Eat more eggs for healthy weight loss

Eggs in wicker basketAn egg diet is not a diet consisting of only eggs, however, it does involve eating a larger part of your protein allowance in the form of eggs.

The egg diet has its origins in the induction phase of the Atkins Diet, as eggs are one of the healthiest ways to consume a high protein, low carb diet without increasing saturated fats.  Before you carry on reading, are you looking for the Royal Marine Commando Egg Diet? This is the more popular egg based diet plan.

Nutrition of Eggs

Eggs are an excellent source of protein and other vital nutrients. They contain all the essential amino acids in the correct proportions and are therefore a good source of complete protein.

They are also a significant source of vitamins B2, B12, D, E, and folate, in addition to iron. The iron in egg yolks, like the iron found in meat, is easily absorbed by the body. Eggs contain other vitamins and minerals in smaller amounts, including vitamins B1 and B6, phosphorus, and zinc.

Eggs are also one of the best sources of choline, a substance involved in the transport of fat in the body. Choline is also important for the manufacture of phospholipids, which are the major structural components of cell membranes.

Most of the vitamins and minerals in eggs are found in the yolk, but the white is also a good source protein and contains little fat and no cholesterol.

Eggs are relatively low in calories and saturated fat, in fact egg white does not contain any fat. Nutritionists used to advise that eating eggs should be limited, but this advice has been revised.

Research also shows that there is no link between egg consumption and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease.

Eggs are an almost ideal protein source. Low in saturated fat and calories, but an excellent source of complete protein, eggs provide an inexpensive and nutritious addition to your diet.

Before the days of protein shakes, athletes and boxers would simply eat more eggs, often raw with milk, for breakfast. In fact, many professional bodybuilders still consume many eggs everyday. Jay Cutler eats around 30 egg whites a day!

How Many Eggs Should You Eat a Day?

Cholesterol is not found in large amounts in many foods, except in eggs and in offal such as liver and kidneys.

However, the cholesterol in these foods does not usually make a great contribution to blood cholesterol levels. It is a common misconception that eggs are unhealthy due to the high levels of cholesterol that they contain.

Eggs mostly contain HDL type cholesterol, which is actually good for us. HDL cholesterol protects arteries, it is the LDL type cholesterol that causes heart disease, and this generally builds up as a result of a diet high in saturated fat.

If you need to reduce your cholesterol levels, it is much more important to reduce the total amount of saturated fat you eat and to exercise more.

This is because saturated fat has more of an impact on blood cholesterol levels than eating foods high in dietary cholesterol. Eating a high-fiber diet may also help to reduce the amount of cholesterol that is absorbed into the bloodstream.

There is no limit to how many egg whites you can eat, so look at ways to use more egg whites in your cooking.

When cooking eggs, avoid adding butter and cheese, which will add saturated fat. An ideal egg meal would be a filled omelet. Eggs are a useful source of many important nutrients. An omelet filled with mushrooms and tomatoes will make a quick, tasty, and nutritious lunch.

Some Scientific Reports on Egg Consumption and Health

In the general discussion on the high protein diets, one topic that has come up is, how many eggs are safe to eat?

It is generally thought that eggs are bad for us, as they are high in cholesterol, and this leads to CHD (coronary heart disease).

However, Dr. Atkins does not think that this is the case. There is some interesting research that supports the idea that eggs are actually good for us, and you probably cannot get too many of them.

Advice from the UK Department of Health in 2009 said that adults should not have more than 2 eggs per week. Some other advice says that 4-7 eggs per week is OK for a healthy person.

But is this all nonsense? Many people who adopt the higher protein diets like the Atkins diet consume on average 21 eggs per week, and some many more.

Eggs are a great source of protein and energy, so ideal if you are on a diet that is low on carbohydrates.

