I explain the ethical side of eating eggs to people who think it is possible to eat certain eggs ethically:

        What is the very best you could do ethically and still eat eggs? The hens would belong to a healthy variety. The hens would have all of their physical (including not just exercise, but medical), emotional and mental needs met. The hens would be allowed to live their entire lives even when their egg laying days are over. That’s a pretty sweet-sounding setup and so extremely rare as to be *almost* non-existent.

        So, where’s the problem in the best case above scenario? For each of those “girls” who lay the eggs, a beautiful boy baby was also born. The babies were sexed and the vast majority of the boys were destroyed – often enough in a horrific manner.

        I’ve seen a video of a common enough sexing process where the boys are thrown live into a giant trash can. I don’t know if the ones hitting the bottom break any bones or not. But they are certainly screaming and suffering. Then more and more babies are thrown on top. I presume the ones on the bottom are slowly suffocated by the bodies of their peers on top. When the screaming, flapping, terrified babies reach the top of the trashcan, the human gently closes the top so that the chicks who are still alive slowly suffocate.

        Imagine doing this to human babies or puppies. It would not be acceptable to most humans. We had boy roosters in our neighborhood for a while. Someone released them into the “wild”. I LOVED them. They were colorful, fun, and a joy to watch. But roosters are illegal in the city limits and a neighbor caught and then got rid of them.

        So, consider again: “…therefore no chick is involved.” There is a range of “ethical badness”? / moral problems when it comes to eating eggs. The range is huge–from super evil to … I don’t know how to call it: ?just bad? But you really can’t eat eggs in any practical sense completely free of moral problems. There is always those boy baby chicks (born at the same time the girls are born) to consider, a majority of whom are killed one way or another.

        Something to think about.

    1. A rooster is a chicken, so is a hen, and they both come from eggs. A chicken is simply the egg’s way of reproducing itself. Eggs are food for many animals besides humans.
      Which came first? The rooster came first.

      1. I agree. They may be the rare genetically gifted individuals with phenomenal lifelong insulin sensitivity. Or perhaps other factors come into play like physical activity or other protective factors (good psychosocial health and functioning).

    1. The food that our parents and grandparents ate when they were growing up is not the same that we are eating today. Everything from feed, pesticides, “nutritional” additives, hormones, antiobiotics, environmental issues, farming practices, etc. is generally less natural.

      1. @PJ I agree, foods were different. Their over-all diet was good. They grew their own food, and pretty much everything was made from scratch. They were active and generally happy people, but not free of stress. My father was one of 10 kids. Ergo…perhaps it’s not the eggs at all that is actually contributing to diabetes. I’m just saying that I’m thinking that there are other factors involved in that process besides just consuming an egg per day.

      2. so , instead of everyone trying to make people sound like murderers for eating rice, how about we focus our efforts on obtaining lean food. using local sources with ethical practices. start a garden, keep a few hens around for eggs. Creation provided what we need, but creaton also made it to where we have to work to obtain those things, by tilling, harvesting, hunting and processing. instead of righteous indignation towards each other how about teaming up to make these small things become truth again. Community gardens anyone? with rabbits and chickens raised ethically?

        1. Yes, Rebecca, you are right, I go for meat and chickens which have no hormones in them and my own eggs which helped to rid me of Diabetes 2  are roaming around by land and return home late afternoon, they are as free as a bird :).   My grandparents never died from cancer or diabetes and they lived on eggs all their lives well into 95 plus. Last week it was funny, I told my mother in law not to be eating canned corn beef because it was swimming in fat, she replied “at my age I don’t worry about things like that”  But everyone is different and individual so while eggs are good for me other people may cook them wrong and in fat and so it’s detrimental to their health.

    2. I eat a hard boiled egg every single morning and have perfect sugar. This has been my routine for the past 2 years. At my last physical my sugar was 77. Cholesterol was 160, triglycerides were 41. I think the egg has nothing to do with it. The rest of the diet needs to be taken into consideration. Like high fructose corn syrup. It’s in everything. THAT will cause diabetes.

        1. Sugar does indeed indirectly aid in the development of diabetes. That although, is not what I said. I said “high fructose corn syrup”.

  2. Even if i think too many eggs is not a good idea, i can’t believe that a single egg a week could cause such damage… i need to study better and deeper this issue…

    1. If you look under the video window you will see “Sources Cited.” Click on this and a list of citations will appear. These citations will take you to scholarly articles that will give you more information.

  3. I think SFAs could be one culprit. There is an excellent editorial in JAMA Archives of Internal Medicine ( http://archinte.jamanetwork.com/article.aspx?articleid=1697792&resultClick=3 ) that talks about the mechanisms by which meat intake increases the risk of type 2 diabetes (sorry it’s behind a paywall but here is one excerpt):

    “Perhaps a better description of the characteristics of the meat consumed with the greatest effect on risk is the saturated fatty acid (SFA) content rather than the amount of oxygen-carrying proteins. … increased consumption of SFAs has a powerful short- and long-term effect on insulin action.”

    Eggs are rich in SFA, cholesterol and choline, contain virtually no carbohydrate yet increase the risk of type 2 diabetes.

      1. That’s interesting, because choline deficiency is supposed to promote fatty liver disease (in both humans and animals), and fatty liver disease, if we go back up the pathway, is a common consequence of type 2 diabetes.

        Phosphatidylcholine seems to be found in a lot of weight-builders supplements. I am curious if they are doing harm to themselves by taking this. Is diacyl-phosphatidylcholine the same as regular lecithin-based phosphatidylcholine?

        1. The four diacyl-phosphatidylcholine species positively associated with diabetes risk in the EPIC-Potsdam study are produced from dietary choline (most of which in the form of phosphatidylcholine), and saturated and monounsaturated fats. Excess dietary choline perhaps increases their synthesis.

          If I understand the nomenclature used, from their fatty acid distributions egg lecithin should natively have more of the suspect diacyl-PCs than soy lecithin, though the native form may not matter:
          C32:1 C36:1 C38:3
          egg 0.6 % 14.0 % 3.0 %
          soy – 1.3 % –

          1. Thank you. I am avoiding high doses of choline. My intake is about 200 mg/day. I do get 40 mg from a B100 complex, which I’ve started on because I developed angular stomatitis (cracking at the corners of my lips). Clearly, my diet is not completely balanced as, in addition to the B100 complex, I also take DHA, vitamin D3, and kelp.

            1. Mentioned elsewhere, but I recommend checking out a typical daily diet on CRON-O-Meter. I discovered that I was mostly doing fine (with similar supplementation, nutritional yeast is my B supplement), but was consistently low on magnesium on days I don’t gorge on nuts.

              1. I have done rigorous checking of my dietary composition on peacounter, but many of the foods I eat are missing from the database. Because I eat a fair amount of nuts each day (both as a snack and in smoothies), I never lack for Mg2+. Regarding magnesium supplements – a randomized trial in BMJ in or around 1993-1996 showed increased risk of cardiac death from magnesium oxide (or citrate?) supplementation in patients with coronary artery disease. Not sure if you are supplementing with magnesium or not, but thought I’d mention it. Always better to get nutrients from whole foods, and I thought I was doing well, until angular stomatitis arrived.

  4. Like some of the other viewers, I found that this particular piece doesn’t quite explain what it is about eggs that cause diabetes and if it’s more the yolk or the whites or both, is it worse if the egg is eaten alone or does it help if the egg is baked in another product, etc. Also, I would think that people who eat eggs regularly might also eat higher fat and/or glycemic foods such as bacon, pastries, toast, etc. and I would like to know if those variables were considered.

    1. I agree Louise. The reason I even read all these comments was to see if the ‘why’ was answered. Perhaps he will answer that in a future video. I do have to laugh at some of the defender-of-meat comments regarding suffering and sentience! I say let them eat their animals and get sick. You can lead a horse to water……..

      1. The association of eggs with type two diabetes relates to their high fat content. It is the fat in the diet that appears to be the cause due to fat leading to insulin resistance as well as down regulating the genes that run mitochondria that burn glucose. Of course we can’t rule out effects of adipocytes in overweight and obese individuals. Egg whites have very little fat and are in fact mostly protein… you can check out the details on Cronometer. So I would imagine it doesn’t contribute to type two diabetes. You do have to ask yourself why you would want to eat a high animal protein food given the evidence that too much protein intake especially animal protein is harmful to your kidney function and associated with certain cancers. Egg whites also have a very high amount of selenium. The devil is always in the details.

        1. You have mentioned in earlier post of issues with egg-whites. Organic pasture raised eggs egg whites? What is the pressing health issue with these for someone who is vegetarian and has immense problems deriving protein (absorption issues) from plant-based proteins? An egg a day, (minus the yolk), is it really an issue? Thank you so much doctor for any thoughts on this.

          1. Belinda H: I know you addressed your comment to Dr. Forrester. I’m sure he will reply to you as he is able. In the meantime, I thought I would share with you my standard reply concerning egg whites, which is below.
            .
            But first, note that the reply below does not take into account your specific issue. I’ve never heard of someone who has trouble absorbing plant protein, but can absorb animal protein. The answer below talks about the harms of egg whites. But maybe in your case, the benefits would outweigh the harms. I wouldn’t know.

            ************************
            There are two problems with eggs, the yolk and the white. (To paraphrase Dr. Barnard.) Egg whites are likely a big problem health-wise, just like the yolks. It is true that egg whites do not have cholesterol. But egg whites are essentially all animal protein. Here’s what we know about animal protein in general and egg whites in particular:

            Dr. Barnard links potential kidney problems to animal protein (though I don’t have the details on that). And Dr. Greger talks about the problems of animal protein in general in his annual summary video, “Food as Medicine: Preventing and Treating the Most Dreaded Diseases with Diet” http://nutritionfacts.org/video/food-as-medicine

            Here on NutritionFacts, you can get a great education on how animal protein is linked to the body’s over-production of a growth hormone called IGF-1. IGF-1 helps cancer to grow. To watch the series about IGF-1, click on the link below and then keep clicking the “next video” link on the button to the right until you get through the bodybuilding video. Then you will have seen the entire series.
            http://nutritionfacts.org/video/igf-1-as-one-stop-cancer-shop/

            Here’s another great tidbit from NutritionFacts on another mechanism linking egg whites to cancer as well as increased virus infections: “why would animal protein and fat increase cancer risk? Well, as I noted in Bowel Wars, if you eat egg whites, for example, between 5 and 35% of the protein isn’t digested, isn’t absorbed, and ends up in the colon, where it undergoes a process called putrefaction. When animal protein putrefies in the gut, it can lead to the production of the rotten egg gas, hydrogen sulfide, which, over and above its objectionable odor, can produce changes that increase cancer risk. Putrefying protein also produces ammonia.”
            To learn more details about the process, check out:
            http://nutritionfacts.org/video/putrefying-protein-and-toxifying-enzymes/

            Darryl at one point reminded me of the methionine issue, which I think I first learned from Rami and later from Dr. Greger. Egg whites have *the* highest concentration of methionine of any food:
            http://nutritiondata.self.com/foods-000084000000000000000.html?categories=1,18,9,0,13,14,5,4,42,16,17,15,6,3,2,11,7,19,21,12,10,8,22
            Dr. Greger did a nice video showing the link between methionine and cancer.
            http://nutritionfacts.org/video/starving-cancer-with-methionine-restriction/

            Darryl also pointed out that, “…high methionine diets increase coronary risk in humans. In its associations with cardiovascular disease and other disorders, homocysteine may be functioning partly as a marker for the major culprit, excess methionine.”
            http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0939475305001092

            Dr. Greger recently posted some videos on how animal protein can raise insulin levels. The first of the following videos even specifically addresses egg whites.
            http://nutritionfacts.org/video/paleo-diets-may-negate-benefits-of-exercise/#comment-1978464793
            http://nutritionfacts.org/video/if-white-rice-is-linked-to-diabetes-what-about-china/

            In summary: there are at least three pathways potentially linking animal proteins, especially egg whites, to cancer: the IGF-1, methionine, and putrefaction. And there is some good evidence that egg white consumption contributes to heart disease and potential problems with T2 diabetes by raising insulin levels in a bad way. All of these reductionist-type studies lend support the bigger general population studies showing that the healthiest populations on earth are those which eat the least amount of animal protein.

