Raised LDL and total cholesterol...could it be eggs?

I have posted on Tu about my new found love of eggs…for years I didn’t eat them and within the past few months I have been eating them daily…usually 2 per day. My understanding was the the eggs should not really have an impact on cholesterol, so I have been going crazy with them.

I just got some cholesterol results back, and my ones prior were last done in August. I had a huge jump in my levels. While trigylercides and HDL were basically the same as before, my LDL jumped from 95 to 131 and my Total jumped from 160 to 198! These are big jumps. I have been wracking my brain to see what may have caused this and then I realized that since that time I have started eating way more eggs. Could they really cause a jump this extreme? I would be sad to have to give them up…they are great for managing my blood sugar.

I think the latest research seems to argue against dietary cholesterol being a factor in blood cholesterol. Here’s a link to a page espousing that opinion. Also some say LDL cholesterol by itself is a poor predictor of heart problems.

Here’s a quote from that page

"In a recent review,1 cholesterol researcher Dr. Maria Luz Fernandez of the University of Connecticut’s Department of Nutritional Sciences summarized the results of a number of studies testing the effects of egg consumption on blood cholesterol levels. In children aged 10-12, in men aged 20-50, in premenopausal and postmenopausal women, in whites and hispanics, the same basic finding persists: two or three eggs per day has little or no effect on the blood cholesterol levels of over two thirds of the population.

Less than a third of the population, by contrast, are termed “hyperresponders.” When these people eat egg yolks, their cholesterol levels do go up. LDL, the so-called “bad cholesterol,” and HDL, the so-called “good cholesterol” both go up equally, so there is no change in the ratio of LDL to HDL, or of LDL to total cholesterol, both of which are considered better measures of the risk of heart disease than the total concentration of cholesterol."

In the end, since we are all different, all you could do is stop eating eggs and see if your results change. I agree eggs seem to be the ideal diabetic food and I would hate to have to give them up. As to the question of whether cutting LDL is useful there are lot’s of opinions. Unfortunately, some opinions may be colored by the fact that statins are a multi billion $ industry.

Well, I love eggs. I have been hounded for years by the medical establishment with claims that dietary fats cause high cholesterol and that is going to surely kill me. Unfortunately, when I looked at the studies behind these claims, they lack substance. I consider eggs a “free food.” They are better than almost anything in my diet, and they are clearly better than “heart healthy” Cheerios. I’ll continue to eat lots of eggs, I prefer organic free range eggs.

When my cholesterol was high my doctor wanted me to try lowering my intake of foods like butter and eggs for awhile before prescribing statins. I knew it was genetic but I tried, switching to cereal and eating diet margarine. It made no difference and my cholesterol even went up (menopausal). I was put on statins and my cholesterol is good now despite eating 2 eggs a day and going back to butter (though since I don’t eat toast anymore I don’t eat much). After I lost weight at diagnosis my high blood pressure went away and I got off blood pressure meds. Perhaps I no longer need statins either, but I’d rather not mess around due to family history. And I’m happy to be able to eat eggs because it’s the only breakfast food that doesn’t spike my blood sugar.

That’s a 20-25% change. I would also suspect the lab, ask them what their ranges and tolerances are. Wait 2 weeks and get the test again.
Has your exercise changed?
Did the eggs replace anything? You may be eating less Vit B (or other).

I used to always eat 1 slice of whole wheat bread with 1 tbsp of natural peanut butter.
I may be less active since it has been winter and l live in a cold climate.
I agree that eggs are the perfect diabetic food.

Maybe I am one of those hyper responders. I guess I should try cutting back for a few months and then getting tested again.

Just an idea- you could try just eating the whites if you hard boil them. From what I understand, the vast majority of the cholesterol is in the yolk, while a large amount of the actualy nutrition is in the whites (being what is feeding the unfertilized yolk). Someone correct me if I’m way off.

I eat Eggbeaters. I agree regular eggs are better but my cholesterol levels seemed to be decent the last time I checked so I figured I don’t want to mess with it.

Well, most of the protein is in the white, but most of the nutrients are actually in the yolk. Despite the claims, dietary cholesterol is not directly related to blood cholesterol (lipids). It turns out that in order to digest fats, you release bile which breaks the fats into smaller chains which are then absorbed. You don’t digest dietary cholesterol whole. Even if all the dietary cholesterol dumped directly into your blood stream, it would still be a very small fraction of the total cholesterol. It turns out that your body actually makes basically all that cholesterol and that (oops) carbohydrates are the major dietary source that drives your body’s production of cholesterol.

If you want to cut your cholesterol levels, cut your carb intake.

WHile I do want to cut my cholesterol levels, I also want to identify what caused the jump.My levels were fine before, and now are a bit too high. I have thought that eggs were fine, but am now wondering if I have been over-doing it.? I can’t think of anything else that has changed. I am thinking I may back off on them for awhile and get retested? And then go back on them and get re-tested again?

I went back to my spouted grain bread and peanut butter this AM (10 carbs) and was hungry much early than I have been with my beloved eggs.

Maybe it is what they eggs have been cooked in? I have been doing hard boiled at home, but at work sometimes I get over-medium…perhaps they are cooked in butter which is causing my cholesterol to climb? I normally don’t really eat butter at all.

I came across a recent paper related to eggs that surprised me so I figured I’de pass it on. The paper concludes that eating one or more eggs a day is fine for most adults, with the exception of those with Diabetes. “Consumption of one or more eggs per day is associated with an elevated risk of coronary heart disease in people with diabetes.” LINK HERE I assume this is for T2 diabetes, although it doesn’t say in the abstract. I eat a few eggs a week and don’t plan to change unless I see a change in my lipid numbers. YMMV.