Are Scrambled Eggs Bad For You?

Last week our new Assistant Trainer, Paul Taranto, scared the life out of all of Terrific Fitness with his statement about eating scrambled eggs is bad for you. As promised, I followed this up.  Here is my response to the “Egg Saga” from last week:

Having searched high and low through all my documents, contacts and research the only place I have found any substantial evidence is on Dr. Mercola’s website. Other than him, nobody else says much (oh except the idiots that tell us eggs are bad for us because they cause heart disease. But they don’t count cos we now know that is in fact rubbish!) I have complete faith in Dr Mercola however, as he has NEVER steered us wrong in the past.

So here is my summary. After all my reading and research, and talking to Paul Taranto (Nutritionist), it appears that eggs do in fact have a scaling level of goodness depending on the way they are in fact prepared.  For complete details please click on the provided links down the bottom and have a read through. I am not writing a detailed  article on this at the moment due to time constraints; I am merely offering you a summary of what I found. If you want the nitty gritty read the articles.

Summary:

  • The best way to eat eggs is raw (especially if the eggs are pastured and organic.) Refer article http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2005/02/09/raw-eggs.aspx for information on the dangers or LACK of danger of Salmonella poisoning
  • The next best thing is to soft boil or poach your eggs where you cook the white, but leave the yolk soft (uncooked)
  • If you cook your eggs on a super low flame is reduces the chances of the yolk becoming rancid through oxidization (similar to when you heat olive oil). Oxidized egg yolks increase the VLDL (very low density lipoproteins in cholesterol, which are the bad guys)
  • Frying your eggs so that they are sunny side up is also a good option
  • Cooking with them in a quiche or slice in a low temperature is also fine as the yolk will be less likely to be in direct contact with the heat (due to the other ingredients) and therefore reduce oxidization.
  • Cooking them in an omelet or scrambling them , is in fact the worst option due to the oxidization that occurs in the egg yolk increasing the VLDL. This is because the yolk is whipped (gets oxidized) then has direct contact with heat (further oxidized). HOWEVER the oxidization occurs more the longer the eggs are left without being eaten. So if you eat them straight away, it will have minimal effects.

In Terrific Fitness, we talk about your best option, versus an ok option, versus the worst option. So let’s take a look at that with these facts I have just summarized.

The order of the best way to prepare your  eggs is as follows:

NB: Pastured and organic is best, next is organic, next is free range, and finally caged or commercially farmed eggs.

  1. Your best option is to eat pastured and organic eggs, raw.
  2. Next best is soft boiled or poached with runny yolk.
  3. Frying your eggs in butter or coconut oil with sunny side up, soft yolk.
  4. Cooking with the egg with the yolk in tact
  5. Cooking with the egg with a broken yolk
  6. And last on the list is scrambled or omelet.

An option that Dr. Mercola proposes is to eat your whites cooked (scrambled) and your yolks raw.

Now, this is probably the MOST IMPORTANT part of this entire article. If you are tossing up scrambled eggs versus cereal/muesli/toast for breakfast, the scrambled eggs win hands down!!! Though they are not the best quality of the egg that you can consume, the alternative is far worse! The Cereal/muesli/toast will increase your VLDL far more than a couple of scrambled eggs! Especially if everything else that you consume is spot on, health wise! If the worse thing in your diet is a couple of scrambled eggs, and you exercise regularly, then then scrambled eggs is no reason to lose any sleep. If however you are consuming donuts, bread, pasta, pizza, and a heap of other processed food, you smoke, drink alcohol regularly or take any hard prescription or recreational drugs, then the eating the eggs scrambled is simply going to add to your VLDL cholesterol. Here I would tell you to correct everything else, before you started stressing about the eggs!

So all in all, no, eggs are not bad for you, no matter how you consume them; there are however better ways to prepare them for optimum health.

NB: If you have been diagnosed with High Cholesterol due to high Triglycerides or LDL, then I recommend staying away from scrambled eggs just to be on the safe side.

Refer Dr. Mercola’s articles on eggs, below. I don’t have any others for you, as I couldn’t find anywhere else that spoke about the dangers of cooking the egg yolks. I hope this helps to answer your questions (it helped answer mine)…

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2005/02/09/raw-eggs.aspx

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2002/11/13/eggs-part-two.aspx

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2005/04/13/egg-myths.aspx

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2010/08/10/making-sense-of-your-cholesterol-numbers.aspx

http://articles.mercola.com/sites/articles/archive/2007/11/08/what-are-the-best-type-of-eggs-to-get.aspx