            With all of the information we have about the harmful effects of animal protein in general and egg white in particular, I think it’s best to stay away from egg white. Why not get your protein from safe sources? IE: Sources which are known to have lots of positive health effects and will naturally give you a balanced amount of protein? (ie: whole plant foods) Make sense?

  5. Dear Dr. Greger. We all love your research. and You have brought so much joy in my life highlighting the crap we Americans eat. But I notice often you omit opposing research.

    Please do refer to studies that contradict your conclusory remarks. In many of your remarks you often fail to talk about contradictory research. While I have absolutely no regard for excess egg or protein, it appears that your vegan philosophy often omits research that may contradict your opinion. Here are three latest egg research showing the opposite of your assertion.

    Nutr
    Hosp. 2013 Jan-Feb;28(1):105-11. doi: 10.3305/nh.2013.28.1.6124.

    Egg consumption and risk of type 2 diabetes in a
    Mediterranean cohort; the sun project.

    Zazpe
    I, Beunza
    JJ, Bes-Rastrollo
    M, Basterra-Gortari
    FJ, Mari-Sanchis
    A, Martínez-González
    MÁ; SUN
    Project Investigators.

    Collaborators
    (18)

    Source

    University of Navarra, Pamplona, Navarra, Spain.

    Abstract

    in English,
    Spanish

    INTRODUCTION AND AIM:

    The prevalence of diabetes is increasing at an alarming rate in
    nearly all countries. Some studies from non-Mediterranean populations
    suggest that higher egg consumption is associated with an increased
    risk of diabetes. The aim of our study was to prospectively assess
    the association between egg consumption and the incidence of type 2
    diabetes in a large cohort of Spanish university graduates.

    METHODS:

    In this prospective cohort including 15,956 participants (mean
    age: 38.5 years) during 6.6 years (median), free of diabetes mellitus
    at baseline. Egg consumption was assessed at baseline through a
    semiquantitative food-frequency questionnaire repeatedly validated in
    Spain. Incident diabetes mellitus diagnosed by a doctor was assessed
    through biennial follow-up questionnaires and confirmed subsequently
    by medical reports or records, according to the American Diabetes
    Association criteria. Analyses were performed through multivariable
    non-conditional logistic regression.

    RESULTS:

    After adjustment for confounders, egg consumption was not
    associated with the development of diabetes mellitus, comparing the
    highest versus the lowest quartile of egg consumption (1 egg/week): odds ratio = 0.7; 95% CI 0.3-1.7.

    CONCLUSION:

    Egg consumption was not
    associated with the development of diabetes mellitus in this
    Mediterranean cohort.

    Atherosclerosis.
    2013 Aug;229(2):381-4. doi: 10.1016/j.atherosclerosis.2013.05.008.
    Epub 2013 May 31.

    Egg consumption and coronary atherosclerotic
    burden.

    Chagas
    P, Caramori
    P, Galdino
    TP, Barcellos
    Cda S, Gomes
    I, Schwanke
    CH.

    Source

    Department of Health Sciences, School of Nutrition, Federal
    University of Santa Maria – UFSM, Av. Independência 3751, 98300.000
    Palmeira das Missões, RS, Brazil. patriciachagas.ufsm@hotmail.com

    Abstract

    OBJECTIVE:

    To verify the association between egg consumption and coronary
    atherosclerotic burden.

    DESIGN:

    Observational study.

    SETTING:

    Cardiac catheterization laboratory.

    PARTICIPANTS:

    Adult patients referred for coronary angiography.

    MEASUREMENTS:

    Socio-demographic data (age, education level, and occupation),
    cardiovascular risk factors (smoking, systemic hypertension,
    dyslipidemia, diabetes, and family history of coronary artery
    disease), and egg-eating habits were assessed using a research
    questionnaire. Egg consumption was divided into three categories:
    less than one egg a week; one egg a week; and more than one egg a
    week. Coronary atherosclerotic burden was assessed by a blinded
    interventional cardiologist using the Friesinger Score (FS) obtained
    from the coronary angiography. This score varies from 0 to 15 and
    evaluated each of the three main coronary arteries separately. For
    this analysis, the FS was divided into three categories: 0-4, 5-9,
    and 10-15.

    RESULTS:

    The study sample was composed of 382 adult patients; 241 patients
    (63.3%) were male. The average age was 60.3 ± 10.8 years (range
    23-89 years). The egg-eating category was inversely associated with
    dyslipidemia (p < 0.05) but not with the other cardiovascular risk
    factors. A significant association was found between egg consumption
    and FS (p < 0.05), showing that patients who ate more than one egg
    a week had a lower coronary atherosclerotic burden. By multivariate
    analysis, the atherosclerotic burden was independently associated
    with sex, age, hypertension and egg consumption.

    CONCLUSION:

    In this observational study of patients
    undergoing coronary angiography, the consumption of more than one egg
    per week was associated with a lower coronary atherosclerotic burden.

    Copyright © 2013 Elsevier Ireland Ltd. All rights reserved.

    KEYWORDS:

    Angiography, CAD, Coronary Artery Disease, Coronary
    atherosclerosis burden, Egg consumption, FS, Friesinger Score,
    Nutrition

    Am
    J Clin Nutr. 2013 Jul;98(1):146-59. doi: 10.3945/ajcn.112.051318.
    Epub 2013 May 15.

    Egg consumption in relation to risk of
    cardiovascular disease and diabetes: a systematic review and
    meta-analysis.

    Shin
    JY, Xun
    P, Nakamura
    Y, He
    K.

    Source

    Department of Nutrition, Gillings Schools of Global Public Health,
    University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, Chapel Hill, NC, USA.

    Abstract

    BACKGROUND:

    The associations of egg consumption with cardiovascular disease
    (CVD) and diabetes are still unclear.

    OBJECTIVE:

    We aimed to quantitatively summarize the literature on egg
    consumption and risk of CVD, cardiac mortality, and type 2 diabetes
    by conducting a meta-analysis of prospective cohort studies.

    DESIGN:

    A systematic literature review was conducted for published studies
    in PubMed and EMBASE through March 2012. Additional information was
    retrieved through Google or a hand review of the reference from
    relevant articles. Studies were included if they had a prospective
    study design, were published in English-language journals, and
    provided HRs and 95% CIs for the associations of interest. Data were
    independently extracted by 2 investigators, and the weighted HRs and
    95% CIs for the associations of interest were estimated by using a
    random-effects model.

    RESULTS:

    A total of 22 independent cohorts from 16 studies were identified,
    including participants ranging in number from 1600 to 90,735 and in
    follow-up time from 5.8 to 20.0 y. Comparison of the highest category
    (≥1 egg/d) of egg consumption with the lowest (<1 egg/wk or
    never) resulted in a pooled HR (95% CI) of 0.96 (0.88, 1.05) for
    overall CVD, 0.97 (0.86, 1.09) for ischemic heart disease, 0.93
    (0.81, 1.07) for stroke, 0.98 (0.77, 1.24) for ischemic heart disease
    mortality, 0.92 (0.56, 1.50) for stroke mortality, and 1.42 (1.09,
    1.86) for type 2 diabetes. Of the studies conducted in diabetic
    patients, the pooled HR (95% CI) was 1.69 (1.09, 2.62) for overall
    CVD.

    CONCLUSIONS:

    This meta-analysis suggests
    that egg consumption is not associated with the risk of CVD and
    cardiac mortality in the general population. However, egg consumption
    may be associated with an increased incidence of type 2 diabetes
    among the general population and CVD comorbidity among diabetic
    patients.

    1. Thanks for a glimpse of reason. To blame egg consumption, on just about anything, is completely ridiculous. Especially if they are eggs from wild, free-range, organically fed chickens.

      Eggs from that source are one of the most nutritious foods aout there.
      ~~~

    2. Thank you. I posted a number of studies below that suggest the total opposite of what this video suggests. No one even responded. This site is so conveniently blind to the discourse at the heart of scientific research. I love this site and agree with many of its premises but it is so dishonest and unreflective in regard to its driving bias — which is disheartening.

      1. Sam and Kim: I have some thoughts for you. I want to make clear first, though, that I am not speaking on behalf of Dr. Greger or NutritionFact.org. I am offering personal opinions.

        I don’t think this site is blind to anything. Every site/organization is going to have a scope and a set amount of resources. The scope on this site is Dr. Greger’s take on *relevant* science regarding nutrition. He reads all those studies “so we don’t have to.” To me, that means that Dr. Greger should not be sharing all of the studies that he doesn’t consider relevant. I come to this site, because I don’t have time for that.

        I imagine that Dr. Greger doesn’t have the time/resources to post and respond to every study either. You can always find conflicting studies about anything. As I have posted in the past, you can even find studies that show that smoking has nothing to do with cancer. Those studies may even look quite convincing. But if I went to a site that boasted, “I review all the science on smoking so that you don’t have to.”, I would expect to see the studies filtered to what the presenter considers relevant to the big picture of what we know about smoking.

        There can be all sorts of reasons that Dr. Greger would consider a study not to be relevant. I personally don’t need to know those reasons at this point in my life. I just know that I don’t have the time or training to go through it all myself. I am content that Dr. Greger looks at conflicting information like the studies you site and weighs them accordingly. I can think of three videos off the top of my head where Dr. Greger shares studies that would be considered at least on the surface to be against the plant food message or that contradict traditional vegan beliefs. Also, there are plenty of videos where Dr. Greger makes it clear that we don’t “know” something. That he is just sharing what we know so far. So, I feel comfortable that Dr. Greger is thinking critically when he makes his decisions about what to include. And based on what he has presented, I feel comfortable that he is not only thinking critically, but is also making good decisions.

        As you and others have done, you can feel free to post any opposing studies you want in the comments section. Sometimes people reply. Sometimes not. I would imagine that most people feel the same way that I do – that opposing research is relevant only in the context of deeply understanding all of the studies on that topic and being able to weigh them in the big picture. We have some commenters who can do that. But most of us can’t and/or don’t have time.

        If you feel like you need to see a debate on these topics, you might consider keeping NutritionFacts in your back pocket, but also going to other sites which give equal time and weight to all studies/sides–regardless of validity. (For me, such a site is likely to end up being about false equivalencies and create more confusion and miss information than actual scientific discourse. But maybe there really is a site where you can take all valid studies and debate them.) For this site, we get the bottom line, which is something many people seem to appreciate.

        I welcome people posting opposing opinions. I just don’t consider it Dr. Greger’s job to do so. He has already done his job by screening out what he considers riff-raff. I don’t get all of my nutritional information from one person/this site. This is just one valuable source of info with a known and realistic scope.

