Why do Americans continue to eat a food which can harm them both short term and long term?
In addition to salmonella, eggs are the highest cholesterol food known to man, causing the heart attacks and stroke 33.5 million Americans take statins to avoid. Hello? They are also linked to diabetes, ovarian cancer and contain antibiotic residues.
Yet as unnecessary as eggs are in the diet (baking alternatives exist), as cruel to animals, as banal as a consumer product, demand is kept alive by the egg industry like fur coats.
Ask for an egg-free pastry in otherwise politically correct Starbucks in Chicago and you'll get a blank stare. (Thank you, Argo Tea.)
Last week FDA Commissioner Dr. Margaret Hamburg warned if you eat your eggs runny and over easy something else could become runny and over easy (not to mention sunny side up.)
Krista Eberle of the United Egg Producers' Egg Safety Center agreed, telling USA Today "all the responsibility cannot be placed on the farmer. Somewhere along the line consumers have to be responsible for what they put in their bodies."
While the FDA and egg industry's "boil order" may spare people salmonella's bloody diarrhea, fever and vomiting, boiling sewage probably makes it safe too. Before you buy your next carton of eggs, consider this.
1) Yuck factor
Undercover video shot at Menifee, CA-based Norco Ranch egg farm in 2008 shows bloody, insect-covered eggs destined for tomorrow's omelets. Video also shows the bleeding and prolapsed hen's vents that produced the eggs, conditions for which they received no veterinary care.Egg operations are so plagued with salmonella and other bacteria, the FDA found a hatchery injecting antibiotics directly into eggs.And the eggs those birds laid? They had residues of antibiotics, says at least one medical study. http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/jf000140s
2) Ovarian cancer
"Our findings suggested that ovarian cancer risk was positively associated with higher consumption of dietary cholesterol and eggs," says the journal, Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention. The American Journal of Epidemiology, the Journal of the National Cancer Institute and the Asian Pacific Journal of Cancer Prevention agree. Results from the Nurses' Health Study, a 20 year study of 84,129 women, also show an egg consumption/ovarian cancer link. Why are we surprised? Human eggs are produced in women's ovaries.
3) Eggs Produced Amid Carcasses and Moribund Hens
Laying hens crammed into battery cages don't always survive. And while workers periodically come through to remove them from the living as undercover video from Turlock, CA-based Gemperle Enterprises farms shows* (Gemperle eggs are distributed by NuCal Foods, a U.S. Department of Defense vendor), dying hens also surround the "farm-fresh" eggs. "Another live hen, also trapped under her cage's front wall, had the side of her face on a moving egg belt. I saw that the side of her face, including her eye, was encrusted in what appeared to be egg yolk and dust," writes an undercover humane investigator at a DeCoster farm last year. The DeCoster family are the producers at the heart of the salmonella outbreak and egg recall. *http://www.mercyforanimals.org/caeggs/
4) Steeped in Noxious Gases