Hopefully you have heard the good news and are back to eating high quality, pasture-raised eggs for breakfast. If so, pat yourself on the back, because you are doing amazing things for your health with each delicious bite. If you aren't eating eggs but want to increase nutrient density, lose weight, improve metabolism and enhance bone health (among other benefits), you might want to read this article and reconsider. Here are 7 reasons to incorporate what is sometimes called “nature’s multivitamin” taken from an article in Authority Nutrition entitled 10 Proven Health Benefits of Eggs. Read the full article with references here.
1. Eggs Are Incredibly Nutritious!
Eggs are among the most nutritious foods on the planet.
A whole egg contains all the nutrients required to turn a single cell into a baby chicken.
A single large boiled egg contains:
- Vitamin A: 6% of the RDA.
- Folate: 5% of the RDA.
- Vitamin B5: 7% of the RDA.
- Vitamin B12: 9% of the RDA.
- Vitamin B2: 15% of the RDA.
- Phosphorus: 9% of the RDA.
- Selenium: 22% of the RDA.
- Eggs also contain decent amounts of Vitamin D, Vitamin E, Vitamin K, Vitamin B6, Calcium and Zinc.
This is coming with 77 calories, 6 grams of protein and 5 grams of healthy fats.
Eggs also contain various other trace nutrients that are important for health.
Really…eggs are pretty much the perfect food, they contain a little bit of almost every nutrient we need. If you can get your hands on pastured or Omega-3 enriched eggs, then these are even better. They have more Omega-3s and are much higher in Vitamin A and E.
2. Eggs Are High in Cholesterol, But They Don’t Adversely Affect Blood Cholesterol
It is true that eggs are high in cholesterol. In fact, a single egg contains 212 mg, which is over half of the recommended daily intake of 300 mg. However… it’s important to keep in mind that cholesterol in the diet doesn’t necessarily raise cholesterol in the blood.
The liver actually produces large amounts of cholesterol every single day. When we eat more eggs, the liver just produces less cholesterol instead, so it evens out. The response to egg consumption varies between individual:
-In 70% of people, eggs don’t raise cholesterol at all.
-In the other 30% (termed “hyper responders”), eggs can mildly raise Total and LDL cholesterol.
However, as I will outline later in the article, the situation is a bit more complicated than that and these changes are actually beneficial. (Exceptions… people with genetic disorders like familial hypercholesterolemia or a gene type called ApoE4 may want to minimize or avoid eggs.).
3. Eggs Contain Choline – an Important Nutrient That Most People Don’t Get Enough of
Choline is a nutrient that most people don’t even know exists. Yet, it is an incredibly important substance and is often grouped with the B vitamins. Choline is used to build cell membranes and has a role in producing signalling molecules in the brain, along with various other functions. Dietary surveys have shown that about 90% of people in the U.S. are getting less than the recommended amount of choline. Whole eggs are an excellent source of choline. A single egg contains more than 100 mg of this very important nutrient.
4. Eggs Contain Lutein and Zeaxanthin, Antioxidants That Have Major Benefits For Eye Health
One of the consequences of ageing is that eyesight tends to get worse. There are several nutrients that help counteract some of the degenerative processes that can affect our eyes. Two of these are called Lutein and Zeaxanthin, powerful antioxidants that tend to build up in the retina of the eye.Studies show that consuming adequate amounts of these nutrients can significantl y reduce the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration, two very common eye disorders.
Egg yolks actually contain large amounts of both Lutein and Zeaxanthin. In one controlled trial, eating just 1.3 egg yolks per day for 4.5 weeks increased blood levels of Lutein by 28-50% and Zeaxanthin by 114-142%. Eggs are also high in Vitamin A, which deserves another mention here. Vitamin A deficiency is the most common cause of blindness in the world.
5. Eggs Are High in Quality Protein, With All The Essential Amino Acids in The Right Ratios
Proteins are the main building blocks of the human body. They’re used to make all sorts of tissues and molecules that serve both structural and functional purposes. Getting enough protein in the diet is very important and studies show that currently recommended amounts may be too low.
Well… eggs are an excellent source of protein, with a single large egg containing 6 grams. Eggs contain all the essential amino acids in the right ratios, so our bodies are well equipped to make full use of the protein in them. Eating adequate protein can help with weight loss, increase muscle mass, lower blood pressure and optimize bone health… to name a few.
6. Eggs Are Highly Fulfilling and Tend to Make You Eat Fewer Calories, Helping You to Lose Weight
Eggs are incredibly fulfilling. They are a high protein food… but protein is by far the most fulfilling macronutrient. Eggs score high on a scale called the Satiety Index, which measures the ability of foods to induce feelings of fullness and reduce subsequent calorie intake.
In one study of 30 overweight women, eating eggs instead of bagels for breakfast increased feelings of fullness and made them automatically eat fewer calories for the next 36 hours. In another study, replacing a bagel breakfast with an egg breakfast caused significant weight loss over a period of 8 weeks.
7. Eggs do NOT Raise Your Risk of Heart Disease and May Reduce The Risk of Stroke
For many decades, eggs have been unfairly demonized. It has been claimed that because of the cholesterol in them, they must be bad for the heart. Many studies published in recent years have examined the relationship between egg consumption and the risk of heart disease.
In one review of 17 studies with a total of 263,938 participants, no association was found between egg consumption and heart disease or stroke. Many other studies have led to the same conclusion. However… some studies have found that people with diabetes who eat eggs have an increased risk of heart disease.Whether the eggs are actually causing the increased risk isn’t known, because these types of studies can only show statistical association. They can not prove that eggs caused anything.
It is possible that diabetics who eat eggs are less health conscious, on average.
On a low-carb diet, which is by far the best diet for diabetics, eating eggs leads to improvements in risk factors for heart disease.
My take on this:
What more can I say? Eggs are officially off the chopping block. Finally they are being recognized as a veritable superfood. Do yourself a favor and eat a hearty breakfast full of pasture-raised eggs and pastured bacon!
Very important note: Always be sure the eggs you consume are pasture-raised! When they are, you can even eat them raw in your morning shake, as I do. It’ll jump start your day. Conventionally raised eggs are not equivalent. Nor are cage-free, free-range, or vegetarian fed. Never, ever eat these types of eggs raw.