        So, I’ve said the same thing multiple ways. Hopefully I was able to get my point across in a respectful way. I actually sympathize with your position. I just disagree with it in terms of this particular site.

    3. The conclusion of the meta-analysis you cite, “However, egg consumption may be associated with an increased incidence of type 2 diabetes among the general population and CVD comorbidity among diabetic patients.” confirms Dr. Greger’s conclusion, although I do worry that there is a lack of balance in the studies reported at times. I think it behooves the average person to do a bit of their own, outside research and not just rely on one source of information.

  6. I think the egg is not a risk for diabetes, provided the perfect egg portion to touch each individual is consumed, as the case of each. Could intervene as certain factors such as age, height, complexion, inherited antescedentes family, etc.. which take into account that within the total basal energy expenditure of each individual egg that was consumed between corresponding portions within, and not exceed, for which there is no health risk when consumed, yet on the other hand I agree that in fact only one egg a week if it exceeds the limit portions of the group in which the egg enters the food pyramid, if there is a risk.

  7. I find the data for the conclusion to be pretty flimsy. To quote from the most recent data (from a long term well designed study and then peer reviewed in a main stream journal http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20534749) – “n this cohort of older adults with limited egg intake, there was no association between egg consumption or dietary cholesterol and increased risk of incident T2D.”

    I think it is just as likely that it is the protein intake which is the culprit. Those who eat eggs generally eat more protein in general. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22850191 “High protein intake was associated with increased risk of type 2 diabetes (hazard ratio (HR) 1.27 for highest compared with lowest quintile;” or some other associated variable.

  8. In my case of Type II Diabetes I really don’t think eating EGGS had all that much to do with me acquiring the illness. Well, not as much as did MONSANTO and getting sprayed with AGENT ORANGE for a full year. (By the way, Agent Orange doesn’t have anything on Round Up, when it comes to killing vegetation). But now that I have Type II Diabetes, I can see no reason for continuing to eat eggs. I for one am heading toward a Vegetarian Diet and Growing as much as I can in MY OWN GARDEN!

  9. I had to read the research for this topic. Djousse’ 2008 study showed several conflicting pieces of information. 1. Both men and women eating >7 eggs per week had lower incidence of high cholesterol than those not eating eggs. 2. Both men and women eating >7 eggs per week also had up to 4 x the incidence of smoking and alcohol use than non-egg consumers. 3. BMI and HTN were also higher in egg eaters. Do we assume that eating eggs cause obesity and HTN also? IF we use this logic then eggs will help lower cholesterol also or make us want to smoke and drink. Are there studies on eggs with control groups (everything equal except consumption of eggs) for risk of heart disease, diabetes, cholesterol.

    1. For those eating Western diets, little dietary cholesterol is absorbed and serum cholesterol levels are largely related to saturated and trans-fat intake. A 100 mg increase in dietary cholesterol translates into an increase of only about 2.2 (mg/dl) in serum cholesterol. However, cholesterol uptake is considerably higher in those with lower serum levels, like low-fat vegans:

      modest amounts of cholesterol added to a cholesterol-free diet would be expected to most efficiently elevate serum cholesterol

      Its plausible that among those eating a Western diet, those choosing to eat eggs rather than sausage would have lower serum cholesterol, as the saturated fat (lower in the eggs) would be the predominant determinant.

      The heart attack proof zone for serum cholesterol is under 150 mg/dL total cholesterol, achieved through dietary means. This typically means a vegan (or nearly vegan) diet with high fiber, high plant phytosterols and no added fats. Addition of egg cholesterol to that kind of diet would have a pronounced adverse effect.

      1. SO this means that if you so happened to want to include eggs in your diet and have them be less damaging to you, you’d be better off increases the total fat content of your diet before introducing eggs into the diet, otherwise as a low-fat vegan one is more susceptible and adversely affected by the egg? Interestingly, i never had a problem with eggs until I went low fat vegan. Does something change in the macrobiome as a result of low-fat vegan, which then makes someone have to avoid eggs? I assume this is the logic, Darryl? This is so darn interesting, what you have written.

        1. Jeanna: Since Darryl didn’t answer (as near as I can tell), I thought I would offer a reply. You wrote, “”SO this means that if you so happened to want to include eggs in your diet and have them be less damaging to you, you’d be better off increases the total fat content of your diet before introducing eggs into the diet, otherwise as a low-fat vegan one is more susceptible and adversely affected by the egg.”
          .
          I don’t think that is a correct interpretation of what Darryl/the science is saying. We do tend to have an upper limit of how much cholesterol our bodies make. So, if you are *already* high/in the danger zone, then adding more dietary cholesterol doesn’t additionally hurt you as much as you would expect. But you are still hurt by eating the foods that put you in the danger zone to begin with. Most of those foods are meat, dairy and eggs. It doesn’t make sense to say, “Hey, eggs won’t hurt me so much if I eat a lot of meat and dairy first.” That’s no different than saying, “I’m going to eat three eggs a day so that the fourth one won’t hurt me.”
          .
          As an analogy, consider risk of cancer from smoking. I believe it is generally true that at some level of smoking, the risk of getting cancer evens out. I’ll make up some numbers to make a point. Say it does not matter if you smoke a pack a day or a pack and a half. In this example, you still have about the same risk of getting cancer. Suppose what you really want to do is smoke a pipe? It doesn’t make sense to say that you will smoke a pack of cigarettes a day so that the danger from smoking the pipe isn’t so bad. You are probably better off smoking the pipe and taking the hit/risk from the pipe alone than from doing both.
          .
          The vegans (generally) are like the people who don’t smoke at all. The person who adds the first half pack of cigarettes a day has more *increase in* risk than say someone who goes from two to 2.5 packs per day. That doesn’t mean that it makes sense to smoke the first 2 packs so that the last 1/2 pack isn’t as risky. Similarly, the first bit of animal products (whether meat, dairy or eggs) is going to increase risk of heart disease a lot compared to someone who is already in the danger zone and who adds that same amount of animal products to their diet.
          .
          What do you think?

      2. Mostly of interests in how a vegan diet might change the gut, I used to eat eggs, dairy, fish, chicken, butter, every single day and never felt any issues with a slowed heart, sluggishness of speed/endurance, or trouble breathing.

        When I went 100 percent low fat vegan, and for a long time, and then started eating eggs and chicken again, I had trouble breathing and became at a total loss of physical energy. It literally hurt my heart when I ate eggs. Someone suggested that this might be because my diet also included generous amounts of fructose from apples, dates, and bananas, where as when I was originally an omnivore I had little of these fruit sugars in my diet.

        I want to stay vegan, but I also am thrilled by the science, and maybe you can theorize or make sense of all this.

  10. there’s factory farmed eggs,
    and then there are real eggs. Eggs that are scrambled or fried have the
    cholesterol and fatty acids oxidized. Poached and soft boiled, not so.
    Eggs are an anabolic food. Diet needs to be matched to the individual.
    Most of these kinds of proclamations are made from epidemiological
    studies, which cannot ever assess cause and effect, and there seems to
    be little interest on the part of the groups that have the money (like
    NIH) to do careful long term studies of different diets. So, all this is
    basically guess work…Dwight McKee MD

  11. In light of this video, I’m wondering if someone help me make sense of the following:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16340654

    http://www.metabolismjournal.com/article/S0026-0495(12)00318-6/abstract

    Zazpe I, et al.Egg consumption and risk
    of cardiovascular disease in the SUN Project . Eur J Clin Nutr. (2011)

    Hu FB, et al.A prospective study of egg consumption and risk of
    cardiovascular disease in men and women . JAMA. (1999)

    Scrafford CG, et al. Egg consumption and CHD and stroke mortality: a prospective study of US adults. Public Health Nutr. (2011)

    Nakamura Y, et al. Egg consumption, serum total cholesterol concentrations and coronary heart disease incidence: Japan Public Health Center-based prospective study. Br J Nutr. (2006)

    Djoussé L, Gaziano JM. Egg consumption in relation to cardiovascular disease and mortality: the Physicians’ Health Study. Am J Clin Nutr.
    (2008)

    Qureshi AI, et al. Regular egg consumption does not increase the risk of stroke and cardiovascular diseases. Med Sci Monit. (2007)

    Njike V, et al. Daily egg consumption in hyperlipidemic adults–effects on
    endothelial function and cardiovascular risk. Nutr J. (2010)

    Fernandez ML. Dietary cholesterol provided by eggs and plasma lipoproteins in healthy populations. Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. (2006)

    Jones PJ. Dietary cholesterol and the risk of cardiovascular disease in
    patients: a review of the Harvard Egg Study and other data. Int J Clin
    Pract Suppl. (2009)

    http://www.bmj.com/content/346/bmj.e8539

    What gives?

  12. In left wondering what is it about the eggs that would have this result.that was not made clear. Is it the high cholesterol in the yolk? Our the white, or both?

  13. I have type II DM a1c was 18 4weeks ago. Uncontrolled Dm for 5years with a poor diet and no meds. My bs avg was 300-600 daily. I changed my diet 4weeks ago to a high protein low carb no complex carb diet. All my carbs coming from the simple carbs in skim milk. I eat 6 egg whites a day raw in my protein shakes. Workout 6 days a week and my bs has not bbeen over 90 in 4weeks with no meds!!

  14. I’m a vegetarian and have also cut out dairy and I try to eat vegan most of the time, though I do enjoy eggs from the farmers market. My issue with these studies is that I always wonder if they take into account the rest of the individual’s diet and life style. I would suspect that a person who eats a lot of eggs may also easy a lot of cheese or bacon, for example.

  15. This makes no sense. I don’t buy it. Yes, eating more plants or all plants is better for your, but, no doubt the other 99% of your nutrition has far more to do with diabetes than an egg. The study would have to be run with people eating an all vegan diet and adding the eggs to see the difference. Otherwise there’s no way to tell for sure. Was the study group washing down there eggs with soda? Who knows.

  16. Im just curious if there was any research done on eggs cooked differently like hard boiled vs fried. And if theres any difference if maybe someone ate egg whites only?

  17. the Wellness center that I’m going to for treating my diabetes without drugs changing my whole way of eating, all whole foods, veggies & some fruits and supplements, told me today that if you have diabetes you cannot be a vegetarian because you need the protein in animal fat – is that true??

    1. Martha: This is patently UNtrue. I highly recommend that you read the book “Dr. Neal Barnard’s Program for Reversing Diabetes – The Scientifically Proven System for Reversing Diabetes Without Drugs”

      Bottom line: Dr. Barnard ran a clinical trial where people were able to reverse their Type 2 diabetes by changing their diet to a vegan, whole plant food based diet. His diet is “3 times more effective than other diet plans”. And there is no animal protein or fat in the diet.

      The book not only includes great info, but recipes. I highly recommend it.

      I’m sorry to hear you have diabetes. I hope you are able to get it under control. Good luck.

        1. Kim Y: No, no. I’m sorry if I gave that impression. I try hard to say often that I am not an expert of any kind. I’m more of a “power user” of information, having spend several years now studying and learning what I can in my smattering of free time. I’m just a lay person who happens to know a little bit more than the average lay person in America.

          But I’m not nearly as advanced as other commenters on this site such as Toxins and Darryl and others. I just try to share what I know in a user-friendly way. Also, by volunteering on this site, I hope to help create a community of respectful people who are interested in learning and sharing together how to be healthy through diet.

