The guidelines for dietary cholesterol and/or egg intake for both the general population and those at higher risk of cardiovascular disease (for example, people with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM)) differ between countries, and even for different specialist societies in a country. The disparity between these guidelines is at least in part related to the conflicting evidence as to the effects of eggs in the general population and in those with T2DM. This review addresses the effect of eggs on cardiovascular disease (CVD) risk from both epidemiological research and controlled prospective studies, in people with and without cardio-metabolic disease. It also examines the nutritional qualities of eggs and whether they may offer protection against chronic disease. The evidence suggests that a diet including more eggs than is recommended (at least in some countries) may be used safely as part of a healthy diet in both the general population and for those at high risk of cardiovascular disease, those with established coronary heart disease, and those with T2DM. In conclusion, an approach focused on a person's entire dietary intake as opposed to specific foods or nutrients should be the heart of population nutrition guidelines.
Keywords: cardiovascular disease; dietary cholesterol; eggs; type 2 diabetes mellitus.