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Myths

Cholesterol

Until recently, it was thought that cholesterol in food was an important factor in high blood cholesterol. We now know that dietary cholesterol alone is not significant for most people. Recent research has clearly identified saturated fat as the main influence on blood cholesterol. While all types of fat, as well as lack of exercise affect your general health, reducing salt intake and losing excess weight will help to lower blood pressure.

Dietary cholesterol, once thought to be a major cause of high blood cholesterol, is now known to be a less important issue. Research showed that adding two eggs a day to the diet of people with normal cholesterol levels produced no rise in the level of LDL (or bad) cholesterol. Even at three eggs a day, the effect on blood cholesterol was equivalent to eating 10g of butter or 30g of cheese.*

So, if saturated fat and not cholesterol is the most important dietary contributor to heart disease should you be rediscovering the benefits of having eggs in your diet?

For more helpful information on egg nutrition, visit the Australian Egg Corporation’s website at www.eggs.org.au or for more detailed information about eggs, nutrition and food safety visit www.enc.org.au

*A group of men and women were given various diets to determine the effect of the diets on blood cholesterol levels. Clifton P.M, Nestel P.J. Influence of Gender, Body Mass Index and Age in response of Plasma Lipids to Dietary Fat plus Cholesterol. Arteriosclerosis & Thrombosis: 12: 955-962.

Avian Influenza

There has been a great deal of media discussion about the spread of Avian Influenza throughout Asia and Europe over the past few years.

Avian Influenza is a viral infection that can affect all species of birds and one variety can infect mammals including humans, however this is less common.

Here are some facts about Avian Influenza (AI) and eggs in Australia.*

The current situation

  • Australia is currently free of AI that can transfer to humans and there is no AI infection in any commercial egg laying flocks.
  • Australia is a world leader in biological security and has comprehensive programs and procedures in place for the detection and eradication of diseases such as AI.
  • All eggs in Australia are produced under strict quality and safety regulations and guidelines. Both industry and government are in regular contact with egg producers to ensure compliance with quality and safety standards.
  • Australia currently exports eggs to Asian countries, because of our stringent food safety and quality assurance programs.

Food Safety Facts

  • There have not been any known cases anywhere in the world where humans have contracted AI from eating eggs.
  • Australia does not import shell eggs for consumption. All imported and domestic value added egg products must be pasteurised, which destroys any influenza disease.

* A special thank you to the Australian Egg Corporation Limited.