Earlier this month, we wrote about a new study which found that a compound called carnitine found in red meat impacts certain bacteria in the intestine, which results in the production of a chemical called Trimethylamine N-oxide (TMAO,) linked to clogging of the arteries and heart disease.
Now, according to a new study published in the New England Journal of Medicine found that the compound lecithin, which is found in egg yolks has the same impact on gut bacteria, which produces the chemical call TMAO.
The New York Times reports that in the case of eggs, the chain of events starts when the body digests lecithin, breaking it into its constituent parts, including the chemical choline. Intestinal bacteria metabolize choline and release a substance that the liver converts to a chemical known as TMAO, for trimethylamine N-oxide. High levels of TMAO in the blood are linked to increased risk of heart attack and stroke.
Dr. Stanley Hazen, chairman of the department of cellular and molecular medicine at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner Research Institute said that people who are worried about heart attacks may want to consider reducing lecithin and choline in their diet, which would require eating less of foods high in fat and cholesterol (such as meat and eggs).
As if this new study weren’t enough to make you limit egg your egg consumption, other studies have found that the daily consumption of the amount of cholesterol found in a single egg appeared to cut a woman’s life short as much as smoking 25,000 cigarettes. In addition, just 3 eggs or more a week was associated with a significant increase in artery-clogging plaque buildup, a strong predictor of stroke, heart attack, and death.
Want to try something egg-free for brunch this weekend? Check out these amazing egg-free brunch-ready recipes:
1. Benny & Flo
And here’s a bonus…learn how to bake without eggs with our very Excellent guide to Vegan Egg Replacers