  18. Just HOW do eggs cause diabetes? Until you can show me the scientific or chemical route in which eggs directly cause diabetes, I won’t believe it.

    1. Mk Grant: Your skepticism is healthy and fully understandable given the brainwashing we get about eggs.

      My understanding is that we don’t know the exact mechanisms which cause type 2 diabetes, but we have a good theory that is backed by strong science. Dr. Barnard explains the mechanism by which fat build-up in cells over time lead to type 2 diabetes.

      Here is a quote from figure caption in the book: “Normally, insulin attaches to receptors on the cell’s surface and signals the cell membrane to allow glucose to enter. However, if fat, called intromyocellular lipid, accumulates inside the cell, it interferes with insulin’s intracellular signaling process. Tiny organelles, called mitochondria, are supposed to burn fat, and their failure to keep up with the accumulating fat may be the original of type 2 diabetes. Luckily, evidence shows that diet changes can reduce the amount of fat inside the cell.”

      You would learn more details about this process by reading the book of course:
      http://www.amazon.com/Neal-Barnards-Program-Reversing-Diabetes/dp/1594868107/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1386875271&sr=8-1&keywords=dr.+barnard+diabetes

      What all this means is that the problems type 2 diabetics have with blood sugar is a symptom, not the cause of the disease. And as I said, the science seems to back this up. If you get the fat out of your cells, your body can regulate the blood sugars very well.

      So, how does this relate to eggs? I’m thinking about the fat in the eggs that goes far above the 10% fat (if memory serves) that Dr. Barnard shoots for with the patients in the clinical trial. I personally think that there may be something about the protein in the egg whites that also contributes given the findings of the studies from this video, but that’s just a layman’s wonderings.

      Something to think about.

      1. So easy to eat too much fat…. peanut butter and tahini are my major culprits …. one needs to be really careful not to eat too much of our favourite fats…..

        1. re: easy…
          Amen! But I clearly have bigger vices than you. I still eat way too much chocolate, etc. I consider the nut and seed butters to be generally healthier. And I eat too many of those too.

          At least I know what is healthy and am working towards it. I try not to be too hard on myself. Then again, maybe it is about time I got a little more discipline…

          1. Well, we all have our vices (mine is not chocolate or sugar though). If the omega-6:omega-3 story is true, then tahini and peanut butter are some of the worst sources in my diet; the only thing that could be worse is industrial seed oils.

      2. Thank you very much. So, in his book, does the Dr. teach how to remove the fat from the cells? I’m assuming it’s not just a matter of limiting the fat in one’s diet?

        1. You assume wrong! :-) It turns out that getting rid of the fat in one’s diet is the key.

          In the chapter “How to Get Started”, Dr. Barnard summarizes that the key to success is to eat foods that are 1) vegan (100%!), 2) low fat (no or little oil), and 3) low glycemic.

          Of course, he defines low glycemic in a rational way. Low GI foods include: beans/legumes, green leafy vegetables, most fruits, barley, etc. and “Surprisingly, pasta has a low glycemic index, unlike other wheat products.” (Personally, I’m a huge fan of brown rice pasta, which gets me both good-textured pasta and whole grain.)

          I really do highly recommend the book for more detailed info than I can give here.

        2. Thea’s post gave an excellent overview of the science behind the current best paradigm that type two diabetes is a “sugar” actually glucose processing problem caused by fats in the diet. You need to reduce fats both animal and concentrated plant sources such as oils to give the body the best chance to reverse the disease. By following the whole plant based diet without oils you improve your chance of avoiding, reversing and/or curing type two diabetes. Animal foods are very high in fat. You can check the details out at cronometer.com. Eggs are just high in fat. They don’t cause type two diabetes they just increase your risk of getting it and if you have it get in your bodies way of reversing it. Of course there are alot of other reasons not to eat eggs from a health standpoint. If you eat the correct diet you will decrease your total calorie intake and your body will clear the fat our of your cells and decrease the size of your fat cells. Fat cells are metabolically active. It is possible that they may contribute indirectly to type two diabetes. It is clear if we lose body fat we lower our risk for a variety of conditions.

      3. Physical activity is one of the best ways for decreasing the amount of fat in cells. I personally don’t think that egg consumption is one of the main causes for the development of type 2 diabetes. A high intake of simple carbohydrates is one of the main contributors to type 2 diabetes. Where do we find this type of carbohydrates? In refined flour, sugars (soft drinks and other sweetened beverages) and other type of caloric sweeteners such as HFCS. The constant stimulation of the pancreatic cells by high intake of simple carbohydrates eventually may lead to type 2 diabetes. Of course, high intake of saturated fat and trans fat may increase your cardiovascular risk associated with type 2 diabetes.
        Instead of trying to blame certain “whole-foods”, how about we focus on limiting or avoiding high processed foods with high amounts of sugar, saturated and trans fats and sodium?

  19. Congrats you can be the worlds second worst scientist right behind the most dangerous killer of humans in history–Dr. Ancel Keys and his proven bogus “cholesterol theory” What bullshit ! Dr. you need to go back to the drawing board with your studies. Severely FLAWED

    1. Doug: You can disagree all you want. You can even assert the most silly of pseudo-science. We allow it all the time. But we do not allow personal attacks. This is a site for mature adults only. I am deleting your comment. Feel free to post again if you can follow the rules.

  20. Here is a reference to a much larger study which states an opposing opinion:

    “In multivariable-adjusted models, there was no association between egg consumption and increased risk of T2D in either sex and overall. In a secondary analysis, dietary cholesterol was not associated with incident diabetes (P for trend = 0.47). In addition, egg consumption was not associated with clinically meaningful differences in fasting glucose, fasting insulin, or measures of insulin resistance despite small absolute analytic differences that were significant.”

    http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/early/2010/06/09/ajcn.2010.29406.abstract

  21. please remove the last comment I posted, for some reason the video is wrong! I meant to post the video by Will Tuttle PhD on youtube.

  22. Stupidity squared!
    Not a single shred of evidence!
    As Mark Twain has said:
    There are three kinds of lies:
    Lies
    Damn Lies
    Statistics

  23. Was this a controlled study? How do you do it, you have people eating the exact same thing and change just the amount of eggs they eat? Seems to me like the usual crappy food science you see every day. Yesterday eggs where the best food for you, today they can kill you, tomorrow who knows.

  24. An interesting question. Why is everyone so concerned about eggs? I was at one time in my life, stuggling to get my choestrol numbers in line. Then I came across whole30 eating (not really a diet, but rather a new way of looking at food and then choosing goog foods) concept. See the book It Starts With Food”.

    Now I eat three eggs every morning for breakfast, i have a healthy diet, eating lots of veggies & fresh fruit, I eat most all meats in moderation. No grains, very little dairy, only certain nuts (cashues & almonds), sweet potatoes, not white and watch the carbs, I hate the energy spikes they give you, and no sugar. That’s why I love eggs, the protein gives me energy and satisfies my desire for in between snacks.

    I exercise regularly, i.e. before work i ride 32 kilometers every other day on the bike (Heart rate never more then average 115 bpm) plus Sat & Sunday. I go to bed at 9:00 PM and get up at 4:00 AM every day. I am a MD of small manufacturing company and so put in a good 9-10 hrs. Every day, with energy to spare. I am 64 years old, love my work and have time for family life.

    Guess what ALL of my colestrol figures are the best I’ve ever had

  25. I was diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes September 2013.

    I think I had it for a while, just didn’t know what was causing the symptoms.

    I was extremely thirsty, drinking brita pitchers of water and was still

    tongue stuck to the roof of my mouth thirst. I would have terrible

    nausea and vomiting bouts, vomited anything I ate, even water.

    Slowly my body would recover, I would eat tiny teaspoon of honey,

    because it was the only thing that would stay down.

    My doctor, Dr. Alan Kavetz put me on Kombiglyze XR.

    He also gave me a list of food to cut out, white rice, potatoes, bagels, etc.

    On my own, I bought a blender and go to a Fairway near me, buy

    Kale, Dandelion Root, Spinach, Broccoli, Cauliflower, Beets and make

    a slurpee of this and eat it. It helped my symptoms.

    But on the internet, I found this vegetable called Bitter Melon.

    I wanted to stop taking the Kombiglyze XR, because it is linked to

    Pancreatic Cancer. Bitter Melon does keep my symptoms under control.

    In NYC Chinatown, it’s all over the place, for a $1.00 each.

    In the Union Square Whole Foods, when they have it, it cost $5.00 for

    each one. I stopped taking Bitter Melon, because I ran out and my

    vomiting, nausea, sweating, feel like there there are ants crawling

    underneath my skin, my toes and soles of my feet, pinpricks of pain.

    It feels bad. My son took me to Whole Foods Union Square,

    where Lo & Behold they had the Bitter Melon vegetable.

    I bought 5, hurried home and put it in the blender with the other vegetables.

    My symptoms began to subside and by the next day, they were gone.

    I take the Bitter Melon supplement that I find in Vitamin Shoppe.

    I have tried Bitter Melon Solaray and Himalaya.

    But I find, that for me, they do not work, I still get the symptoms.
    It’s only the vegetable, Bitter Melon, eating it that I get relief.
    I do not like the taste of Bitter Melon and I have to force myself to eat it.
    I am 63 year old Female.

  26. What makes egg eaters so unhealthy – almost as unhealthy as pork eaters? The cholesterol in the yolk of the egg only raises our blood cholesterol slightly – not nearly as much as eating saturated fat or trans fat. The choline>>TMAO connection could be an important cause but can’t possibly explain the whole misfortune by itself. The nitrosamines, heterocyclic amines, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, dietary advanced glycation endproducts, dietary advanced lipoxidation endproducts, alkanals, alkenals, and trans fatty acids are present in fried eggs but not in hard-boiled or poached eggs that have no salt added. Pathogenic bacteria can be present in raw eggs but not in hard-boiled or poached eggs. Anyhow, the eating of raw eggs is extremely uncommon. Heme iron, a pro-oxidant, is present in all eggs but total iron is actually quite low in eggs compared to meats and fish. Furthermore, most of the small amount of iron in eggs is the less harmful nonheme type. Also, eggs contain phosvitin, a protein compound that binds iron molecules together and strongly prevents the human body from absorbing iron from foods. The arsenic that egg farmers feed to hens to keep them free of diseases doesn’t get into the eggs that humans will later eat. So the only remaining possibility are the cancer-causing synthetic estrogens that egg farmers feed to hens to increase egg production and keep egg prices as low as possible:
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/20104980

  27. Dear Dr. Greger
    I am an amateur bodybuilder and I’ve recently replaced my whey (milk) powder protein with black beans and soy milk after watching your videos. However there are times throughout the day where I must take protein but no carbs. It’s simply a rule that I must follow to make maximum muscular development. My question is, if my only option for high protein low carb food is to eat whey protein isolate or egg whites, which would you suggest? I need to consume about 30 egg whites in addition to my soy milk and black bean protein in order to meet my daily protein requirement. All the negative things about cholestrol and choline are only in the yolk, and there’s less choline in an egg white than there is in a vegetable.(virtually no choline in egg whites) One egg white contains 3.6g of protein, while a scoop of whey protein contains 30g.
    Thanks in advance,
    P.S. I love your videos.
    Sincerely,
    M.K.