Here are the main from findings publishing in a report in the Nutrition Bulletin: A. Lee, B. Griffin (2006) Dietary cholesterol, eggs and coronary heart disease risk in perspective:

“The idea that dietary cholesterol increases risk of coronary heart disease (CHD) by turning into blood cholesterol is compelling in much the same way that fish oil improves arthritis by lubricating our joints! Dietary cholesterol, chiefly in the form of eggs, has long been outlawed as a causative agent in CHD through its association with serum cholesterol. However, the scientific evidence to support a role for dietary cholesterol in CHD is relatively insubstantial in comparison with the incontrovertible link between its circulating blood relative in low density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and CHD. Interpretation of the relationship between dietary cholesterol and CHD has been repeatedly confounded by an often inseparable relationship between dietary cholesterol and saturated fat. It has also been exaggerated by the feeding of unphysiologically high intakes of eggs. Nonetheless, numerous studies have shown that dietary cholesterol can increase serum LDL-cholesterol, but the size of this effect is highly variable between individuals, and according to over 30 years of prospective epidemiology, has no clinically significant impact on CHD risk. Variation in response to dietary cholesterol is a real phenomenon and we can now identify nutrient–gene interactions that give rise to this variation through differences in cholesterol homeostasis. More importantly, to view eggs solely in terms of the effects of their dietary cholesterol on serum cholesterol is to ignore the potential benefits of egg consumption on coronary risk factors, including obesity, diabetes and metabolic syndrome. Cardiovascular risk in these conditions is largely independent of LDL-cholesterol. These conditions are also relatively unresponsive to any LDL-cholesterol raising the effects of dietary cholesterol. Treatment is focused primarily on weight loss, and it is in this respect that eggs may have a new and emerging role in facilitating weight loss through increased satiety.”

This seems to supports Dr. Atkins’ view that eggs, when eaten with a low carb diet (or carbohydrate  controlled diet), actually provide an essential source of good cholesterol, which actually prevents arteries from becoming clogged.

More on eggs from the Atkin’s website

This snippet discusses research into the relationship of egg consumption and inflammation and concludes that the type of cholesterol in eggs actually helps to increase the healthy cholesterol in the blood.

“The men who ate the low carb diet that included eggs had significantly less CRP (blood marker for inflammation) and more adiponectin than the group that didn’t eat eggs! Volek and his team speculate that the eggs make a significant contribution to the anti-inflammatory effects of a low-carb diet possibly due to two factors- the cholesterol in the eggs which increases HDL “good” cholesterol, and the antioxidant lutein (found in the yolk) which lowers inflammation.”


Egg consumption and cardiovascular health

Here is some more research that suggests that eggs are not as bad as our government health advisors keep telling us (or at least, have told us in the past): “Egg consumption and endothelial function: a randomized controlled crossover trial” by David L. Katz, Marian A. Evans, Haq Nawaz, Valentine Yanchou Njike, Wendy Chan, Beth Patton Comerford and Martha L. Hoxley.


“Background: Because of egg cholesterol content, reduction in egg consumption is generally recommended to reduce risk of cardiovascular disease. Recently, however, evidence has been accumulating to suggest that dietary cholesterol is less relevant to cardiovascular risk than dietary saturated fat. This randomized controlled crossover trial was conducted to determine the effects of egg ingestion on endothelial function, a reliable index of cardiovascular risk. Methods: Forty-nine healthy adults (mean age 56 years, 40% females) underwent a baseline brachial artery reactivity study (BARS), and were assigned to two eggs or oats daily for 6 weeks in random sequence with a 4-week washout. A BARS was done at the end of each treatment phase, measuring flow-mediated vasodilation (FMD) in the brachial artery using a high-frequency ultrasound. Results: FMD was stable in both egg and oat groups, and between-treatment differences were not significant (egg −0.96%, oatmeal −0.79%; p value >0.05). Six weeks of egg ingestion had no effect on total cholesterol (baseline: 203.8 mg/dl; post-treatment: 205.3) or LDL (baseline: 124.8 mg/dl; post-treatment: 129.1). In contrast, 6 weeks of oats lowered total cholesterol (to 194 mg/dl; p=0.0017) and LDL (to 116.6 mg/dl; p=0.012). There were no differences in body mass index (BMI), triglyceride, HDL or SBP levels between egg and oat treatment assignments. Conclusion: Short-term egg consumption does not adversely affect endothelial function in healthy adults, supporting the view that dietary cholesterol may be less detrimental to cardiovascular health than previously thought.”

