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Are Eggs Considered a Dairy Product?

Health + Wellness
Are Eggs Considered a Dairy Product?
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By Adda Bjarnadottir, MS

For some reason, eggs and dairy are often grouped together.


Therefore, many people speculate whether the former are considered a dairy product.

For those who are lactose intolerant or allergic to milk proteins, it's an important distinction to make.

This article explains whether eggs are a dairy product.

Eggs Are Not a Dairy Product

Eggs are not a dairy product. It's as simple as that.

The definition of dairy includes foods produced from the milk of mammals, such as cows and goats (1Trusted Source).

Basically, it refers to milk and any food products made from milk, including cheese, cream, butter, and yogurt.

On the contrary, eggs are laid by birds, such as hens, ducks, and quail. Birds are not mammals and don't produce milk.

While eggs may be stored in the dairy aisle and are often grouped with dairy, they're not a dairy product.

Summary

Eggs are not a dairy product, as they're not produced from milk.

Why Eggs Are Often Categorized With Dairy

Many people group eggs and dairy together.

Though they're not related, they do have two things in common:

  • They are animal products.
  • They are high in protein.

Vegans and some vegetarians avoid both, as they're derived from animals — which may add to the confusion.

Furthermore, in the United States and many other countries, eggs are stored in the dairy aisle of grocery stores, which could lead people to believe they're related.

However, this could simply be because both products require refrigeration (2Trusted Source).

Summary

Eggs and dairy products are often grouped together. They're both animal products but otherwise not related.

Eggs and Lactose Intolerance

If you're lactose intolerant, it is perfectly safe to eat eggs.

Lactose intolerance is a digestive condition in which your body cannot digest lactose, the main sugar in milk and dairy products.

It's estimated that about 75% of adults worldwide cannot digest lactose (3Trusted Source).

People with lactose intolerance may develop digestive symptoms like gas, stomach cramps, and diarrhea after ingesting this substance (3Trusted Source).

However, eggs are not a dairy product and don't contain lactose or any milk protein.

Therefore, similarly to how eating dairy won't affect those with an egg allergy, eating eggs will not affect those with a milk allergy or lactose intolerance — unless you're allergic to both.

Summary

Since eggs are not a dairy product, they don't contain lactose. Therefore, those who are lactose intolerant or allergic to milk proteins can eat eggs.

Extremely Nutritious and Healthy

Eggs are one of the most nutritious foods you can eat (4Trusted Source).

Despite being relatively low in calories, eggs are rich in good-quality protein, fat, and a variety of nutrients.

One large egg contains (5):

  • Calories: 78
  • Protein: 6 grams
  • Fat: 5 grams
  • Carbs: 1 gram
  • Selenium: 28% of the Daily Value (DV)
  • Riboflavin: 20% of the DV
  • Vitamin B12: 23% of the DV

Eggs also contain smaller amounts of almost every vitamin and mineral that your body needs.

What's more, they're one of the very few dietary sources of choline, a very important nutrient that most people don't get enough of (6).

Plus, they're very filling and have been shown to be a great weight loss food (7Trusted Source, 8Trusted Source).

In fact, studies indicate that the simple act of eating eggs for breakfast can cause people to eat up to 500 fewer calories over the course of the day (8Trusted Source, 9Trusted Source).

Summary

Eggs are low in calories but highly nutritious. They're also very filling and may aid weight loss.

The Bottom Line

Though eggs and dairy products are both animal products and often stored in the same supermarket aisle, they're otherwise unrelated.

Dairy is produced from milk, whereas eggs come from birds.

Thus, despite the widespread misunderstanding, eggs are not a dairy product.

Reposted with permission from our media associate Healthline.

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In early October, Britain's Prince William teamed up with conservationist David Attenborough to launch the Earthshot Prize, a new award for environmentalist innovation. The Earthshot brands itself the "most prestigious global environment prize in history."

The world-famous wildlife broadcaster and his royal sidekick appear to have played an active role in the prize's inception, and media coverage has focused largely on them as the faces of the campaign.

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With more and more global attention on the climate crisis, celebrity endorsement of environmental causes has become more common. But why do environmental causes recruit famous faces for their campaigns? And what difference can it make?

'Count Me In'

"We need celebrities to reach those people who we cannot reach ourselves," says Sarah Marchildon from the United Nations Climate Change secretariat (UNFCCC) in Bonn, Germany.

Marchildon is a proponent of the use of celebrities to raise awareness of environmental causes. In addition to promoting a selection of climate ambassadors who represent the UN on sustainability issues, Marchildon's team has produced videos with well-known narrators from the entertainment world: among them, Morgan Freeman and Mark Ruffalo.

