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The intersection of science, media and populism can be bad news

Witness this:

The kind of cholesterol found in eggs doesn't affect the cholesterol in your blood, so go ahead and enjoy eggs for breakfast, lunch, or dinner, guilt-free. In healthy people, "the research with eggs has never shown any link of egg consumption with blood lipids or with risk of heart disease," says Don Layman, professor emeritus in the Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

The confusion can be boiled down to semantics: The same word, "cholesterol," is used to describe two different things. Dietary cholesterol the fat-like molecules in animal-based foods like eggs doesn't greatly affect the amount of cholesterol circulating in your bloodstream. Your body makes its own cholesterol, so it doesn't need much of the kind you eat. Instead, what fuels your body's cholesterol-making machine is certain saturated and trans fats. Eggs contain relatively small amounts of saturated fat. One large egg contains about 1.5 grams saturated fat, a fraction of the amount in the tablespoon of butter many cooks use to cook that egg in. So, cutting eggs out of your diet is a bad idea; they're a rich source of 13 vitamins and minerals.


If you remember the 1990s, there was a big panic on to avoid eggs. This was before the Atkins diet had us avoiding carbohydrates, and the late-1990s fad diets had us avoiding all meat except carefully boiled (uck) lean chicken or fish.

Science isn't a think. Science is people working together to make best guesstimates. Making it a religion can be problematic, but making religions is what mainstream media does best.