Research undertaken at Yale Prevention Research Center, 130 Division Street, Derby, CT 06418, USA and published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition, Vol. 19, No. 90005, 556S-562S (2000)

Nutritional Contribution of Eggs to American Diets

More research supporting “eggs are good for you” can be found in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition, Vol. 19, No. 90005, 556S-562S (2000). “Nutritional Contribution of Eggs to American Diets” by Won O. Song, PhD, MPH, RD and Jean M. Kerver, MS, RD:

Objectives: The main purposes of this study were (1) to assess the nutritional significance of eggs in the American diet and (2) to estimate the degree of association between egg consumption and serum cholesterol concentration. Results: After adjusting for demographic (age, gender and ethnicity) and lifestyle variables (smoking and physical activity), dietary cholesterol was not related to serum cholesterol concentration. People who reported eating >= 4 eggs/wk had a significantly lower mean serum cholesterol concentration than those who reported eating <= 1 egg/wk (193 mg/dL vs. 197 mg/dL, p < 0.01). More frequent egg consumption was negatively associated with serum cholesterol concentration (ß=-6.45, p < 0.01). Conclusions: In this cross-sectional and population-based study, egg consumption made important nutritional contributions to the American diet and was not associated with high serum cholesterol concentrations.

Eggs Are Good

So eggs are good for you. They are full of healthy fats, vitamins and protein. The most recent research into cholesterol has shown that dietary cholesterol, i.e. eating food that is  high in cholesterol, is not the cause of increase heart disease risk.

The problem really lies in consumption of saturated fat, and that eggs may actually help to boost the healthy cholesterol levels in the human body. Eat more eggs, get stronger and healthier!

55 Comments on “Eat more eggs for healthy weight loss”

  1. I am 63 had a heart attack and a bypass 19 years ago. Doctors advised max 4 eggs a week and I followed the advise. 14 years later I got the same arteri problems again and doctor suggusted a new bypass. I studied Atkins advise, taken two eggs + 2X1000mg consenterated fish oil every day, after 4 years of takeing atkins advised food + eggs and fish oil the significant result is achieved. Doctor recently taken angiograf told my old bypassed right arteri is totally glogged but surprisingly a new arteri grown up from the left arteri and taken place supplying blood to the right side of my heart, so I do not need another bypass. Its realy amazing and I have now full believe on two eggs a day is not bad for heart at all.

  2. MotleyHealth says:

    Sorry it has taken so long to reply. That is excellent news. Glad your heart is getting stronger. A healthy diet really is the key to a healthy heart.

  3. “A word of warning – eggs are one of the main sources of cholesterol in the average western diet.” – FALSE, Has nothing to do with the cholesterol in our body. Egg cholesterol lowers the bad and increases the good cholesterol in our body.

  4. MotleyHealth says:

    EatEggs, you are right, and we actually knew that! Amazing what oddities slip in to our content at times. Will correct asap.



  6. MotleyHealth says:

    Gilbert, I am not aware of any evidence to suggest this. Type 2 Diabetes is generally caused by too much sugar, not a lack of protein. So, I’ll throw caution to the wind, and say no, eating lots of eggs will neither prevent or cure diabetes.

  7. Hi, I am from India and I read alot of your articles today. I was really happy to read all the content on this website. I Liked the way you reply to the questions or complaints.
    Just wanted to say, “Keep up the good work” :-)

  8. MotleyHealth says:

    Hi Aditya, we aim to please! Did you find what you were looking for?

  9. Where can I get a menu for The Egg Diet?

  10. MotleyHealth says:

    Hi Marinda, there is not really a menu, you just eat more eggs. Boiled eggs for breakfast, egg salads, etc. etc.

