Why Do Bodybuilders Eat Raw Eggs (Myth Busted)

Okay, we’ve all seen the intense bodybuilding movies where the bodybuilders Rocky or Arnold down 7-8 raw eggs and now they’re huge. So, what gives? Why do bodybuilders eat raw eggs?

Well, truthfully- we don’t. At least, if somebody is telling you they are eating raw eggs, they’re lying or need mental help. No bodybuilder actually eats raw eggs! In fact, that myth was busted a long time ago when a study revealed that eating cooked eggs gives you 40% more protein than eating them raw.

Today, bodybuilders do NOT eat raw eggs due to the risk of getting sick. However, some bodybuilders these days will eat liquid egg whites (which will not get them sick but provides protein) and mix those in protein shakes instead.

So, let’s cover: how this myth started, how the myth ended, and what bodybuilders today actually use.

Why do bodybuilders eat raw eggs? Truthfully- it was all just a myth. Photo by Flora Westbrook from Pexels
Why do bodybuilders eat raw eggs? Truthfully- it was all just a myth. Photo by Flora Westbrook from Pexels

How Did The Myth Even Start?

Well, the myth of bodybuilders eating raw eggs started a very long time ago. Although, I don’t know if we should call it a “myth”.

Truthfully, some bodybuilders back then (30+ years) did eat raw eggs. However, this was only harmful to them, but unfortunately, they didn’t know any better.

You can see this characterized in the movie Rocky:

This is where a big part of the myth came from. However, if you do any google searches or serious studying, it’s hard to find any reliable information that bodybuilders actually ate raw eggs.

The only real source would be Arnold Schwarzenegger, who advocated eating raw eggs before his first Mt.Olympia competition.

Otherwise, the idea that bodybuilders eat raw eggs regularly is just a large myth that was popularized by the movie, and nothing else.

So You’re Telling Me Bodybuilders Don’t Actually Eat Raw Eggs?

Yes, fortunately, yes. Bodybuilders do not eat raw eggs. Again, this was a myth popularized back in the day.

Sure, there’s probably some bodybuilder that eats raw eggs. But for the vast majority of bodybuilders (around 99%), we do not eat raw eggs, ever!

But I’ve Heard About Eggs in Protein Shakes, What Gives?

Excellent question! Here’s the thing, in protein shakes when they tell you to be putting ‘eggs’ in- they are referencing liquid egg whites.

Typically if you find any protein shake recipe with eggs in it, it will always say ‘add 2 cups of liquid egg whites’.

But, what are egg whites? Egg whites are well, the white parts of the eggs, removing the egg yolk. But, it’s sold in a store, in a liquid form- if that makes sense?

I know, it was weird to me when I first started bodybuilding too. But in the stores, they sell liquid egg whites that are safe for consumption.

They barely taste like anything, but they add quite a bit of protein to any shake you drink. Especially since it is a liquid form, you can easily add 30-40g of protein in the morning right away.

But, Do Raw Eggs Do Anything? What If I Ate Raw Eggs For Bodybuilding?

Well, you’re not going to be happy.

First of all, eating raw eggs gives you only half the protein eating a cooked egg does. So…you’re just losing protein.

Secondly, you have a high chance of getting sick. In the United States of America, eggs are required to be refrigerated for a certain reason that other countries don’t.

In the United States of America, the cleaning procedures of eggs weakens the shell so much that bacteria/viruses inside the egg can grow. It’s complicated to explain, and it would take a weird understanding of microbiology to really understand it.

However, this is why the eggs are refrigerated, without it, the eggs would make you sick.

This means in the United States, eating raw eggs just isn’t a safe idea. Sure, the chances of you actually getting sick are fairly low. Other countries like Great Britain/England have different procedures that avoid salmonella outbreaks, but their procedures are a little different.

Is there a good way to clean the eggs? I don’t know, I’m not a politician or egg cleaning man.

The bottom line is: in the USA, eating raw eggs only poses to make you sick, and nothing else.

The Study on Proving Raw Eggs Don’t Absorb As Much

Back in 1998 (nearly 20-30 years after Rocky was released), a study named ‘Digestibility of cooked and raw egg protein in humans as assessed by stable isotope techniques’ was released to the public.

If you eat a raw egg, here’s how much of it you’ll digest: 51.3%

They found out that if you ate the cooked egg, here is how much of the protein you would digest: 90.9%.

See the problem? You can drink 4 raw eggs, it’ll be the equivalent of eating 2 eggs.

If you cook 4 eggs, it will be the equivalent of eating 3.64 eggs.

Eating those raw eggs aren’t good. It’s a waste of money, food, and your time at the end of the day.

And let’s not begin with how expensive it is if you get food poisoning, those hospital trips aren’t cheap. Also, you’re going to lose a lot of your muscle if you’re out of the gym and not able to eat because you got food poisoning.

So don’t think it’s a good idea to be eating raw eggs, just cook them.

Conclusion of Why Do Bodybuilders Eat Raw Eggs

The truth is, bodybuilders don’t eat raw eggs.

Eating eggs raw gives you half of the protein, can give you food poisoning, can ruin your gains, and worse. Furthermore, it’s just more or less a myth or ‘wives tale’, and in today’s day and age, nobody is drinking raw eggs.

And please don’t drink raw eggs, it’s just not worth it. Just cook them. And let’s get into the gym and GET BIG.

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