Here's yet another example...
Just days before World Diabetes Awareness Day, a new study has been published linking the consumption of eggs to diabetes!
The very first line in the study states "the association between egg consumption and diabetes is inconclusive"! So they set about trying to find an association between eggs and diabetes. They performed this "study" by looking at one to seven 3-day diet diary in Chinese adults only.
The researchers and authors didn't even elaborate on which type of diabetes they were talking about in the study! No mention if it was Type 1, Type 2, Type 3 or others...
Their results found a higher egg consumption was associated with an increased risk of diabetes. Note that NO cause was actually proven! They provided no scientific basis or biochemistry to prove that eggs cause diabetes.
The study found:
• Chinese people are having a higher than global average incidence of diabetes at 10.9% of the population, as compared to 9.3% globally
• The costs of diabetes-related health expenditure in the US alone is $760 billion, and $109 billion in China
• Prevention of diabetes is very important - they got that bit right!
• Eggs provide protein, carotenoids (vitamin A compounds), arginine (an amino acid) and folate. What about all the healthy fats they missed, or the complete amino profile?!
• The authors were concerned about the high amount of cholesterol in eggs, being linked to an increased risk of diabetes by impairing insulin secretion (!). Many other studies show tha cholesterol is not the cause of heart disease or diabetes at all!
• Other studies of egg consumption being linked to diabetes had mixed results - some showing no association, some showing a small association and others were inconclusive
• A higher intake of eggs is accompanied by higher red meat consumption in US studies, which is associated with diabetes (!). No it's not...
• The study found that there was also a higher risk of diabetes due to age, being female, living in an urban area, having a higher income, having a higher weight or obesity, high blood pressure, eating "modern" meals (fast food, milk, egg, and deep fried food). Yet the authors lay the blame entirely on eggs!
• Diabetes was not associated with eating traditional meals (rice, meat and vegetables), smoking, alcohol consumption (!), vegetable consumption, or protein consumption!
• The study looked at other studies of egg consumption with diabetes and found a higher egg intake was associated with a higher intake of modern foods (as opposed to traditional foods), snacks, sweets, desserts, and refined grain products. They said that these high carbohydrate foods can increase the workload on the pancreas and cause insulin resistance (which is diabetes!).
This is a good example of a study going out to hunt for a particular biased conclusion and finding one. In scientific terms this is called a "confirmation bias" - finding an outcome that support one's prior opinions. And also a good example of the same study ignoring other more obvious conclusions or causes, and not actually proving any biochemical causation of eggs causing any health issues. Studies based on food questionnaires or surveys, especially about what one ate years ago, are highly inaccurate and no meaningful scientific outcome should be read from studies like this.
Eggs are a health food! They contain 35% protein and all amino acids, together with 63% healthy fats of a variety of types, and just 2% carbohydrates (Nutrition Data, 2020). Considering that type 2 diabetes is a chronic disease of excess carbohydrate intake, causing insulin resistance, high blood glucose (ie sugar!) levels, and inflammation, eating a food like eggs that is just 2% carbohydrates is NOT going to cause diabetes!
This study ignored all the other high carbohydrate causes of diabetes, and lifestyle factors too, such as stress. Don't blame eggs for what the toast, bread, grains, sugar, juices, sugary drinks, and alcohol (all being high carbohydrate foods) are doing to cause type 2 diabetes!
Don't get your nutrition advice from the media! Speak to a professional who can see through the bias in many studies and other poor nutrition advice. And keep eating eggs!
Nutrition Data. (2020). Egg whole raw fresh; Nutrition facts and calories. Retrieved 16th November 2020 from https://nutritiondata.self.com/.../dairy-and-egg.../111/2
Yue Wang, Ming Li, Zumin Shi. (2020). Higher egg consumption associated with increased risk of diabetes in Chinese adults – China Health and Nutrition Survey. British Journal of Nutrition, 1. DOI: 10.1017/S0007114520003955