  11. What other ideas for menu?

  12. MotleyHealth says:

    Well, there are omelettes and scrabbled eggs, egg Florentine, boiled eggs with anything.

  13. Monday: Breakfast: 3 eggs, half grapefruit
    Lunch: 3 eggs, salad
    Dinner: 3 eggs, salad, 2 pieces of dry toast

    Tuesday: Breakfast: 2 eggs, half grapefruit
    Lunch: 2 eggs, salad
    Dinner: 1 piece steak, salad

    Wednesday: Breakfast: 2 eggs, half grapefruit
    Lunch: 2 eggs, salad
    Dinner: half tub low fat cottage cheese, salad and 2 pieces dry toast

    Thursday: Breakfast: 2 eggs, half grapefruit
    Lunch: 2 eggs, salad
    Dinner: 1 piece steak, salad

    Friday: Breakfast: 2 eggs, half grapefruit
    Lunch: 2 eggs, salad
    Dinner: 2 eggs, salad, 2 pieces of dry toast

    Saturday: Breakfast: 2 eggs, half grapefruit
    Lunch: large bowl fresh fruit salad
    Dinner: 2 pieces steak, salad

    Sunday: Breakfast: 2 eggs, half grapefruit
    Lunch: 2 eggs, salad
    Dinner: lean chicken and salad

    No sugar in coffee or tea. Non fat milk. Supplement with vitamins, omega caps, calcium caps etc

  14. Hi, can anyone tell me how much weight you are supposed to lose on the above plan….in say a week?? I am on a similar menu called the Marine commando diet but you’re only supposed to stay on it for 2 weeks a maximum of 4 times a year and lose up to 2 stone in those two weeks.

  15. MotleyHealth says:

    Hi Ally, there is no simple answer to that. Depends on what your goals are and what else you are eating / doing. Eggs are great for helping to build muscle, so you should be working out hard as well eat cutting back on starchy/sugary foods.

    As for the Marine Commando diet, 2 stone (28 pounds) in 2 weeks is not possible. That is 2 pounds a day. That much weight loss would not be safe if it was possible, but I doubt even under extreme conditions (starving yourself and still exercising) you would lose that much weight.

  16. Thanks for your reply, I realise that weight lose is always an individual aspect and people will lose differently, I just wanted to get a rough average of what can be expected on this plan. I also realise the claim of 2 stone on the marine diet is very improbably (I am a diet expert with plenty of experience! LOL) I have read a lot of folks experience with it though and there is considerable loss in a short time (even taking into consideration the initial “water” weight loss).
    Here’s the plan:

    Royal Marine Commando Diet

    Day 1
    Breakfast – 3 Eggs
    Lunch – 3 Eggs
    Dinner – 3 Eggs

    Breakfast – 1 Egg or Grapefruit
    Lunch – Fresh Fruit Salad
    Dinner – Steak, Tomatoes, Celery, Cottage Cheese

    Day 3
    Breakfast – 1 Egg or Grapefruit
    Lunch – Fish, Tomato, Spinach & Salad
    Dinner – Lean Lamb Chops, Tomatoes, Green Salad.

    Day 4
    Breakfast – 1 Egg or Grapefruit
    Lunch – Green Salad, tomatoes
    Dinner – 3 Eggs, Dry Toast

    Day 5
    Breakfast – 1 Egg or Grapefruit
    Lunch Fish, Tomatoes, and salad
    Dinner – Lean Ham salad, Tomatoes and spinach

    Day 6
    Breakfast – 1 Egg or Grapefruit
    Lunch 3 Eggs and Dry Toast
    Dinner Steak, Celery, Tomatoes and cottage cheese

    Day 7
    Breakfast 1 Egg or Grapefruit
    Lunch Fresh fruit salad
    Dinner Lean Lamb Chops, Salad and Tomatoes

    Repeat again for week 2

    Black coffee, water or pure lemon juice can be taken with the meal. Eat exactly what is stated where amounts are stated, where they are not eat as much as you like.


