Egg Resources for Health Professionals

ENC serves as a resource for health professionals in need of current nutrition information to share with their patients.

Below are various tools available for professional education and/or to be shared with consumers.

for-your-patients-clients continuing-education nutrition-close-up-newsletter recipes

Filter By Topic

American Dietetic Association’s Food Nutrition and Exhibition Conference 2011

Marcia and I hold this conference and exhibit close to our hearts since the health professionals we educate are also our peers. Once again our booth and materials were well received. The attendees also already actively use our website for our materials. This show we also tried something new. We had a video set up in our booth showing our research videos, egg production video and our recent webinar. This gave the booth an even more “techy” look as well as highlighting some of the great work we do. Over 350 attendees completed the survey and signed up for our newsletter. Many attendees asked about our research including cholesterol and choline. We also reviewed other research projects that we were working on. Overall, I think it was a successful conference.

 

Prostate Cancer Research: Unscrambling the Science

The journal Cancer Prevention Research recently published a study online ahead of print examining the link between dietary factors and risk of fatal prostate cancer. Among other things, the researchers concluded that consumption of eggs may increase the risk of fatal prostate cancer. Given the large body of research supporting the health and nutritional benefits of egg consumption, this finding is unexpected. However, statistical associations do not prove cause and effect. Rather, they show relationships and are best used in guiding the direction of future research. In this study, it is important to note that researchers only looked at a specific population – predominantly Caucasian, adult men – and that there were few cases of lethal prostate cancer overall. This finding in and of itself calls into question the rather bold claims made in the press regarding the study results.

Additionally, certain dietary factors were not taken into account, such as foods commonly eaten with eggs like bacon, sausage, fried potatoes, cheese and various refined carbohydrates. According to the recently released 2010 Dietary Guidelines, eating an egg a day is safe and healthy for most individuals. Nevertheless, it is important to pair eggs with other good-for-you foods, such as fruits, vegetables, low-fat dairy and whole grains as part of a balanced diet.

If you are interested in further information about the study, here are some of the specifics:
• Study participants included 27,607 male health professionals from the Health Professional Follow-up Study (HPFS) followed from 1994 to 2008. Typical dietary intake was measured using a semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire to determine how often each participant consumed red meat (processed and unprocessed), poultry and eggs (with yolk).
• The outcome studied was fatal prostate cancer, which included death from prostate cancer or organ metastases.
• A total of 199 events of lethal prostate cancer were observed among the 27,607 men over the follow-up period. In other words, only 0.7% of subjects developed lethal prostate cancer.
• The researchers concluded that men who consumed 2.5 or more eggs per week had an 81% increased risk of lethal prostate cancer compared to men who consumed less than half an egg per week.
• The study did not find a significant association between egg intake and progression of prostate cancer after diagnosis.
• Researchers adjusted for age, body mass index (BMI), smoking and physical activity. No adjustments for other dietary factors were made.

Choose MyPlate

What constitutes a healthy diet has been up for debate probably since the Stone age. The US government began to advise us about what makes a healthy diet prior to World War II when our nation needed to ration food and the need for a healthy armed services became a concern. Since then, dietary guidance has been provided as a joint effort by the US Health and Human Services and Agriculture departments every 5 years based on the most current recommendations from a panel of nutrition experts and known as the US Dietary Guidelines.

Communicating the US Dietary Guidelines has been just as difficult as establishing the criteria for a healthy diet. When the 2010 US Dietary Guidelines were released, the USDA Center for Nutrition Policy and Promotion was tasked with making the dietary guidance document applicable for public usage. The expectation for the communication program was that not only should the latest dietary guidance be understood by everyone in the country but also followed.

Prior to June 2011, the Food Guide Pyramid was an attempt to put dietary planning into a context of meeting daily nutritional goals. One basic weakness of this tool for communicating a healthy diet was that most consumers plan their meals not diets, so it was hard to adapt the messages into daily life. Since June 2011, the release of the ChooseMyPlate.gov program suggests that a healthy meal involves eating a balanced intake of foods from each of the 5 food groups; fruits, vegetables, grains, protein and dairy. A plan to extend the reach of the ChooseMyPlate.gov program was developed by USDA to invite partners from the community which will use the MyPlate icon and 7 accompanying messages (*see below). It is hoped that a high visibility of the MyPlate icon will serve as a reminder, endorsed by all members of the local community including its business members, to eat a healthy meal and include exercise daily. If we all become familiar with the concepts represented by the MyPlate icon, it will serve to show our support for improving the health of our nation and will help build our national, community and individual pride at a time when it is so sorely needed.

The Egg Nutrition Center is a Strategic Partner of the ChooseMyPlate.gov program and collaborates with other partners to incorporate the MyPlate messages into educational tools which are shared with health professionals and their patients or clients around the nation.