    1. What is your evidence that your body requires pure protein and no carbs for muscular development?
      “The anabolic phase is a critical phase occurring within 45 minutes post-exercise. It is during this time that muscle cells are particularly sensitive to insulin, making it necessary to ingest the proper nutrients in order to make gains in muscle endurance and strength. If the proper nutrients are ingested 2 – 4 hours post-exercise they will not have the same effect. It is also during this time in which the anabolic hormones begin working to repair the muscle and decrease its inflammation.
      Immediate ingestion of carbohydrate is important because insulin sensitivity causes the muscle cell membranes to be more permeable to glucose within 45 minutes post-exercise. This results in faster rates of glycogen storage and provides the body with enough glucose to initiate the recovery process (Burke et al., 2003). Muscle glycogen stores are replenished the fastest within the first hour after exercise. Consuming carbohydrate within an hour after exercise also helps to increase protein synthesis (Gibala, 2000).”

      Gibala, M.J. (2000). Nutritional supplementation and resistance exercise: what is the evidence for enhanced skeletal muscle hypertrophy. Canadian Journal of Applied Physiology, 25(6), 524-535.

      There is no evidence that one must supplement dietary protein in order to gain muscle mass. As long as one consumes adequate calories then adequate protein will also be met. Basically, eat when your hungry, till your full. It may be difficult at first to accept that your body does not need to supplement protein but it is unfounded to believe otherwise.

    2. I agree with Toxins excellent post. If you want to read more about protein I would suggest articles in three of Dr. McDougall’s newsletters, see 12/2003(History), 4/2007(sources) and 1/2003(overload). I would not recommend protein supplementation as a path to improved health. Although the science is changing and new science is coming out so you need to stay tuned.

    3. M.K.:

      I think the answers you already got are top-knotch. But if you are still convinced that you need to supplement, I would refer to you to the the following article and link. If memory serves, these guys were recommending a particular vegan protein powder at a VegFest Conference I attended a few months ago. If you look at their profiles on the site linked to below, you can see what supplements/protein powders each person recommends/uses.

      (from meatout mondays)
      Vegan Bodybuilders Dominate Texas Competition

      The Plant Built (PlantBuilt.com) team rolled into this
      year’s drug-free, steroid-free Naturally Fit Super Show competition in Austin, TX, and walked away with more trophies than even they could carry.

      The Plant Built team of 15 vegan bodybuilders competed in
      seven divisions, taking first place in all but two. They also took several 2nd and 3rd place wins.

      For More Info:
      http://www.plantbuilt.com/

      Hope that helps!

  28. quoting from the study:
    “We did not collect information on whether participants consumed egg yolk
    (rich in cholesterol) to further examine
    the contribution of dietary cholesterol from eggs
    on type 2 diabetes risk in this study. In addition, we had limited
    dietary
    data for men to further assess the interplay of
    eggs and other foods, energy, and nutrients with the risk of type 2
    diabetes.”

    The second sentence is of particular relevance to this articles headline. Could it be that the self-reporting participants were eating their eggs with high-carb foods such as white toast with jelly/jam, potatoes, sugary coffee, etc.? I think it’s a rather irresponsible study and a rather irresponsible statement to make as a headline just to draw readership.

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2628696/

  29. Couple of things…

    * One of the cited sources says: “In multivariable-adjusted models, there was no association between egg consumption and increased risk of Type 2 Diabetes in either sex and overall. In a secondary analysis, dietary cholesterol was not associated with incident diabetes (P for trend = 0.47). In addition, egg consumption was not associated with clinically meaningful differences in fasting glucose, fasting insulin, or measures of insulin resistance despite small absolute analytic differences that were significant.”

    * Everyone associates eggs with an increased risk for heart disease. It’s very likely the people in these studies who ate more eggs were less health conscious than those who didn’t.

    * These are all observational studies.

    * Here are 3 randomized controlled trials that show eggs are very beneficial in people with diabetes and metabolic syndrome:

    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21134328
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24079288
    http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23021013

  30. Odd that my husband has diabetes and has always had normal to slightly low cholesterol levels. And yes, I know about the ratio. My mother(82) and father(83) ate eggs every morning all my life as have I, and we all have had normal levels with no diabetes, heart disease or dementia.

  31. So , all the older folks in my family who ate eggs all their lives , and did not get diabetes , means nothing ! I rather think it is the sugar , and meat protein that is the cause of this “epidemic ” of type2 ! If it was not on your great grandmother’s plate , it ain’t food ! Farmers have gone out of their way to kill bugs, and we eat the results ! They have given fertilizers the go ahead , and we eat the resulting crop ! Growth hormones , insecticides ,,,,,,,! There’s ya problem right there !

  32. I wonder weather the problem with egg consumption is at all connected with what egg producing chicken have been fed. Do organic eggs have the same effect? Any mention of this in the studies?

    1. Andy: I would guess that the connection between eggs and diabetes is related to the yolk more than the white. However, there are other health problems with the egg whites. So, it is best not to eat any part of an egg.

      Here are some of the problems with the egg white:
      Dr. Barnard talks about the problems that animal protein presents for kidney health. Other experts talk about the (strong in my opinion) link between animal protein and cancer. The question scientists then want to answer is: Is there a causal link? If so, what is the mechanism by which animal protein might cause cancer?

      If memory serves, Dr Campbell in The China Study mentions several ways in which we think that animal protein causes and promotes cancer. Here on NutritionFacts, you can get a great education on how animal protein is linked to the body’s over-production of a growth hormone called IGF-1. IGF-1 helps cancer to grow. To watch the series about IGF-1, click on the link below and then keep clicking the “next video” link on the button to the right until you get through the bodybuilding video. Then you will have seen the entire series.
      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/igf-1-as-one-stop-cancer-shop/

      And Darryl recently reminded me about the methionine issue. Egg whites have *the* highest concentration of methionine of any food:
      http://nutritiondata.self.com/foods-000084000000000000000.html?categories=1,18,9,0,13,14,5,4,42,16,17,15,6,3,2,11,7,19,21,12,10,8,22
      Dr. Greger did a nice video showing the link between methionine and cancer. So, there are two clear pathways linking animal proteins, especially egg whites, to cancer.
      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/starving-cancer-with-methionine-restriction/

      Darryl also pointed out that, “…high methionine diets increase coronary risk in humans. In its associations with cardiovascular disease and other disorders, homocysteine may be functioning partly as a marker for the major culprit, excess methionine.”
      http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0939475305001092

      And while I can’t find it right now, I believe that Toxins has pointed out two other health issues with egg whites.

      With all of the information we have about the harmful effects of animal protein in general and egg white in particular, I think it’s best to stay away from egg white. Why not get your protein from safe sources? Sources which are known to have lots of positive health effects and will naturally give you a balanced amount of protein? (ie: whole plant foods) Make sense?

      1. I know this is a little late …But then why does Dr Ornish allow egg whites and has shown reversal with them in his diet plan? Thanks.

  33. Were the eggs from organically-raised chickens?… What type of diet were the participants eating – the SAD? Were the participants also eating toast made of Wonder bread spread with margarine?… Were the participants on a calorie or methionine restricted diet?…. This “study” was a SELF-REPORTED study with WAY too many variables to lead to any type of logical conclusion. :-)

  34. How one linear are those studies? Don’t those people who consume eggs in the morning, eat bacon, sausage with it as well..? I eat a lot of eggs, love em. Eggs and milk cream (organic) have helped me get over a depression due to the fat content. I feel great after drinking a glass of milk cream, helps me sleep. I don’t know. I am so tired of all this contradicting advice out there… I think Dr. Greger is right in one thing; all that contradicting info is dangerous.
    I have been, for the past 25 years, trying to be a conscious, healthy eater, a vegetarian and still ended up with a 106 fasting blod sugar… No family history, always active, go to the gym, etc. So frustrating. And Im not the only one like that. I have friends who are like me; seemingly perfect, clean, healthy diets and diabetic.
    So let’s not talk about unhealthy diet, obesity and diabetics as this is obvious. Let’s talk about the cases where people are doing everything right or almost everything right!

  35. I know this is a little late …But then why does Dr Ornish allow egg
    whites and has shown reversal with them in his diet plan? Thanks

  36. I know this is a little late …But then why does Dr Ornish allow egg
    whites and has shown reversal with them in his diet plan? Thanks

  37. I am now 70 y.o. Since arriving in Australia from Sicily in 1955, age 10, I
    have eaten a minimum of 2 eggs @ day ; sometimes 4, now and then 6, and Only
    Once I ate 8 eggs in one day when a lady friend made me an omelette with 6 eggs.
    I have estimated that in the last 60 years I have eaten over 42,000 eggs (i.e.
    3,500 dozens). My total cholesterol is currently 3.9 – I am very healthy, and
    every new person I meet tells me that I look at least 10 years younger. Eggs are
    the Most Nutritious Food There Is. It has to be, because if the egg is
    fertilized (by a sperm) the egg’s contents Must Contain All The Ingredients
    Necessary for the formation of a living being – a Chick – with bones, heart,
    liver, kidneys, thyroid gland, eyes, ears, nose, mouth, alimentary canal,
    reproductive system, brain, etc. It therefore has to contain All of the
    Essential Amino Acids (for all various proteins production), Essential Fatty
    Acids, Minerals, Vitamins, etc. Once the fertilized egg is laid, it cannot
    receive any further nutrients from the hen that laid it, unlike a human
    fertilized egg (ovum) that becomes a fetus inside a placenta that is connected
    to the mother and gets ALL of It’s Nutrients From It’s Mother right-up until it
    is born and the umbilical cord is cut. Even though it has now been known for
    over 15 years that the ingestion of cholesterol does NOT increase blood
    cholesterol, people are still fearful of eating eggs. To those people I would
    suggest they eat foods containing “soluble fiber’ together with eggs, because
    the soluble fiber attaches itself to the cholesterol and literally drags it out
    of the body (as feces), because ‘fiber is NOT absorbed by the intestines. People
    who don’t want to increase their Blood Cholesterol Should NOT Eat Foods that
    Contain SATURATED FATS, because the liver uses Saturated Fat, as one of the
    ingredients, in order to produce Cholesterol.

    1. Great read sir and congrats…But I have read that saturated fat from healthy sources like grass feed beef or grass feed organic elk,bison,and ostrich or organic bug eating and cage free chicken is also not the villain and is not the main culprit in heart disease.Along with lots of vegetables and legumes and no sugar,processed meat and trans fat and refined carbs contribute more to heart disease.

  38. ” In multivariable-adjusted models, there was no association between egg consumption and increased risk of T2D in either sex and overall.”

    Just citing the 4. Source …

  39. Just wondering, did any of the people eating eggs and bacon during the studies forgo toast and highly processed cereal as they consumed the animal products? I believe in my own experiences that the highly abused wheat products Americans consume in mass quantities exacerbate the damage that animal products are implicated in doing.

