To highlight the link between egg protein and potential side effects, consideration must be given to ‘egg allergies’. Eggs are one of the food types that make up the ‘Big 8’. These are the 8 common foods that make up 90% of all food allergies. Egg allergy suffers will be aware from childhood of the side effects and as such will avoid eggs and products with egg traces such as egg protein, although around 50% will outgrow the allergy by the ages of 5-7. Unless a person is allergic to eggs, generally with moderate intake there are no side effects associated with supplementing with egg protein powder. However, if taken in large volumes, mild bloating and constipation can occur.
Egg Protein Allergy
The NHS defines an allergy as “an adverse reaction that the body has to a particular food or substance in the environment”. Egg allergies vary in severity however suffers may experience side effects like skin reactions such as hives or eczema and ‘allergic conjunctivitis’ such as itchy, red and watery eyes. Depending on how severe their allergy, in more severe cases, a person may experience a range of side effects such as gastrointestinal problems, weight gain, headaches and nausea, as well as vomiting and dizziness. Those with egg allergies should avoid egg protein.
Egg Protein & Salmonella
Drinking raw eggs ‘Rocky style’ is not recommended, due to the risk of catching salmonella with well-publicised side effects. Food poisoning from the ‘Salmonella Bacterium’ (found in uncooked eggs), can cause side effects such as diarrhoea, fever, and abdominal cramps, leaving you ill for days on end. However, pasteurised eggs and egg protein supplement powders such as Egg Protein 80 from The Protein Works are completely safe due to the manufacturing process which removes the potentially dangerous bacteria.
Egg Protein & Lecithin
Egg protein contains lecithin, a fatty substance found in the yolk of eggs. Lecithin is fine to safely consume when taking 10-30g per day as part of an egg protein supplement, however, higher doses can cause a range of side effects as above. Although these symptoms were proven by the consumption of lecithin supplements, not eggs, they are strikingly similar to those experienced by egg allergy suffers. If you are unsure whether you are allergic to egg or the lecithin they contain, it is best to seek medical advice.
Egg Protein & Cholesterol
Once promoted by health agencies, doctors and fitness professionals, the old tale that eating ‘more than 2 eggs are week will raise cholesterol levels’ has thankfully been dispelled by science. A study published in July 2013, by the University of Granada, Spain, involved subjects from nine countries and they concluded: “Eating larger amounts of egg is neither linked to higher serum cholesterol nor to worse cardiovascular health in adolescents, regardless of their levels of physical activity”. Therefore it appears that supplementing with egg protein will have no effect on your cholesterol levels.
Pure Egg Protein
One of the cheapest, easiest and mess free ways to enjoy egg protein is now available as a supplement from The Protein Works – Egg Protein 80. Every 100g contains 80g of lean protein. It is a lean, lactose and carbohydrate free protein source. Consuming the benefits of egg protein in shake form means you get a medium release protein, without the hassle of cleaning up cracked egg shells! A 500g packet of Egg Protein 80 from The Protein Works costs £12.99 for 16 servings. This equates to 81p per serving (23.7g protein) which is around the same as 4 medium eggs!