We all know that eggs are good for us, but how good are they?
Eggs are extremely versatile and can be prepared in countless ways. Found in your baked goods, sandwiches, ice creams, soups, casseroles, and sauces, you are getting more egg in your diet than you give yourself credit for.
Related - Are Egg Whites Better Than Whole Eggs?
With the whole "fats are bad" movement that came along, eggs don't have as good of a rap as they used to.
Whole Eggs Are Okay
While most of the calories, minerals, and vitamins are in the yolk, many consume just the egg whites.
While it's true whole eggs are high in dietary cholesterol, they are also low in saturated fat - the stuff that raises your blood cholesterol levels.
Nutritional Facts of a Large Egg
The size of eggs varies from small to extra large. With size varying, a good rule of thumb is 70 to 75 calories per large egg.
With those 75 calories, you get 6 grams of protein, 5 grams of fat - only 1.5 grams are saturated, 2 grams is mono-unsaturated.
A large egg is full of vitamins and minerals:
- Vitamin D - 1mcg
- Calcium - 28mg
- Iron - 1mg
- Potassium - 69mg
- Riboflavin - 0.2mg
- Vitamin B12 - 0.4mcg
- Biotin - 10mcg
- Pantothenic Acid - 1mg
- Iodine - 27mcg
- Zinc - 1mg
- Selenium - 15mcg
- Molybdenum - 8mcg
- Choline - 147mg
Eggs are a high-quality protein source and are super cheap.
More than half of its protein is in the egg white; along with vitamin B2 and.
The yolks contain most of the calories and fat and they are the source of your healthy cholesterol, and many fat-soluble vitamins including A, D, E, and K.
Quick Fact: Did you know a study in the Paediatrics magazine suggested that giving young children one egg a day for six months, alongside a reduce sugar-sweetened food diet will help them achieve a healthy weight without stunting growth.
Eggs have caught a bad rap because before more solid research, many people were advised against eating eggs due to their higher cholesterol and fat count. As research has continued, researchers are finding that the cholesterol in foods have much less of an effect on your cholesterol levels than the number of saturated fats we eat.
Eggs are full of several nutrients that promote a healthy heart such as betaine and choline.
A study of nearly a half of a million people in China suggests that eating one egg a day may actually reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke.
The caveat here is that in addition to eating at least one egg per day, you need to practice a healthy lifestyle. That means you need to exercise and you need to make better food choices.
Eggs are a great source of vitamin D. Vitamin D helps protect your bones, prevent osteoporosis, and rickets. The method of production of the eggs you buy matter. Free range, organic, and indoor raised all have different vitamin content.
If you can get your hands on pastured or Omega-3 enriched eggs, you will have more Omega-3s and a much higher amount of vitamin A, and E.
Since eggs are full of nutritious fats, they keep you feeling satisfied. This is very important to those who need to cut back on calories.
5 Benefits of Eating Eggs
There are countless benefits to eating eggs. Here are five that you may not have heard before.
1.) Eggs Raise Your HDL Cholesterol
HDL stands for High-Density Lipoprotein. It's your "good" cholesterol.
Individuals with a higher HDL level usually have a lower risk of heart disease, stroke, and other various health problems.
One study shows that 2 eggs per day for 6 weeks increased HDL levels by 10%.
2.) Eggs Change LDL Cholesterol and are Linked to Reduced Risk of Heart Disease
LDL is your "bad" cholesterol. The subtypes of LDL have to do with the size that the particles are. There are small and dense LDL particles, and there are larger LDL particles.
Many studies show that people who have predominantly small and dense LDL particles have a higher risk of heart disease than those with the mostly large LDL particles.
Studies have shown that eggs can change small and dense LDL into the larger kind. This helps reduce your risk of heart disease.
Studies show about 90% of the people in the U.S. are getting less than the recommended amount of choline.
Choline helps build cell membranes and also has a role in producing molecules in the brain, along with many other functions.
Choline is very important and is often grouped with the B vitamins. Eggs are an excellent source of choline, where one egg contains more than 100mg.
Adults should aim for 425-550mg per day.
4.) Eggs Help Your Eyes
Eggs contain Lutein and Zeaxanthin, two important antioxidants that help with eye health.
We all know as we age that our eyesight declines. There are several different nutrients that can help slow down the degenerative processes that can occur in our eyes.
Studies show that getting adequate amounts of these nutrients significantly reduces the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration - two very common eye disorders.
Eggs are full of vitamin A. An often overlooked vitamin, a vitamin A deficiency is the most common cause of blindness in the world.
One controlled trial concluded that eating 1.3 egg yolks per day for 4.5 weeks increased your Lutein blood levels by 28-50% and Zeaxanthin by 114-142%.
5.) Eggs Are Perfect
Like I said, eggs cause a bad rap when the "fats are bad" movement came out. Eggs have been and always will be very good for your health; especially when accompanied by a moderately healthy lifestyle.
Eggs are incredibly nutritious and contain large amounts of nutrients for how many calories they have and they are inexpensive. They can take on any flavor you give them and they are easy to cook.
Eggs are pretty much a "perfect food" and give us everything we need.