Eggs have had a bad press over the last few decades. From the salmonella scare in the UK to news articles about the amount of cholesterol they contain, its not surprising that some people wonder whether they should be avoiding eggs altogether. But here are ten great reasons why eggs should definitely be a part of your healthy diet.
1. Eggs contain almost every vitamin and mineral required by the human body. Some of these are only in very small quantities, but 100g of boiled eggs contains 12% of your DV of vitamin A, 19% B12, 15% B2, 14% B5, 9% B9, 44% selenium and 17% phosphorus, together with smaller amounts of calcium, zinc, iron, vitamin E and many more!
2. A single large egg contains 6 grams of protein. Eating protein for breakfast helps maintain both physical and mental energy levels throughout the day, and having enough protein in your diet can help with weight loss. Eggs also contain 9 essential amino acids in the correct ratios for the human body to make use of, so our bodies are well equipped to make use of the protein we’re consuming.
3. A large egg contains just 77 calories.
4. Eggs are a good source of choline. This is a little-heard of nutrient that is sometimes grouped with B-vitamins, though it was only recognised as a required nutrient in 1998 by the Food and Nutrition Board of the US Institute of Medicine. Choline is vital for building cell membranes and also has a role in producing signalling molecules in the brain, and choline deficiency may play a role in liver disease, atherosclerosis and some neurological disorders.
5. Eating eggs can help protect your eyesight! The antioxidants lutein and zeaxanthin, which build up the retina of the eye, are both found in eggs. Consuming adequate amounts of these antioxidants can reduce the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration.6. Despite their high cholesterol level, eggs are still healthy for the majority of people. This is because cholesterol in the diet doesn’t necessarily raise cholesterol in the blood. That might sound bizarre, but we actually *need* cholesterol for cellular functions, so the liver produces it daily, and if we eat a lot of cholesterol, the liver produces less. Plus, there are two types of cholesterol, so the situation is more complex than this…
7. Eating eggs can increase levels of HDL cholesterol (the ‘good’ kind). People who have higher levels of HDL usually have a lower risk of heart disease, stroke and various health problems. So eggs don’t increase your risk of heart disease – in fact they can actually help reduce it!
8. Due to their high protein content, eating eggs can help you feel fuller for longer, and thus help with weight loss.
9. Eggs contain less than 1% carbohydrates or sugars and are gluten free
10. Poached eggs, boiled eggs, omelettes, egg noodles, devilled eggs, salads, frittata, egg custard, crème caramel…they’re one of the most versatile foods on the planet! You can find more information on the calorie content of various types of egg on our companion website here.