    No dressings or sauces only vinegar is allowed

    Do not carry out more than 2 weeks, DO NOT use this diet more than four times a year.
    There should be a loss of up to 2 stones, variations of the diet will have a MAJOR effect on the amount of weight you lose.

    Weigh yourself at the beginning and the very end of the diet

  17. MotleyHealth says:

    Another consideration of course is how much weight you need to lose. Someone that is 200 pounds overweight may lose 28 pounds in a month, but even so, that is still going something.

    One things surprises me about this diet is the toast and fresh fruit salads. Unless you are also training hard this may just add to your daily sugar intake. Ham also is not the best option due to its salt and fat content. For salad dressings I always recommend olive oil – this actually helps with weight loss.

    But really the most important factor of any diet plan is sticking to the plan, also doing lots of exercise and making a permanent lifestyle change for the future. Without this the diet is mostly wasted.

  18. I have been doing the Royal Marine Commando diet for 11 days and have lost 10 pounds :-) fingers crossed for the stone on day 14 as I am off on holiday soon and I feel much more confident :-) definite thumbs up!

  19. MotleyHealth says:

    Wow BB, that is pretty good going. How overweight are you? A pound a day is fast weight loss. After this initial success, start to focus on fitness and healthy diet to continue the weight loss.

  20. I am going on holiday in just over 5 weeks so I have been looking over this diet. I have been doing weightwatchers for 11 weeks and had lost 18 lbs (yay) but 4 lbs have crept on somehow :( . so I am thinking of doing the royal marine commando diet for 2 weeks as a boost to my will power and then go back to the weightwatchers until I go.

    I have about 25 more lbs to go so I am hoping this will get me about half way there :) don’t worry I am not expecting to lose it all before I go lol. If anyone else has done this diet will they give some indication of how well it went weight wise and how much you weighed at the start as ide like to know if anyone has done it that’s around my weight of just under 11 and half stones. :)

  21. MotleyHealth says:

    Hi Alyssa. Firstly, well done on losing 18 pounds, that is excellent progress, and glad to hear that the new WeightWatchers points system is working well.

    Have you been exercising? As in 5 weeks you should be able to burn a lot of fat off with a WeightWatchers diet combined with regular, intensive exercise. You are really always better off balancing exercise with diet. As far as daily fat loss is concerned, to reduce calories by 500 and increase exercise by 250 Calories will result in a 750 Calorie deficit. But, if you reduce Calories by 250 and increase exercise by 500 calories (of work) then you have the same daily deficit of 750 Calories, but you get fitter and stronger, which means you increase your fat burning potential.

    So, increase your exercise intensity for the next 5 weeks, and eat enough to ensure that you are never too tired to exercise.

  22. Hi, I have done the Royal Marine Diet and lost just over 2 stone in 2 weeks, following it to the letter. I did no exercise during that time, just my daily job, which is quite physical.
    It advised that no exercise should be done within the first 4 days of commencing the diet. But I suspect as with all diets, there are varying degrees of differences and claims made.

  23. MotleyHealth says:

    Yes, really any diet plan is only a guideline. Everyone has different needs and respond in different ways.

  24. As a lacto-ovo vegetarian, can I substitute tofu for the meat in the diet plans?

  25. MotleyHealth says:

    Yes you can Gamble.

  26. I am thinking of doing this diet, I have been on many diets but not tried this! the only thing is that I don’t like tomatoes, can these be substituted for something else such as mushrooms or cucumber maybe?

  27. MotleyHealth says:

    I don’t see why not. So long as you have the eggs!

  28. Hi

    This article states that there is no limit to the egg whites you can eat, does this mean it would be ok to chuck in 6- 7 whites with maybe two yolks when cooking, if i were to be looking at a high protein diet for maximum hypertrophy?


  29. MotleyHealth says:

    That’s right Jake. Take a look at the pre-contest bodybuilding diet of some pros, Jay Cutler eats 30 egg whites a day. An eggcellent source of protein!