"We choose celebrities who have a lifestyle where they are already talking about these issues," Marchildon explains.

"Sometimes they reach out to us themselves, as David Attenborough did recently. And then they can promote the videos on their own social channels which reach more people than we do — for example, if they have 20 million followers and we have 750,000."

Environmental groups focused on their own domestic markets are also taking this approach. One Germany-based organization that uses celebrities in campaigns is the German Zero NGO. Set up in 2019, it advocates for a climate-neutral Germany by 2035.

German Zero produced a video in March 2020 introducing the campaign with "66 celebrities" that supported the campaign, among them Deutschland 83 actor Jonas Nay and former professional footballer Andre Schürrle. They solicit support as well as financial contributions from viewers.

"Count me in," they say, pointing toward the camera. "You too?"

"We are incredibly grateful for the VIPs in our videos," says German Zero spokeswoman Eva-Maria McCormack.

Assessing Success Is Complex

But quantifying the effectiveness of celebrity endorsement of campaigns is not a straightforward process.

"In order to measure effectiveness, first of all you need to define what is meant by success," says Alegria Olmedo, a researcher at the Zoology Department at the University of Oxford.

Olmedo is the author of a study looking at a range of campaigns concerning pangolin consumption, fronted by local and Western celebrities, in Vietnam and China. But she says her biggest stumbling block was knowing how to measure a campaign's success.

"You need a clear theory of change," explains Olmedo. "Have the celebrities actually helped in achieving the campaign's goals? And how do you quantify these goals? Maybe it is increased donations or higher engagement with a cause."

A popular campaign in China in recent years saw famous chefs Zhao Danian and Shu Yi pledge to abstain from cooking endangered wildlife. While the pledge achieved widespread recognition, both Olmedo and Marchildon say it's difficult to know whether it made any difference to people's actions.

"In life we see a thousand messages every day, and it is very hard to pinpoint whether one campaign has actually made a difference in people's behavior," she explains.

Awareness Is Not Enough

Many campaigns that feature celebrities focus on raising awareness rather than on concrete action — which, for researcher Olmedo, raises a further problem in identifying effectiveness.

"Reach should never be a success outcome," she says. "Many campaigns say they reached a certain number of people on social media. But there has been a lot of research that shows that simply giving people information does not mean they are actually going to remember it or act upon it."

But anecdotal evidence from campaigns may suggest reach can make an active difference.

"Our VIP video is by far the most watched on our social media channels," McCormack from German Zero says. "People respond to it very directly. A lot of volunteers of all ages heard about us through that video."

However, some marketing studies have shown that celebrity endorsement of a cause or product can distract from the issue itself, as people only remember the person, not the content of what they were saying.

Choosing the Right Celebrity

Celebrity choice is also very important. Campaigns that use famous faces are often aiming to appeal to members of the public who do not necessarily follow green issues.

For certain campaigns with clear target audiences, choosing a climate scientist or well-known environmentalist rather than a celebrity could be more appealing — Attenborough is a classic example. For others, images and videos involving cute animals may be more likely to get a message heard than attaching a famous face.

"We choose celebrities who have a lifestyle where they are already talking about these issues," says Marchildon from the UN. "You need figures with credibility."

McCormack cites the example of Katharine Hayhoe, an environmental scientist who is also an evangelical Christian. In the southern United States, Hayhoe has become a celebrity in her own right, appealing to an audience that might not normally be interested in the messages of climate scientists.

But as soon as you get a celebrity involved, campaigns also put themselves at risk of the whims of that celebrity. Prince William and younger members of the royal family have come under fire in recent years for alleged hypocrisy for their backing of environmental campaigns while simultaneously using private jets to fly around the world.

But Does It Really Work?

While environmental campaigns hope that endorsement from well-known figures can boost a campaign, there is little research to back this up.

"The biggest finding [from my study] was that we were unable to produce any evidence that shows that celebrity endorsement of environmental causes makes any difference," says Olmedo.

This will come as a blow to many campaigns that have invested time and effort into relationships with celebrity ambassadors. But for many, the personal message that many celebrities offer in videos like that produced by German Zero and campaigns like the Earthshot Prize are what counts.

The research may not prove this conclusively — but if the public believes a person they respect deeply personally cares about an important issue, they are perhaps more likely to care too.

"I personally believe in the power this can have," says Marchildon. "And if having a celebrity involved can get a single 16-year-old future leader thinking about environmentalist issues — that is enough."

Reposted with permission from DW.

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