    1. Barry: Lots of people share your question. And given how much attention is paid to the yolks, it’s no wonder the white seem like they might be OK. Here’s the answer that I give when people ask about egg whites:

      ———-
      There are two problems with eggs, the yolk and the white. (To paraphrase Dr. Barnard.) Egg whites are likely a big problem health-wise, just like the yolks. It is true that egg whites do not have cholesterol. But egg whites are essentially all animal protein. Here’s what we know about animal protein in general and egg whites in particular:

      Dr. Barnard links potential kidney problems to animal protein (though I don’t have the details on that). And Dr. Greger talks about the problems of animal protein in general in his annual summary video, “Food as Medicine: Preventing and Treating the Most Dreaded Diseases with Diet” http://nutritionfacts.org/video/food-as-medicine

      Here on NutritionFacts, you can get a great education on how animal protein is linked to the body’s over-production of a growth hormone called IGF-1. IGF-1 helps cancer to grow. To watch the series about IGF-1, click on the link below and then keep clicking the “next video” link on the button to the right until you get through the bodybuilding video. Then you will have seen the entire series.
      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/igf-1-as-one-stop-cancer-shop/

      Here’s another great tidbit from NutritionFacts on another mechanism linking egg whites to cancer as well as increased virus infections: “why would animal protein and fat increase cancer risk? Well, as I noted in Bowel Wars, if you eat egg whites, for example, between 5 and 35% of the protein isn’t digested, isn’t absorbed, and ends up in the colon, where it undergoes a process called putrefaction. When animal protein putrefies in the gut, it can lead to the production of the rotten egg gas, hydrogen sulfide, which, over and above its objectionable odor, can produce changes that increase cancer risk. Putrefying protein also produces ammonia.”
      To learn more details about the process, check out:
      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/putrefying-protein-and-toxifying-enzymes/

      Darryl at one point reminded me of the methionine issue. Egg whites have *the* highest concentration of methionine of any food:
      http://nutritiondata.self.com/foods-000084000000000000000.html?categories=1,18,9,0,13,14,5,4,42,16,17,15,6,3,2,11,7,19,21,12,10,8,22
      Dr. Greger did a nice video showing the link between methionine and cancer.
      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/starving-cancer-with-methionine-restriction/

      Darryl also pointed out that, “…high methionine diets increase coronary risk in humans. In its associations with cardiovascular disease and other disorders, homocysteine may be functioning partly as a marker for the major culprit, excess methionine.”
      http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0939475305001092

      Dr. Greger recently posted some videos on how animal protein can raise insulin levels. The first of the following videos even specifically addresses egg whites.
      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/paleo-diets-may-negate-benefits-of-exercise/#comment-1978464793
      http://nutritionfacts.org/video/if-white-rice-is-linked-to-diabetes-what-about-china/

      In summary: there are at least three pathways potentially linking animal proteins, especially egg whites, to cancer: the IGF-1, methionine, and putrefaction. And there is some good evidence that egg white consumption contributes to heart disease and potential problems with T2 diabetes by raising insulin levels in a bad way. All of these reductionist-type studies lend support the bigger general population studies showing that the healthiest populations on earth are those which eat the least amount of animal protein.

      With all of the information we have about the harmful effects of animal protein in general and egg white in particular, I think it’s best to stay away from egg white. Why not get your protein from safe sources? IE: Sources which are known to have lots of positive health effects and will naturally give you a balanced amount of protein? (ie: whole plant foods) Make sense?

  40. Eggs are one of the best sources of choline. Choline deficiency causes accumulation of belly fat and insulin resistance, and a whole lot more (brain fog!!!).https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/17716355?dopt=AbstractPlus

    I eat 3 eggs a day and my physical exams come out perfect-ridiculous to say that eggs cause insulin resistance/diabetes. Look more carefully at these studies. In the Physician’s Study, the people who ate more eggs ate a lot more of everything, including fruits and vegetables, plus they didn’t exercise. Also, the men drank more alcohol. They were just over-eating slug-a beds. No wonder they ended up with a lot physical problems.

    1. Though lower levels than found in eggs, shrimp and scallops, veg food sources of choline include broccoli, collard greens, Swiss chards, spinach, cauliflower, green beans, ….

  41. The summaries of various research seems compelling, but perhaps misleading. Eggs contribute to higher HDL (good) and LDL (type A-good & B-bad) levels, but LDL type B needs carbs to make it a problem. Would the results of any of these studies be different if the participants were eating low-carb?

    1. pelopidas: The yolk has the fat so it is the yolk that contributes to what we believe is the main cause of diabetes.
      .
      However, the white is pure animal protein and there is some correlation between too much animal protein and diabetes also. “Darryl”, a participant on this site, recently posted about that connection, including lots of links to studies. I can link you to Darryl’s post if you are interested.
      .
      Also note that egg white is linked to cancer promotion I various ways. Egg white is not a safe / healthy food either. As Dr. Barnard says, there’s only two problems with eggs! The yolk and the white. ;-)

      1. Thea, I do wonder what it is about eggs causing the diabetes more so than fish or shellfish would. Could it be the high cholesterol is the biggest issue? But shrimp are high in cholesterol and do not seem to raise diabetes risk. And fatty fish as well. I simple want to understand the science.

        Thanks.

        1. Suede: When someone gets a enough of a problem called “insulin resistance”, the problem is called type 2 diabetes. NutritionFacts just came out with a new video explaining what causes (or at least one of the main causes) of type 2 diabetes: http://nutritionfacts.org/video/what-causes-insulin-resistance/ Another important video for understanding the cause of type 2 diabetes is the following video on the spillover effect: http://nutritionfacts.org/video/the-spillover-effect-links-obesity-to-diabetes/. I’m hoping that these two videos will help you answer your questions about eggs.

          1. Yeah, i’ve looked through those videos. A single egg does not actually contain that much fat, very little actually in the grand scheme. Still confused why the science DR. G shows regarding eggs and diabetes way more so than many other high fat meats and fish. What specifically is it about eggs? Many people eat high cholesterol fish and don’t have this issue. Hmmmm…. i’d rather not guess what it might be. maybe Dr. G you can ask? Thanks.

            1. Suede: I forwarded your question to our medical moderators. We don’t have enough volunteers to answer every question, but your question is now in the pile.

  42. I personally follow a WFPB diet and have seen dramatic improvements in my health. But… recently a FB friend diagnosed with Type II Diabetes has been posting his success in weight loss and dramatic improvements in bloodwork including improved blood sugar, and decrease in HDL and triglycerides. He is accomplishing this with exercise and following a high-fat Ketogenic diet, with increased consumption of meat, heavy cream, butter, bacon, etc. His blood work does not lie. He sent me a link to the medical research promoting this diet https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2716748/ This research goes against everything I’ve read based on the work of Dr. Greger, McDougall, Campbell and Esselstyn. While I have no intention on changing my WFPD, I am very confused and concerned about the conflicting research. Clarification on this would be greatly appreciated.

    1. Mark Rigsby: The following comment from moderator Darchite explains why the high fat diet is “working” for your friend. The gist is that your friend is treating the symptom of T2 diabetes, not the cause. A low fat WFPB diet treats the cause of T2 diabetes. The problem with your friends approach is that while it helps with T2 diabetes, it is likely very harmful for overall health, especially long term. Meanwhile, a low fat WFPB diet is known to promote long term health in health areas affected by food. In other words, it’s not just good for diabetes, but good for the heart, etc. Here’s the comment to learn more about why the two opposite diets work for T2 diabetes: http://nutritionfacts.org/2016/11/17/fat-is-the-cause-of-type-2-diabetes/#comment-3007013730 Does that help?

    2. Actually, those following a high fat, low sugar/carb diet all have improved bio markers for health. Read a study once in a while.

  43. This makes perfect sense to me… while I have never been much of a meat/poultry eater, I have consumed trillions of eggs ( exaggerating of course) between butter, eggs and cream, I now have the reason for my type 2 diabetes. I am currently following Dr. Gregers WFPB life style… and miss eggs terribly, however I feel beyond incredible for the first in a long time. Keep up the good work Dr. G

    1. Barbara Thornberry: Good for you for making the hard call, but ultimately helping yourself.

      I have a suggestions for you: I recommend getting Dr. Barnard’s book about reversing T2 diabetes. The book not only confirms the research that you have learned here on NutritionFacts (and some of which Dr. Barnard did himself), but also includes some meal plans and recipes. You may already be eating just like Dr. Barnard recommends, but it might not hurt to take a look at the book to see if you want to make any tweaks to your diet. The book is: https://www.amazon.com/Neal-Barnards-Program-Reversing-Diabetes/dp/1594868107/ref=sr_1_1_twi_pap_1?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1489165785&sr=1-1&keywords=barnard+diabetes

      My other thought is to offer sympathy and potential assistance. You mentioned that you miss eggs terribly. I hear you. Most people miss cheese more than anything else, but for some people, the real pain is the lack of eggs. There are, however, several tricks for egg replacements that can be satisfying. If are interested and want to share in what format you are missing eggs, I might have some ideas. Are you missing omelets? Hard boiled eggs? Meringue? Baked goods? Fluffy pancakes? ???

  44. I’m trying to understand why doctors have encouraged eating protein (meat or eggs) with starches to mitigate the effects of the carb on insulin and glucose if in fact eggs and meat exacerbate the condition. I saw this article and it seems to support the conventional guidance to reduce carbs and increase protein http://jn.nutrition.org/content/136/10/2506.full/%22%22

    Can you offer further guidance?

    1. Hey Maria, thanks for writing! The first thing I noted was that the research here was done in NONDIABETIC humans. Second, it was a little dated – eleven years old. I’ll come back to the research itself in just a few moments.

      When you say that ” doctors have encouraged eating protein (meat or eggs) with starches to mitigate the effects of the carb on insulin and glucose” please keep in mind that Doctors know very little about nutrition, a point discussed by Dr. Greger in this video: https://nutritionfacts.org/video/convincing-doctors-to-embrace-lifestyle-medicine/. Taking advice from people who have had ONE CLASS on nutrition puts you in company with someone who knows as much about diet as a first-year nutrition student (usually 18-19 years of age.)

      Back to the research. Adding animal protein to carbs actually INCREASES the sugar spike after meals, because there are an abundant number of amino acids that are ‘glucogenic’ – i.e., give rise to sugar – in animal flesh, eggs, and dairy products. The inflammation caused by animal foods also in a fundamental cause of insulin resistance, which is at the root of type II diabetes (see the video: https://nutritionfacts.org/video/why-is-meat-a-risk-factor-for-diabetes/). I hope this helps!

  45. This is my experience about eating eggs. My glucose fasting test result for 12/12/2015 was listed as 6.2 H…for 13/9/2016..8.1 H and 13/2/2017 also 8.1 H, these are Australian measurements and may be different than tests done in the US. So I went from being a borderline diabetic to a full blown one, since 8.1 is High. So I was a diabetic 2 now.
    So finally I decided to do a diet with the aim of getting rid of the complaint and not just controlling it. I have eaten eggs all my life along with cakes lots of ice cream and all the sugar stuff like chocolates and iced coffees loaded with cream and ice cream. I just loved food all my life. So because I didn’t want to end up blind or have some amputations I had to really get serious about my plan. I am sixty eight years old now.