*● Enjoy your food, but eat less. ● Avoid oversized portions. ● Make half your plate fruits and vegetables. ● Make at least half your grains whole grains. ● Switch to fat-free or low-fat (1%) milk. ● Compare sodium in foods like soup, bread, and frozen meals ― and choose the foods with lower numbers. ● Drink water instead of sugary drinks.

The Global Obesity Pandemic: Shaped by Global Drivers and Local Environments

Below are highlights from the article.  We as health professionals already know many of these. I think the approach of looking at obesity in the large picture rather than pieces is long overdue. There have been many “smaller scale strategies” and some of those have been successful in targeted areas.  I think the approach of looking at obesity in the large picture rather than pieces is long overdue.  What does this really mean though?

We’ve all seen the numbers and generally are aware of the history of obesity.  Obesity began in most high income countries in the 1970-80’s, but now most middle and low income countries also have obesity.  Three years ago, in 2008, it was estimated that 1.46 million adults globally were overweight and 502 million were obese.  Children were estimated at 170 million as overweight or obese.  Other trends within obesity are prevalent as well, but these numbers tell the story.

A Hoad, Somerford and Katzenellenbogen article (Aust NZ J Public Health) drives home that obesity has overtaken tobacco as the largest preventable cause of disease burden in some regions.

What are some key indicators in this report?

  • Economic Effects
    • Sufficient wealth-this has been an enabler for obesity.  This however, is not always indicative as shown in the Pacific Island nations and others.
    • Some countries are faced with a substantial burden of undernutrition also has an emerging burden of overnurition and related diseases to both forms of malnutrition.
    • Obesity is the result of people responding to the obesogenic environment and the obesogenic environments arise because governments and business are responding the economic and politic environments.
    • Drivers of the obesity epidemic
      • Several studies have shown that technological changes have created cheaper and more available food calories and have driven forces towards overconsumption.
      • The “built environment” Changes in our overall habits- less physical activity (driving instead of walking) as well as increased of the food supply starting in the 70’s.  Interestingly enough if everyone was following the fruit and vegetable recommendations of the dietary guidelines, there would not be enough fruits and vegetables for everyone.  What does this say about the oversupply of food? 
      • Cultural preferences such as (body size) can have a significant effect in different regions. 
      • Marketing-On the marketing question-Is the market failing children”?  You decide
      • Genetics- an article by Bray GA states genetics loads the guns but the environment pulls the trigger.
      • Approaches and implications to address obesity
        • The figure below shows a framework to categorize determinants and solutions of obesity.
        • Sustainability and affordability remain to challenges for programs.
        • The major strategies available to directly affect behaviors aim to increase motivation to make healthy choices and include social marketing health education and promotion programs.
        • Realistically policy interventions can be directed at the environment (rather than the individual).
        • The article suggests the solution to obesity should be developed on a global level.

 

Stay tuned for reviews of the next articles in the series.

IDEA World of Fitness Conference

health fitness

Last week I had the opportunity to exhibit for the Egg Nutrition Center at the IDEA World of Fitness conference. This is the first foray the Egg Nutrition Center has made into communicating with the fitness and personal trainer profession. We recognize that with increased awareness of the importance of exercise for improved health, weight control and strength in aging, the personal trainer community has often been asked to be a resource about good nutrition. We learned earlier this year from a focus group that we conducted with personal trainers, that the personal trainer scope of practice does not include nutrition counseling although they share a strong interest in nutrition as it relates to health and body composition. However, since the exercise and fitness profession is seen by many as a good role model of healthy living, we felt it was important to reach out to this professional group with accurate information about eggs and overall nutrition.

Our observations from our focus group with personal trainers were reinforced at the IDEA World of Fitness Conference exhibit when many attendees stopped by showing interest in learning more about eggs and the many nutritional benefits of egg intake. The people I met were genuinely enthusiastic about eating eggs and were pleased to learn that including an egg yolk in their multiple egg white meal would offer so many vitamin and mineral benefits. We talked about the additional benefits of satiety to keep from hunger during long practices and the role of amino acid leucine that signals muscle synthesis making eggs a good protein source after exercise. Many attendees also wanted to know more about the benefits of additional nutrients in specialty eggs such as enhanced content of lutein, omega-3 fatty acids and choline. I was pleased that most people who came to our booth had a basic knowledge about the eye health benefits of lutein, the infant brain development benefits of choline as well as the cardiovascular benefits of omega-3 fatty acids but wanted to know more because they were already convinced that eggs were an inexpensive source of high quality protein.

In fact, this group of exercise enthusiasts serves as a wonderful example of how eating eggs, while maintaining a healthy body weight and exercising regularly, can reduce the risk of most chronic disease.