Eggs have been a versatile food source for centuries. Have them as scrambled eggs in the morning or as a simple egg sandwich for lunch. Eggs are packed with high quality proteins and other valuable nutrients. However, there has been some concern about the high cholesterol content of eggs. As it turns out, the cholesterol issue may have been overblown. There is no question that eggs are good for us, but they should be eaten in moderation.
Much of the nutritional content of eggs is found in the egg yolk. Egg yolk has approximately 213 mg of cholesterol, which provides two thirds of your recommended daily intake. According to the latest guidelines by the American Heart Association, eggs are good for you providing you keep to the recommended cholesterol intake of 300mg per day.
The Health Benefits of Eggs
One egg contains about 7 grams of protein and 78 calories, making eggs ideal for people watching their weight. Egg whites contain more protein than egg yolks, at about 3.6 mg compared to 2.7mg for egg yolks. Eggs are an important protein source because they contain nine amino acids that your body needs for protein synthesis.
The Nutritional Value of Egg Yolks
Egg yolks have 4.5 grams fat and store the bulk of nutrients, which include the following macro nutrients and minerals:
- Protein – High quality protein for building muscle and organ tissue.
- Saturated and unsaturated fat – Fat is needed for the absorption of fat soluble vitamins.
- Vitamin B12 – vital for good central nervous system functioning
- Vitamin B9/Folate – Vital for fetal development. Folate and B12 together combats anemia.
- Calcium – Together with phosphorus and magnesium needed for good bone formation
- Iron – Important in preventing anemia and deficiency of the immune system
Other important vitamins and minerals in egg yolks include:
- Selenium – Needed for male fertility and good thyroid function
- Phosphorus – Assists in teeth and bone formation.
- Zinc – Together with selenium, it is important for a properly function immune system.
- Vitamin A – necessary for good vision, immune system and reproductive system
- Vitamin D – vital for strong bones and aids in the absorption of calcium, iron, and zinc.
- Vitamin E – crucial as an anti-oxidant, for a good immune system, skin, and eyes
- Vitamin B5 – Essential for the central nervous system, the metabolizing of glucose into energy and the immune system.
The Nutrients Content of Egg Whites
Egg white is also high in protein but low in nutrient content. However, it contains high trace amounts of Riboflavin, sodium and potassium, with zero cholesterol and insignificant amount of fat.
The Benefits of Eating Eggs
There are many benefits in eating eggs apart from the nutrient value. Eggs are source of carotenoids such as lutein and zeaxanthin, which combats macular degeneration in adults. Choline in eggs improves memory and regulates the nervous system. The high sulfur content in eggs fosters good hair and nail growth.
How Much Egg Should You Eat?
The amount of eggs you eat depends on your cholesterol level and overall health. If your cholesterol level is normal, one to three eggs per week would be fine, but you may have to cut back on high cholesterol foods such as cheese, pork sausages, red meats, sea foods, and poultry. If you have a cholesterol problem or are concerned about the high fat content of yolks, egg whites are safe to eat, as they contain no cholesterol and negligible fat.
Whenever you have concerns about your diet or anything else health related, we would love to speak with you. Visit us or give us a call at [phone_main] to speak with a pharmacy staff member.