    On Saturday 16th September(Australian time) this year I chose to count my calories which would be under 1000 a day, but on this first day I only had 710 cals but didn’t allow for the salad of tomato,onion,lettuce and tomato, my protein was three eggs, one small chicken burger from a supermarket which was in a light crumb and three slices of cheese. So until today November 1st 2017 the daily meal has been much the same and with apples and oranges . My daily intake was around 8 to 900 cals a day, a severe diet where I wanted cakes and ice cream etc. But everyday I included three eggs without fail because I didn’t feel hungry after eating them. Also I suffered from high blood pressure for years and was on beta blockers. I had a fasting blood test on October 25th to check my glucose and so yesterday I phoned my medical center to get the results and so now I do not have diabetes 2, the result was 5.4 which is normal, my Cholesterol was no change from four previous tests and was still 4.2 (good). Today I went to see my doctor and she was really pleased but shocked at my diet of less than a 1000 cals a day BUT I told her I got the result I wanted, she weighed me, the last time I saw her I was 81 kilos and now today I was 71, my blood pressure was also normal. During this diet I was active and had the energy to do stuff and walk on my tread mill for 20 minutes every few days. So when anyone tells me that eggs are bad I know they were not bad for me and they helped me restore my health. About three weeks into my diet I would grind two tablespoon of Flax seeds and add warm water to them and drink them and I also took cell salt tonic 12 2 tablets three times a day and I felt these have helped me too. I will remain on this diet until I go down to 10/ 1/2 to 11 stone and then I will increase the calorie intake to stay the weight I want to be. I am not giving up on eggs at all. I have the real evidence to prove they are OK. :)

  46. My wife has diabetes and tried to eat vegan this summer after ending up in hospital. Her values came down from 30 to regular 5-6 and she could start lowering her insulin.
    Then she paniced when she found out she had GAINED 15 pounds when she thought she was losing. She blamed it on the vegan food!
    I found out that it’s probably the insulin that’s the culprit.
    But then she had already started to eat “real protein” from fish and eggs.

    Now that I have been showing her your video about eggs, telling her that even ONE egg a week could be bad, she comes back to me with other articles that shows the opposite!! Check out this one:
    https://www.livestrong.com/article/535578-impact-of-eggs-on-blood-sugar-levels/

    What do I do? How can I convince her that eggs are bad when other articles say the opposite??!!
    What would Dr.Greger say?

    I also have another question that I cannot find a proper video for.
    Does it matter if you are only 98% vegan compared to being 100%?
    I have a friend who has problems with her joints and to her it matters.
    But what does science say? Are there any studies?
    Where can I ask this question? Is there a proper video?

    Thanks and regards
    Christer from Sweden

    1. Your wife may have been eating more calories than she was allowed for her daily intake. Eggs were not bad for me at all, I cured myself from diabetes eating three eggs a day during September to November this year (2017) I counted my calories to 900 a day. The eggs were organic and not farm produced where hens are kept in restricted cages. I laugh when I read negative articles about eating eggs. Vegan food can also be very high in calories. I have seen wonderful cake deserts made from cashews and coconut cream, no dairy etc but still high in calories. Tell your wife to find out what amount of calories she should be on per day to get rid of her extra pounds. There is an on-line site which will calculate it for her by her weight now, her age and her daily activity re exercise.

    2. Christer,
      I know how frustrating it can be trying to help a loved one make healthier food choices when there is so much misinformation that masks as science. The livestrong article mentions a study comparing an egg breakfast to a bagel breakfast. The bagel may have been vegan but I doubt is was 100% Whole Food Plant Based. Comparing an egg to a bagel made from refined flour it would not surprise me if the blood sugar goes up more with the bagel, especially in the short term. In fact, diabetics do tend to have less blood sugar rise after a protein meal, however, the animal protein and fat are doing damage to the organs that create more problems longer term. Diabetics also have less blood sugar rise after a WFPB meal and as a bonus also improve long term. Many type 2 diabetics have been cured with Whole Food Plant Food diets. See this link for examples and resources that hopefully your wife will view so she can make an informed decision about her health. http://www.pcrm.org/health/diabetes-resources.
      .

      1. Hi Kjgrier and Anne!

        Thanks for your replies.

        I am trying to understand and it seems there are two ways to go.

        You eat eggs and you actually can get rid of diabetes that way BUT there are long term risks involved.

        So what happens if you start using the “egg way” and when you get rid of the diabetes then you turn 100% vegan.

        Maybe that is easier, mentally, for people to do it?
        My wife just showed me her blood sugar meter with the last value – 4.9 – and meant “see what happens now that I eat eggs”.

        She thinks I am “religious” about being vegan and she doesn’t like that.

        I will study the link you sent me and hope I – we – can get some help through that.

        Thank you.

        1. Hello Christin,  my daughter is a qualified Naturopath so I am fortunate to listen to her when she explains the inner workings of the body, and that how we can all be very different meaning some herbs or food work for good or negative in us. For example I have no problems with eating lemons but other people get reactions etc.   I have eaten eggs all my life but not more than one every couple of days and certainly not three + every day. What I did stop eating was dairy like milk and butter, no white or brown sugars, flour. At my age it is not good to become totally vegan because one tends to loose muscle mass which is important to support and cushion our bones. Also I wouldn’t want to have to go and get B 12 injections at some stage, which will happen if I went completely vegan.  There are some amazing recipes for vegan food, so much so that my daughter was thinking of training to become a vegan chef adding it to her counselling skills of nutrition but we both decided we would not become vegan.My diet works well for me in that for two years I was listed as a diabetic with a reading of 8.01 and now just after two months of what I ate has brought my levels down to normal.  I also consider that it may also be due to only eating once a day and fasting for long hours till the next days meal. Fasting can be healing too.

  47. Is egg defined as including the yoke and albumen? Do studies look at the distinction between consumers of whole eggs, that is, yolk & albumen versus egg whites only?

    1. Well I have eaten all of the egg as it comes out of it’d shell. last week I had a blood test and my sugar level is still normal, even after eating treats over the holidays.  I also have an acquaintance, a lady who was a vegetarian and then changed( last two years)  over to become a vegan.  She has just had part of her kidney removed and now is waiting to find out if the spots on her liver are malignant.  Vegans do not have better health than people who aren’t as I see it .

  48. I would not take nutrition advice from anyone who promotes veganism. The lifestyle is based on ethical considerations, and is far from healthy compared to a more varied diet with lean meat, eggs, seafood and dairy products. You would do better getting rid of all processed foods along with anything containing white flour, sugar or high fructose corn syrup.

  49. This site is devoted to ethically protecting only one animal: humans. If you watch the videos on this site, you will see the unbiased evidence that clearly shows that people that eat lean meat, eggs, seafood and dairy products are at significantly increased risk for early death and disease. It’s like saying that mixing in a few cigarettes, some asbestos and plutonium is beneficial to your health. There is ZERO unbiased evidence that the food you list contributes to longevity. All evidence is to the contrary, although how you decide to live your life is totally up to you.

    Dr. G has extensive research reviews on this site that eliminating processed foods with white flour, sugar and HFCS is beneficial as well. These foods are not part of a WFPB lifestyle which is what Dr. G promotes.

    1. Well my diet was eggs, chicken and fish for one month on restricted calories and I got rid of my diabetes 2 four weeks later. My levels as of January are still normal, so I have to disagree. Also my father ate all these food all his life and lived to a good old age only dying from being in contact with asbestos in his younger years. People cook these foods in fat and flavorings full of sugar so really people who eat these foods may have to take a look how they get diabetes in the manner they are cooking the meat, eggs and fish. Moderation in all that we eat IS the key to health, I know of a lady who recently converted from being a vegetarian to being a vegan, she still has got cancer after years of no animal foods nor dairy.

      1. One person is not evidence of anything. These statistics are risk rates, not absolutes. In other words everyone that eats meat does not die young.
        I know cigarette smokers and asbestos inhalers that are in their 90s and don’t have cancer, yet. You won’t see the rest because they are already dead and gone. Do you feel lucky? I don’t, so I don’t court disaster so I eat the lowest risk foods.

        Sure you can control your blood sugar by eating nothing but meat, but that is not a sustainable lifestyle as no one can stay on that diet indefinitely. Keep in mind that permanent changes require permanent solutions. Eating 100% plants is doable as many of us do, and love it. I do not know a single person that eats nothing but meat and other animal products and can survive, and enjoy life that way. Besides, all available evidence points to the fact that you will not live as long eating meat as you will eating plants since animal products cause cancer. You won’t know this until its too late. Of course what you eat and believe is up to you.
        There are plenty of people that still think the earth is flat.

        Dr. Ben

        1. You can do and say what you like but I am walking evidence that I overcame this disease, got my blood pressure back to normal,  in fact my daughter also overcame renal failure much to the doctors surprise, so our diets are just fine which also include are own chemical free home grown salads and vegetables.  My daughter tried being a vegetarian but it made her sick.  I am here to make sure people know they can cure themselves if they know how to use moderation and keep the fat intake to a minimum.  People who love these foods find it hard to change so if they can get the idea that moderation is the better way then they can get rid of health issues or start to improve. We don’t feel lucky at all we just use commonsense and don’t follow everything people try to tell us.
          The bible states that the earth is a sphere. It’s not flat.

          1. Sounds like the $5 billion in annual food industry advertising propaganda has had their desired effect on you.

            You’re going to continue eating nothing but eggs, chicken, fish and vegetables without significant carbs? You’ll be the first person on the planet that can do that.

            Eggs are 73% of calories from fat. Salmon is 60% of calories from fat.
            Chicken thigh is 44% Calories from fat. You have an interesting definition of “low fat”.

            This site does not promote “vegetarianism” which can mean just about anything without meat.

            We have no agenda here other than the truth so we promote the peer-reviewed evidence. As I stated previously one person making a testimonial is not evidence. That’s like the 90 year old cigarette smoker saying “see, cigarettes are good for you: I’m living proof”

            Dr. Ben

        2. Maybe you didn’t read my original comment here , so here is part of what I posted…On Saturday 16th September(Australian time) this year I chose to count my calories which would be under 1000 a day, but on this first day I only had 710 cals but didn’t allow for the salad of tomato,onion,lettuce and tomato, my protein was three eggs, one small chicken burger from a supermarket which was in a light crumb and three slices of cheese. So until today November 1st 2017 the daily meal has been much the same and with apples and oranges… you seem to think I don’t eat vegetables or fruits

          I actually grow all my own salads and vegetables and I have my own walnut and almonds trees too so that when I want to use them they are taken off the plant and cooked a few minutes later ensuring I get the best quality in the plant, mostly eaten raw or juiced. Again I will tell you that I was sharing my experience and the fabulous results I got from it and eating eggs were not negative to me. Other people might give it a try and get the same results. I get health checks all the time and I have a nice flat stomach with no handlebars and hanging fat anywhere.. I am sorry you find my revelation about my diet so annoying. Also I don’t follow no big million dollar industries, I am not of a sheep mentality at all.

          1. I don’t find your personal experiences annoying in the slightest. Please do continue to share your progress with your lifestyle. As we seek truth on this site, all viewpoints are welcome, but objective people require evidence. 1 person’s “fabulous results” and “feeling great” is not considered evidence. My patients that were heroin addicts felt that way as soon they injected.

            I also have no doubt that on your program, you can control your blood sugar. You are not the first or last to do this. One recent researcher proved he could lose weight and drop his cholesterol eating nothing but 1800 cal/day of Twinkies.

