With Easter around the corner, it seems like a good time to shed some light on the nutrient value in a single egg. Eggs have longed been associated with cholesterol, and as a result avoided by many. While it is true that eggs contain cholesterol, they contain a host of other beneficial nutrients too. Cutting eggs out of your diet is likely to do more harm than good. It is possible and very easy to enjoy eggs as part of a healthy lifestyle but as with all foods, even those deemed to be ‘super’, moderation and dietary diversity are equally important factors in a healthy diet.
In addition to being an excellent source of protein, eggs are one of the few food sources of Vitamin D – an important fat soluble vitamin for immune protection and bone health. Long hours spent indoors and the necessary lathering of suntan lotion limit Vitamin D production by the skin in the presence of sunlight. As a result, deficiencies in Vitamin D are not uncommon. Aim to include an egg at least 3 times in your weekly menu.
If you are not yet convinced, there is much more that eggs have to offer. Eggs are also good sources of vitamin A, B vitamins, iron, folic acid, potassium, calcium, phosphorous and choline. Eggs, second only to liver are the best dietary source of choline. Choline assists the body with the transport and metabolism of fats, while keeping the cells of the body healthy and producing substances that send messages to the brain.
And as an added bonus, an egg is economical in both monetary value and energy. For less than R2.50 (bought in bulk), you can get all of the above for less than 300 kJ.
If you are tempted to ditch the yolk of your egg, it is well worth noting that most of the nutrients are found in the yolk, including 40% of an eggs protein content.
5 ways to include eggs as part of your healthy diet
- Poached eggs with avo on wholegrain toast for a weekend brekkie
- Baked french toast with grilled banana, plain yoghurt and honey
- Boiled egg and sliced baby potatoes with light mayo for lunch
- Add eggs to your oats just before they are cooked
- Snack on brown rice cakes with Marmite and a boiled egg post gym