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Adv Nutr. 2012 Sep 1;3(5):711-7. doi: 10.3945/an.111.001321.

Exploring the factors that affect blood cholesterol and heart disease risk: is dietary cholesterol as bad for you as history leads us to believe?

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Egg Nutrition Center, Park Ridge, IL, USA.


This paper summarizes presentations given at the 2011 Experimental Biology meetings about the latest research and a paleoanthropological perspective pertaining to the relationship between dietary cholesterol intake and cardiovascular disease risk. For much of the past 50 years, a great deal of the scientific literature regarding dietary fat and cholesterol intake has indicated a strong positive correlation with heart disease. In recent years, however, there have been a number of epidemiological studies that did not support a relationship between cholesterol intake and cardiovascular disease. Further, a number of recent clinical trials that looked at the effects of long-term egg consumption (as a vehicle for dietary cholesterol) reported no negative impact on various indices of cardiovascular health and disease. Coupled with data indicating that the impact of lowering dietary cholesterol intake on serum LDL levels is small compared with other dietary and lifestyle factors, there is a need to consider how otherwise healthy foods can be incorporated in the diet to meet current dietary cholesterol recommendations. Because eggs are a healthful food, it is particularly important that sensible strategies be recommended for inclusions of eggs in a healthy diet.

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