Media Release from Eggs Inc., 22 August 2017
Unscrambling Egg Confusion
New Statement Clarifies Eggs Every Day Is Okay
A new statement agreed by the Ministry of Health clears up confusion around one of New
Zealand’s favourite foods. Are eggs good for us and how often can we eat them?
After decades of communicating the need to limit eggs, it has now become evident that eggs
have had a very unfair report card; the Ministry of Health’s latest Eating and Activity
Guidelines1 reflect more recent developments in scientific understanding and the new
statement helps clarify the guidelines when it comes to eggs.
The new statement, agreed by the Ministry of Health, says: Eggs are a healthy, natural whole
food that the New Zealand Ministry of Health Eating and Activity Guidelines state can be
enjoyed by most people every day of the week.
This is great news for egg lovers, as many may have been given incorrect advice in the past
or still be trapped in old-school thinking. For healthy New Zealanders, experts agree that
consuming eggs each day will provide excellent nutritional benefits and won’t increase our risk
of heart disease.
However, Kiwis have yet to catch up to the revised recommendations, and are still confused
about how often they can eat eggs. Recent Colmar Brunton Research found that only 41% of
New Zealanders know that healthy people can eat eggs every day.2
Dr Pamela von Hurst, a member of the Ministry of Health’s Eating and Activity Guidelines
Technical Advisory Group, agrees the new statement will help New Zealanders understand
that most Kiwis can enjoy eggs daily without restriction.
Dr von Hurst, who is a Senior Lecturer in Human Nutrition at Massey University says, “a lot of
people have been concerned about potential health consequences of eggs in the diet.”
“I think it is great that there has now been some clarification about the guidelines around
consumption of eggs because they are such a useful, healthy contribution to the diet,” Dr von
New Zealand nutrition experts are in agreement that eating eggs every day can be a beneficial
part of a healthy balanced diet.
Professor Elaine Rush, scientific advisor for New Zealand Nutrition Foundation and esteemed
Professor of Nutrition at AUT says, “the statement about being able to eat eggs every day for
most people is a very sensible one.”
Through recent studies on eggs we know more about the health benefits and nutritional value
of eggs than ever before. Recent studies conducted in healthy people show no effect of daily
egg intake on blood cholesterol levels3,4,5 and the latest scientific evidence shows no
association between increased intake of dietary cholesterol and increased risk of heart
disease or stroke.6
The agreed statement also follows the recent update to the Heart Foundation’s advice. Their
recommendation is now that those at risk of heart disease can eat 6 to 7 eggs a week.7
“The amount of evidence we have, particularly high-quality evidence about cholesterol, eggs
and risk for disease, has now accumulated so we are able to analyse many studies and draw
the conclusion that for most people eggs have no risk at all,” Professor Rush says.
“Eating eggs does not cause or increase risk of heart disease for most people, and are actually
a very sensible food to eat,” she adds.
Eggs are good for our health in so many different ways and they are an excellent source of
very affordable nutrition.
Claire Turnbull, NZ Registered Nutritionist, regularly recommends eggs as part of a healthy
“Both the egg white and the yolk have different nutritional benefits so for maximum goodness,
it is really good to eat both – they have lots of protein in them as well as 11 different vitamins
and minerals including iron, B vitamins as well as the fat-soluble vitamins A and E,” Turnbull
says. “For the average healthy Kiwi, it’s absolutely fine to be eating eggs every day”.
Head of Performance Nutrition at High Performance Sport NZ and NZ Registered Dietitian
Jeni Pearce also encourages people to eat eggs, and says most of the athletes she works
with would have them every day in some form.
“The unique thing about an egg is that it is a complete source of the highest quality protein,
while not being a high calorie food, so it’s very easy to add an egg to the diet for great nutrition,”
“Many athletes don’t get enough protein at breakfast and eggs are a great way to increase
Pearce concurs with New Zealand’s nutrition experts that the new statement agreed by the
Ministry of Health will be helpful for Kiwis who can now be assured it is okay for most people
to eat eggs every day.
To learn more visit www.eggseveryday.org.nz
New Zealand Ministry of Health Eating and Activity Guidelines:
1. Ministry of Health. 2015. Eating and Activity Guidelines for New Zealand Adults. Wellington: Ministry of
2. Colmar and Brunton National Omnibus, March 2017.
3. Katz, D.L., et al., Egg consumption and endothelial function: a randomized controlled crossover trial. Int J
Cardiol, 2005. 99(1): p. 65-70.
4. Rueda, J.M. and P. Khosla, Impact of breakfasts (with or without eggs) on body weight regulation and
blood lipids in university students over a 14-week semester. Nutrients, 2013. 5(12): p. 5097-113
5. Clayton, Z.S., et al., Influence of Resistance Training Combined with Daily Consumption of an Egg-based
or Bagel-based Breakfast on Risk Factors for Chronic Diseases in Healthy Untrained Individuals. Journal
of the American College of Nutrition, 2015. 34(2): p. 113-9.
6. Berger, S., et al., Dietary cholesterol and cardiovascular disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis.
The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2015. 102(2): p. 276-94.
7. Heart Foundation. 2016. Evidence Paper: Eggs and the Heart. Auckland, New Zealand: Heart Foundation.