  30. i read that somone commented on not exercising till the 4th day on the marine diet, i am on day 5 at mo and why cant you do for more than 2 weeks, what harm can it do as im finding it quite esdy, thank you.

  31. MotleyHealth says:

    Hi Liz, the only info we currently have on the marine diet is the comment from Ally. So I cannot answer the question about not exercising until day 4. As for can it cause harm, well, any diet that is very restrictive is likely to cause some problems at some point as by definition the body is not getting all the nutrition that it wants. The diet plan shared by Ally above includes fruits, meat, cheese, vegetables early on, so really your should be able to maintain this for a while.

  32. thank you for yr speedy reply could you or anyone please explain how does the body react with the chemical reaction with the food in marine diet, ive lost 6lbs so far and want keep going for another stone. thank you

  33. MotleyHealth says:

    Hi Liz, not really sure what you mean. The marine diet is just a low calorie and high protein diet. Low sugar means your blood glucose levels do not rise after eating and you do not store extra fat (insulin released slowly). Lower calories means you breakdown the fat stores. Insulin is also an inhibitor of glucagon, and glucagon is the hormone which triggers the breakdown of TAGs (fat stores). So that would be why you lose weight on a marine diet. Same as any healthy and low calorie diet really, such as a low GI diet.

  34. ahh i see, i was told to follow the diet exactly which im doing reason being the foods in the diet give yr body a chemical reaction thats why you have to stick to it very precisely.

  35. MotleyHealth says:

    Where did you get the diet information from Liz?

  36. I am on day 4 of the commando diet and lost 6.6lb in the first 3 days I’m sticking to the plan and hope to lose the 2 stone by week two which I so hope I will Good luck to anyone who’s on it too best diet I’ve ever done as it actually works
    I run and excersise at least three times a week and normally don’t lose any weight

  37. I am trying for a baby is this ok to start?

  38. MotleyHealth says:

    Not really a good idea Sue, you should focus on getting a well balanced diet with plenty of vegetables and fruits, as well as eggs and other proteins – as should your partner.

  39. Can I sub the meat for quorn products? I am a veggie but do eat eggs.

  40. MotleyHealth says:

    Of course you can Kelly. Really, the key part of the egg diet is the eggs!

  41. Makes me wonder..eggs are great but the bad news came from peple cooking them in butter and bacon grease?
    The studies never seemed to add the cooking process to the equation ??

  42. MotleyHealth says:

    Crazy isn’t it? Eggs are …… eggsellent!


  43. Hi

    I am really interested in this diet and have a query, it states that you can drink coffee, water and fresh lemon with meals. Can the coffee be replaced by tea and is there a limit to the fluids you are supposed to consume throughout the day?

  44. MotleyHealth says:

    Hi Tom, that is OK. There is not a lot of science behind this diet – it really is just eat fewer total calories, with most calories coming from eating a lot of eggs. Tea, coffee – makes little difference. There is a limit to how much fluid you can drink – too much fluid is bad for health. How much? Just go with what is natural.

  45. Hi

    I have just finished my 1st week of diet based on a high intake of eggs and few carbs. A friend of mine who is a personal trainer, has advised to give myself a weekly ‘cheat day’. Particularly after a high intensity workout session. I am feeling noticeably more energetic in my job as a teacher and have worked out 3 times this week. I intend to follow this diet for a while yet but only with the use of a cheat day where I allow myself a 4-5 beers, burger etc. Any thoughts on this?

  46. MotleyHealth says:

    Mike, if it is working for you, go for it. 4-5 beers and a burger – now that is a good cheat day!

  47. I am type 2 diabetic. Can I do this diet?

  48. MotleyHealth says:

    Hi Wozza, which diet are you referring to? This page talks only about why eggs are healthy.

    As a diabetic, you can eat plenty of eggs. Just monitor your blood glucose levels as usual. The only possible risk is the increased saturated fat found in the yolks, but this should not pose a major problem if you are managing your blood glucose numbers properly.

  49. What are saturated fat

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