Eating just one egg every day can substantially raise the risk of developing diabetes, according to researchers.
For those who already have type 2 diabetes – also known as adult onset diabetes – eating more than a couple of eggs a week can make the condition worse.
American scientists reached the conclusions after tracking almost 57,000 men and women over a period of up to 20 years.
They found that eating an egg every day increased the overall risk of type 2 diabetes by about 60 per cent. For women the risk increased by 77 per cent.
Eating just one egg a week carried no increased risk, said the report in the online journal Diabetes Care.
Doctors are now urging patients with type 2 diabetes or those at risk of the condition to limit their egg consumption to three a week.
If people want to include eggs in their diet, they suggest that eggs high in omega 3 fats are a better choice.
The researchers, from Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, recommend further studies into the health risks of eating more than one egg every day.
Eggs, although a good source of vitamins, proteins and other nutrients, contain high levels of cholesterol and saturated fats, which are known to increase the risk of type 2 diabetes.
Type 2 diabetes develops when the body can still make some insulin, but not enough, or when the insulin that is produced does not work properly. In most cases this is linked with being overweight and usually appears in over-40s.
On-line Diabetes Care, Nov 2008