            My points are this: the vast majority of the population of this planet would find your program so exceedingly restrictive as to be unsustainable for more than a few months. Second, objective research studies (see link below) have shown that people that eat your diet have increased death rate by about 31%. This does NOT mean you are guaranteed to die soon and there is nothing for your doctor to measure. It just means that all available evidence points to the fact that if 10 of your friends did this diet, 3 would die before they need to. If they followed a plant based diet, those 3 would be alive. You must feel lucky and I hope you are. I don’t rely on luck, so I eat plants.

            http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.pone.0055030

            Dr. Ben

            1. Yes Ben,  my diet was very strict but I wanted to get a cure from the disease and I did.  My diet is for those people who start getting a bit afraid because they can see serious negative changes in their body and they have to start thinking about it being time to become more determined and stronger in their eating habits. There is a video on you tube where people go off to an isolated camp with a doctor for thirty days on a restricted vegetarian diet and at the end of the the month they were either normal or just about cured with great improvement and off their medications. But all through the thirty days they hated their diet and were always hungry and miserable and kept counting the days for the end. One man left the place because he couldn’t handle the diet anaymore. One woman was almost leaving but got talked into staying by the other people in the program.
              With my diet I was satisfied and I was just eating once a day with plenty of clean pure water.    I am aware of Dr Gregors research, “according to Dr Michael Gregor research shows that Meat Eater, Vegan and Vegetarian mortality rates are the same. In a lecture on YouTube dating back to 2003, Dr. Michael Greger described how he was surprised by the heart attack and subsequent death of 66 year old Vegan, Jay Dinshah, leader of the American Vegan Society and advocate for life without violence toward animals or humans. Given that the average life expectancy of men in the US is age 77, Gregor became curious and dug into numerous research studies.  A Vegan himself, he was disappointed to learn that Vegans, Vegetarians and Meat Eaters all have the same life expectancy.  Not satisfied with this outcome, Gregor did more research and found that Vegetarians and Vegans could drastically improve their longevity if certain steps were taken in their diet.” 

              Well after reading what he had to say I started taking a tablespoon of flax seeds every day which I grounded up and drank right away with a little Amla powder in it too. This was during my fasting diet and I am still doing it.
              My cholesterol before my diet was 4.5 and was the same after the diet plan. The doctors seem to be happy with that.            My mother in law aged 95 and still going strong and active has fried food all her life, she had cancers removed from her throat, then mouth before she was six years old, had a breast removed when in her thirties ( ended up with a big arm) in her later years she has had five melanomas and recovered from all of them, no radiation, but just having them cut out.  I tried recently to tell her not to fry her food but then thought who am I to tell this old woman how to live and what to eat.

  50. I wonder if increases in diabetes and cancer is actually caused by consuming eggs, or if eggs are simply “found at the seen of the crime.” Can we really know anything unless we know more about the overall diets and environments of those in studies like this?

    1. Dr Ben,

      Thank you for responding. Here is my problem, I’m insulin resistant, any carbs cause a hi spike in glucose. My fasting numbers are between 100 – 110. I just finished looking at the I Thrive documentary in which Dr Gregor was interviewed on diabetes, I’m finally convinced on the plant based diet. He talks about carbs being ok but how do I transition to something like oatmeal for breakfast instead of my egg white omelet?
      Oatmeal causes a hi spike even when followed by an hour of vigorous exercise. I actually don’t eat any meat and haven’t for a long time. My omelet is 2 egg whites with broccoli sprouts and mushrooms or spinach and a little coconut oil in the pan. I add freshly ground flax seed to the finished omelet.
      I know this has been long but I’m so frustrated on who to believe. Dr Mercola and Marlene Merritt are claiming to have scientific studies backing there hi fat theory also. Unfortunately the I thrive documentary featured both sides of the fat and carbs issue.

      1. Don’t believe people; believe clinical research. Read the published studies yourself. I guarantee Mercola and Merritt don’t have any studies refuting the 30% increased death rate on low carb diets based on animal products.
        Keep in mind that animal protein results in insulin secretion, which is cancer promoting. You can’t see that in your blood sugar testing.
        Unfortunately, your insulin resistance is likely due to visceral fat stores. You can check this by calculating your % body fat. Keep in mind that when fat is laid down, visceral fat is laid down first. If you don’t have any significant fat stores, then you could be a LADA patient (Latent Autoimmune Diabetes of Adults). In any case, blood sugar can be controlled low carb or plant based, but plant based eaters live, while animal based eaters increase their risk for sickness and an early death.

        Dr. Ben

        1. Dr.Ben,

          Thank you for taking the time to comment on my issue. I should have mentioned I’m 5″10 and 140 lbs. My main meal at mid day is all plant based. I’d like to transition from my egg white omelet for breakfast to oatmeal but oatmeal creates a hi rise in blood sugar, so do I just accept that rise for now and expect it to improve with time. I walk after each meal. I don’t normally have a third meal so I get a

          1. At your height and weight, it does not sound like you have much, if any, visceral fat, but only an MRI would tell us for sure. I would suggest consulting with a diabetologist who can really figure out the etiology of what’s going on with you. You may not be insulin resistant. You may not be producing enough insulin, or you may be perfectly normal. Have you had your HbA1c checked? If so, what is the result? Also, what do you mean by “hi rise in blood sugar?” What value are you obtaining and how are you testing?

            Dr. Ben

        2. This website is completely emotionally driven by a bunch of low-t (due to vegan diet) sub 150 pound men. Vegan diets can be much better than standard American diets, but completely lack many minerals and vitamins found in meats (or these are just not bioavailable). So if you’re a guy and want to be healthy and feel strong/vigorous I would not recommend this. Ketogenic diet/paleo is definitely the way to go. If you’re worried about over meat consumption then you can fix that with fasting, which was also part of the ancestral diet. You will never see mainstream big data research to demonstrate this because the establishment push right now is to feminize men (so the vegan diet fits perfectly).

          1. The assertions on this website are based on over 4000 unemotional, unbiased, peer-reviewed research studies published in the major medical journals. If you have any unbiased, well founded clinical research to back up your assertions, we’d very much like to see it. Feel free to post PUBMED journal citations.

            And for those that would like to see examples of what a vegan lifestyle can do, a few examples of vegans in phenomenal shape can be seen here:

            http://www.greatveganathletes.com/bodybuilders

            Dr. Ben

            1. I love vegan food especially the cakes and desserts, if I was younger I would seek more education in recipes and open a completely vegan restaurant.  Despite still being a meat eater because I want Vitamin B12,  my diabetes has not returned after doing a serious diet at the end of last year.

              1. We’re very happy to hear that your diabetes has not returned.
                Unfortunately, all available peer-reviewed published evidence is that people that consume animal products die younger and sicker than those eating whole plant foods. Please also keep in mind that animals don’t make B12, they accumulate the B12 that is made by bacteria. Please also note that the clinical research does not support all vegan diets. Veganism can include french fries and oreo cookies which are not part of a healthy lifestyle. Whole Plant Foods are shown to reduce early death and disease.

                Dr. Ben

                1. Hi Ben,    yes there are many unhealthy vegan diets which can be bad for us, the trick is to only eat the bad ones like their cakes on special occasions, I know several vegans who are 7th day adventists and have cancer were overweight and are dying, the research is not really helping them, since they are on the way out now. Also maybe they get these cancers from something not associated with their food for example cleaning products with strong chemicals in or insect sprays.
                  My 93 year old mother in law scares me because she fries bacon and eggs in fat, I told her how bad it was and she said at her age she does not worry, she has a couple of glasses of sherry every evening too and eats a fair amount of chocolate. She is out several times a week with a positive happy attitude about life and I have to wonder if it is her mind that’s keeping her alive.  She has had five melonomas since she was six years old and over come all of them. This has been her lifestyle for years and her many friends the same age had long active lives too. Generally, I ignore all these research programes because I think each of us has a different response, my diet would be good for some and bad for others.  I am old fashioned I trust God!!

  51. I understand that reactive hypoglycemia is a sign of pre-Diabetes. My aunt was just diagnosed with this condition and of course the doctors and nutritionist are telling her to eat eggs, meat and cheese.. aka more protein. While this is helping her symptoms, I know this is going to slowly kill her. I’ve been looking through all the videos to find more on this topic. I’m trying to understand what makes the drop sugar drop so dramatically. Please give more insight on the science behind RH!!

  52. Dear NutritionFacts Team, I have read through the comments below which focus on plant sentience and pasta so I apologise if this has already been asked and answered furher down the thread. I have a number of trained nutritionists in the family and they are all on the ‘keto’ band wagon of a high fat, low carb diet. I am getting no cut through presenting the facts from your site. An example is the contrary egg evidence and link to heart disease and diabetes. For example these studies from the University of Eastern Finland : https://www.uef.fi/en/-/runsaskolesterolisen-ruoan-tai-munien-syonti-ei-lisaa-sydaninfarktin-riskia-edes-perinnollisesti-alttiilla and https://www.uef.fi/en/-/kananmunien-syonti-yhteydessa-pienempaan-tyypin-2-diabeteksen-riskiin
    Can you please help me to understand and provide the necessary explanation for my own edification and that of my parents for example that are now incorporating more and more meat and animal products into their diets?
    Thank you so much for your assistance.

  53. Hi, Seb. Once people commit to a particular ideology, they may be resistant to anything that contradicts it. I don’t know that anything you or I say will convince your “keto” relatives. If you read the first study to which you posted a link, the authors acknowledge several weaknesses in it. I find it interesting that one of the researchers received a grant from a candy company, first of all. Second, the study was small, and included few diabetics. This is significant because diabetes is a risk factor for cardiovascular disease, and egg consumption increases diabetes risk. Third, they only recorded 4 days of food intake at the beginning of the study, which may or may not reflect what people actually ate most of the time for the duration of the study. Most importantly, this type of study is not likely to reveal a relationship between egg intake and cardiovascular disease risk, even it is present.
    In the second study to which you posted a link, the authors state, “A possible explanation is that unlike in many other populations, egg consumption in Finland is not strongly associated with unhealthy lifestyle habits such as smoking, low physical activity or consumption of processed meats.” This is similar to the Chinese study showing benefits for eggs. People eating eggs may be vegetarian, which does provide health benefits compared with eating meat, for example. We do not necessarily know what people who are not eating eggs are eating instead. If it is something worse, that could affect the outcome of the study.
    In multiple studies, people have spent time in facilities in which their dietary intake was controlled, and when saturated fat and cholesterol in the diet were dramatically reduced or eliminated, cardiovascular disease biomarkers also decreased. Likewise, when those dietary factors were increased, CVD biomarkers also increased. You may want to see these videos for more information, if you have not already:
    https://nutritionfacts.org/video/eggs-and-cholesterol-patently-false-and-misleading-claims/
    https://nutritionfacts.org/video/when-low-risk-means-high-risk/

  54. Are they any studies on egg whites alone? Is the culprit the yolk, the combination of the yolk and white, or simply the white?

  55. Hello Dmplaw, and thank you for your question,
    I am a family doctor with a private practice that emphasizes proper nutrition; I’m also a volunteer for this website.

    As you probably know, egg yolks are extremely high in saturated fat, and have been linked to heart attacks and diabetes. Egg whites are a rich source of animal protein. Dr. Greger has done several videos that mention egg whites as one of the animal proteins that lead to:
    1) increased levels of IGF-1 — a potent cancer promoter;
    https://nutritionfacts.org/video/how-not-to-die-from-cancer/
    https://nutritionfacts.org/video/prescription-nutrition-episode-3-spilling-the-beans/
    2) increased levels of cortisol — a “stress hormone”, and decreased levels of testosterone in men.
    https://nutritionfacts.org/video/the-effect-of-animal-protein-on-stress-hormones-testosterone-and-pregnancy/

    However, to answer your question, I am not aware of any studies that look specifically at the health effects of egg whites. In the videos I’ve listed above, Dr. Greger has lots of references. I did not have time to look up each of those references. If you do, that might be a good place to start to try to find studies on egg whites. (Although none of the titles of those papers mentions “egg whites”).

    So, I hope this helps some, even though I didn’t really answer your question.
    Dr. Jon
    PhysicianAssistedWellness.com
    Health Support Volunteer for NutritionFacts.org

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