Beware of skipping out on breakfast. One popular food may help lower your cardiovascular disease risk, according to a new report.
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Researchers from health institutions in China recently conducted a study, published in the Heart journal, to determine how certain foods affect the disease, which can cause heart attacks and strokes.
To do so, they examined more than 500,000 adults in China between 2004 and 2008 and their egg consumption. They then narrowed their search and evaluated participants who had not been diagnosed with cancer, diabetes or heart disease.
About 13 percent of those subjects, who were aged 30 to 79, said they ate about an egg a day, and 9 percent said they never or rarely had an egg. The analysts followed both groups for nearly 10 years, tracking any coronary events, including heart attacks and strokes.
After analyzing the results, they found that eating about five eggs a week reduced ischaemic heart disease risk by 12 percent, and eating an egg daily lowered risk of dying from cardiovascular disease by 18 percent.
Furthermore, they also discovered that those who consumed one egg a day had a 26 percent lower risk of hemorrhagic stroke and a 28 percent reduced chance of dying from one.
Alexis Cutchins, a cardiology expert at Emory University, believes the study provides useful information about the link between eggs and heart disease risk.
“It is nice to see a prospective study performed on a large population of patients that looks at dietary preferences as they relate to risk of future cardiovascular events,” said Cutchins, who was not a part of the study. “Eggs are an excellent source of protein and provide some Omega-3 fatty acids which improve your body’s cholesterol profile and overall heart health.”
The Chinese scientists did note that their study was observational. The information they collected was self-reported through questionnaires, and they did not investigate those who ate more than one egg a day. They also said Chinese dietary habits differ from Western and Japanese, so their results could be interpreted differently.
“While it is useful to see that eating, on average, almost one egg a day helps reduce cardiovascular risk, the study findings cannot be directly adapted to the American population,” Cutchins said. “The AHA recommends an egg a day for cardiovascular health which is supported by the findings from this study based on a Chinese population.”