The questions we all wonder; are egg whites or eggs (yolk) healthy? Which types of eggs are the best for you; organic, free range, Omega 3 or All natural?
Many people have misconceptions of Eggs i.e. high cholesterol content of eggs raised blood cholesterol levels which can increase a person’s risk of heart disease, egg whites are better, or eggs are high in fat. Bottom line is eggs “best source of complete protein on food. the planet,” eggs manage to remain nutritious, inexpensive, and popular.
But you do need to be careful with the type of eggs you purchase, for example liquid egg beaters contain other ingredients such as undefined “natural flavor,” coloring, spices, salt, onion powder, xanthan gum and guar gum.
According to Becky Hand, Licensed and Registered Dietitian, many nutrients are added to make up for the ones lost from the yolk, so egg substitute will usually contain varying amounts of iron, zinc, folate, thiamin, riboflavin, vitamins A, E, B6 and B12, and have an equivalent amount of protein as whole eggs.
Studies have concluded that egg consumption is not associated with higher cholesterol levels but is associated with higher nutrient intake.
Published in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition:
Eggs make important nutritional contributions to the American diet and their consumption is not associated with high cholesterol levels. Specifically, the study showed that egg consumers had a higher intake of important nutrients like vitamins B12, A, E, and C than non-egg eaters, and that people who reported eating four or more eggs per week actually had significantly lower average cholesterol levels than those who reported eating zero to one eggs per week.
Here are four more ways eggs can enhance your health:
- Eggs are an excellent source of low-cost, high-quality protein. One large egg provides more than 6 grams of protein, yet contains only 75 calories. Protein provides all nine of the body’s essential amino acids.
- Eggs are one of the best sources of choline. This is found primarily in the egg yolk, one large egg provides 30% of the recommended daily allowance (RDA) of this essential nutrient, plays an important role in brain health and the reduction of inflammation. Many people are deficient in choline, which is found in trace amounts of many different foods.
- Eggs are a great food for those trying to lose weight. Because of the high amount of quality protein in eggs, they make a very satisfying breakfast, which is especially useful for people trying to lose weight.
- Eggs protect eyesight. Egg yolks contain a highly absorbable form of vision-protective carotenoids like lutein and zeaxanthin, which help to prevent age-related macular degeneration and cataracts. Studies published in the Journal of Nutrition showed that eggs increased blood levels of these nutrients without increasing cholesterol or triglyceride levels.
- In a 2007 study published in the journal Medical Science Monitor, no significant difference in cardiovascular diseases (like stroke and heart attack) were observed between people who consumed more than six eggs per week and those who consumed one or fewer eggs per week. So a couple of eggs a day, a few days a week, should be safe and health for most people.
- According to Becky Hand, a Licensed and Registered Dietitian for SparkPeople,“One egg daily can easily be a part of a well-balanced, nutritious diet for healthy adults.” An important exception is for diabetics, who experienced an increased risk of coronary artery disease when consuming greater than six eggs per week. If you have a medical condition such as heart disease or diabetes, Hand suggests checking with your physician (or dietitian) regarding egg consumption and dietary restrictions.
Egg Choices, which is the best ?
Be prepared for an onslaught of choices. Beyond just white and brown, you’ll see a whole new world of choices in the refrigerator such as liquid egg beaters known as “Designer Eggs”.According to Mark’s daily apple here are 4 main eggs to choose from:
- Cage Free
Technically, cage free hens don’t live in stifling metal cages; instead, they might still live in stifling, overcrowded henhouses! Some cage free hens’ lives aren’t much qualitatively better than those who live in cages and most still aren’t getting any access to the outdoors, but they’re generally raised with better food and better treatment.
Organic is more useful and easy to pin down. Organic egg producing hens are given organic feed, no antibiotics (unless in the case of an outbreak), and limited access to the outdoors (just a door to their cage or barn, really). These are better than your average mass-produced egg, but your best bet is still to find a truly pasture-raised egg.
- All Natural
All produce is natural. These eggs weren’t created in a lab by a team of white coats. Even the most steroid-pumped, antibiotic-immersed hens produce “natural” eggs the way nature intended: by laying them. “All natural” is just a subtly disingenuous term used to conjure up images of hens happily pecking away at seeds and bounding through pastures, only to return home for the nightly egg-laying. It’s a feel-good phrase that distracts consumers from the fact that most eggs are produced in appalling, wholly unnatural conditions. Feel free to eat all natural eggs, but don’t be fooled into thinking they’re of any particular improvement in quality.
- Omega-3 Fortified
Omega-3 fortified eggs come from hens fed flax, linseed, or a direct supplement. The healthy fats do trickle down to the consumer, but in varying degrees. Seeds (especially flax) aren’t the greatest source of omega-3 fats anyway, so we would advise you not to rely on the fortified eggs for your healthy fat source. Buy these if you like – omega-3 fortified eggs also tend to come from organic, cage-free birds, so they’re generally better – but stick with the fish oil, too.
Best Eggs are:
***Pasture raised eggs, which can be found in farmer’s market or gourmet grocery stores such as whole foods, Vita farmers.
If you can’t find this option or if you find this too expensive (NY prices $6.99 per case), stick with organic, cage free, free range eggs with OMEGA 3. Their chickens may not have been out frolicking, but at least they weren’t stuffed into cages and force-fed drugs.
Further information A study (PDF) of fourteen free range chicken farms conducted by Mother Earth News, confirms that true pasture/range free chickens, given a natural diet of grains, insects, grasses, and seeds, produce eggs loaded with nutrients. Pasture raised eggs have more beta-carotene, vitamins E and A, and omega-3 levels, with less cholesterol and saturated fat than mass-market eggs.
Try this breakfast recipe out with your Vita or cage free eggs!
What you need:
- Turkey slice (applegate nitrate free)
- 2 Eggs vita or pasture raised
- coconut oil
- seasoning (garlic, red pepper etc)
- grab a wok or pan spread a teaspoon of coconut oil and heat low such as 3
- mix the yolks in a separate plate
- pour mixed yolks into wok (omelet style)
- add 6 pieces of spinach and separate on top of the egg liquid on the wok
- place the turkey slice on top of the spinach pieces
- wait 5mins til eggs have cooked
- fold eggs in half like sandwich
- wait for 1 min, make sure eggs cooked (no liquid)