Dr. Nagourney's Blog

Do Doctors Have Egg on Their Faces?

By Robert A. Nagourney, MD

Few of us have escaped the medical community's admonition that eggs are a hazard to our health. Based on the cholesterol found in egg yolks, internists, cardiologists, epidemiologists and nutritionists urged Americans to limit their intake.

An entire industry grew up to provide people with “safe eggs”. Egg white omelets, egg beaters and “heart-healthy” alternatives flourished as people interested in protecting their coronary arteries were instructed to abandon eggs.  

The Truth Coming Out About Egg Consumption

Now, a large study in the European Journal of Nutrition, has found that egg consumption has no impact upon cardiovascular disease, mortality or the development of type 2 diabetes. There was no association between egg intake and stroke, heart failure or myocardial infarction (heart attack). For individuals with pre-existing Type 2 diabetes there was however a small increase in the risk of stroke.

Combining two large studies, the Caerphilly Prospective Cohort Study (CAPS) with 2512 men ages 45 to 59 and the National Diet and Nutritional Survey (NDNS) with 754 men ages 19 to 64 the analysis followed subjects for up to 22.8 years. The result; eggs are a perfectly safe and healthy form of food.

Who knew?

How are we to interpret these results?

A Common Scientific Error

For one, it seems that the scientists were guilty of an all- too-common error as they confused correlation with causation and concocted a plausible yet flawed premise that the cholesterol-rich-plaques found in coronary arteries were caused by egg intake. Eggs were a convenient “whipping boy” and it was so easy to attribute health problems to eggs that no one bothered to question whether it was true.

Where else might entrenched beliefs replace scientific data, to the detriment of the general public?

Like Eggs, the Genomic Basis of Cancer is Another Example

The genomic basis of cancer is a prime example.

We know that cancer cells carry mutations and we know that cancer cells use DNA. Cancer cells, DNA…. voila we have the answer.  Cancer is a genetic disease.

But no-one has taken the time to prove this hypothesis.

In our study of human tumor biology, DNA mutations appear to be the “whipping boy” of cancer.

There is More to the Cancer Puzzle than just DNA

Stepping over and around genomic analyses we find that cancer is actually an altered cellular system and that DNA is only a small part of the puzzle. Yet a generation of cancer scientists have become so absorbed in their own dogma that they cannot (or will not) hear the news; that cancer is a cellular process that must be studied at the cellular level if we are ever to have any hope of unraveling its many mysteries.

If after decades of non-stop chatter that eggs are the culprit in heart disease (proven untrue) and if fat intake is now replacing carbohydrate intake as the preferred source of calories (heaven forbid), are there other long held beliefs in the medical community, such as those surrounding the use of human tissue to select active cancer therapies, that bare careful re-examination?

We think so.

As always, I appreciate your thoughts and comments.

 

Dr. Robert Nagourney, has been internationally recognized as a pioneer in cancer research and personalized cancer treatment for over 20 years.  He is a TEDX SPEAKER, author of the book OUTLIVING CANCER, a practicing oncologist and triple board certified in Internal Medicine, Medical Oncology and Hematology helping cancer patients from around the world at his Nagourney Cancer Institute in Long Beach, California.  For more info go to NAGOURNEYCANCERINSTITUTE.COM