Headlines that Set Consumers’ Heads Spinning


This week, the internet was abuzz with news that eating egg yolks is as harmful to your health as smoking.

The study, published by a team in Ontario that includes esteemed nutrition researcher David Jenkins, found that egg yolks and smoking both led to a statistically significant increase in plaque build-up in the in the blood vessels.

This comes in stark contrast to the prevailing thought that dietary cholesterol doesn’t actually contribute to blood cholesterol as much as saturated fat intake.
Expect those eggs to sit on the shelf a little longer this week.

As a dietitian, these are the instances that my job gets a little tougher.

For a certain generation, I have been spending my career reassuring them that eggs are not evil heart disease machines as we had been lead to believe in the ’80s.

I still stand by that statement, in fact offering a response in a Global News article to that end.

When we read headlines like this, we have to take them with a grain of salt – it is common sense that eating a veggie omelet is not the same kind of health insult as having a cigarette.

However, in an already confusing food environment, this kind of news doesn’t tend to sit well with consumers.

Here is the trouble with science when it comes to making actual food choices: science relies on building consensus over years as multiple studies confirm the same findings.

This is much more challenging than it sounds.

With researchers all over the world conducting studies on various topics, multiple methodologies and voices contradict each other with regularity.

This is why one week, you can read an article that says red wine is good for your heart and the next week, that it isn’t.

This makes for good science, not clear nutrition guidance.

It will be impossible to say how much traction this story will have – next week, it might be old news.

Did I tell you about the study that says choline, a compound found in eggs, may help protect babies from the effects of stress in pregnancy?

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