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Whole egg intake increases cholesterol efflux capacity in overweight, postmenopausal women

22 Sep 2019
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Overweight, postmenopausal women who eat two whole eggs per day show a significant increase in cholesterol efflux capacity, according to a study. This increase occurs without changes in apolipoprotein A1 (ApoA1), total cholesterol (TC), low- (LDL) or high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol.

According to the investigators, this supports the idea that “HDL function rather than HDL cholesterol should be addressed in this population.”

This 14-week, single-blind, randomized crossover dietary trial with two 4-week intervention periods sought to characterize the effects of whole eggs vs yolk-free eggs on HDL function and composition in overweight, postmenopausal women and determine how changes in HDL composition are related to HDL functional parameters.

Twenty participants were randomly assigned to one of two crossover treatments: frozen breakfast meal containing 100 g of liquid (2) whole eggs or 100 g of (2) yolk-free eggs per day, separated by a 4-week washout period. Fasting blood sample were obtained at the beginning and end of each treatment period.

The whole-egg treatment group showed an increase in cholesterol efflux capacity (mean percentage change, 5.69±9.9 percent) compared with the yolk-free egg treatment group (–3.69±5.3 percent; p<0.001). However, no other significant changes were seen in HDL functions or antioxidant or inflammatory markers. There was also no change in ApoA1, TC, LDL and HDL cholesterol in response to the egg treatment.

“Postmenopausal women are at higher risk for cardiovascular disease (CVD) than their younger counterparts,” the investigators said. “HDL cholesterol is a biomarker for CVD risk, but the function of HDL may be more important than HDL cholesterol in deciphering disease risk.”

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