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MEDIA RELEASE Tuesday 22 February 2011

Groundbreaking Australian research shows eating eggs can benefit people with type 2 diabetes Exciting new Australian scientific research highlights the nutritional benefits for people with type 2 diabetes if they include eggs in their diet as part of a healthy weight-loss eating plan. The new research, published in the February edition of the British Journal of Nutrition, has revealed eggs are not only a great source of protein for people with type 2 diabetes but that a high protein diet which includes nutrient-dense eggs can actually deliver significant health benefits. The research found that two eggs per day did not adversely affect the cholesterol levels in people with type 2 diabetes but in fact improved levels of HDL-C (‘good cholesterol’) in those people in the egg protein arm of the study. One group included two eggs a day as a protein source in their diet and the other consumed meat, chicken or fish as their lunch source of protein. Researchers then compared cholesterol levels, cardiovascular risk factors and glucose control between the two groups. According to co-researcher Dr Manny Noakes from the CSIRO’s Food and Nutritional Sciences and co-author of the CSIRO’s best-selling Total Wellbeing Diet, prior to this study little research had been done on dietary cholesterol and diabetes management. “This research has shown no detrimental effects from including eggs as a significant source of protein in the diet of people with type 2 diabetes and in fact it demonstrated some very positive effects,” Dr Noakes said. The participants eating eggs showed minimal changes to LDL-C (‘bad cholesterol’) and increased levels of important vitamins, including folate and lutein, in their blood when compared to the control group. Blood pressure – another risk factor for heart disease – was also reduced in both groups. Around 80 per cent of people with type 2 diabetes are overweight or obese and therefore longterm weight management is critical in order to reduce complications from the condition. Dr Noakes believes the study’s findings means that eggs as a part of a healthy diet should be more highly valued – not just for people with type 2 diabetes.

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“Eggs are an inexpensive source of protein which could help contribute to higher protein diets but there have been concerns in the past about excessive dietary cholesterol intake by people at risk of cardiovascular disease,” Dr Noakes said. “We believe that this research demonstrates that a high-protein, energy-restricted diet that includes eggs regularly may have nutritional benefits and help in metabolic control in people with type 2 diabetes.” Eggs are a nutrient rich, high quality source of protein. Their portion size is easy to control, they are relatively easy to digest and they are inexpensive. Eggs provide nutritional benefits across all age groups, from young children through to older Australians. ENDS About the study 

The British Journal of Nutrition article is titled ‘Egg Consumption as part of an energy-restricted high-protein diet improves blood lipid and blood glucose profiles in individuals with type 2 diabetes’.

Sixty people, both men and women aged between 20 and 75 years of age with type 2 diabetes, completed the study and the participants achieved significant weight loss of an average 6.2 per cent of their body weight (6kg) with no major differences between the two groups.

For experimental reasons, the researchers opted to exaggerate egg consumption to 14 eggs a week, or two a day, which is well in excess of the Heart Foundation recommendation of six eggs a week, in order to effectively test the impact of egg consumption in people with type 2 diabetes.

The research was undertaken by Doctors Manny Noakes, Peter Clifton and Karma Pearce, researchers at the CSIRO’s Food and Nutritional Sciences, Adelaide University and the University of South Australia

Dr Manny Noakes is a current advisor to the Egg Nutrition Council. This research was co-funded by the Australian Egg Nutrition Council and CSIRO to explore the dietary implications of eating eggs for people with type 2 diabetes.

To interview Dr Manny Noakes, further information or images contact: Lisa Brown or Kirilly Smith Porter Novelli On behalf of AECL 02 8987 2100 or 0419 978 877 lbrown@porternovelli.com.au ksmith@porternovelli.com.au Page 2 of 2


Media Release on new egg research and Type 2 diabetes