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Eggs

Background

Bird eggs have long been enjoyed as a source of protein in cuisines worldwide. Eggs come in a variety colors and sizes depending on the bird they come from (i.e. duck, goose, quail, turkey, ostrich eggs, etc.). The most commonly consumed in North America are chicken eggs (laid by hens). Eggs are a largely versatile food that can be incorporated into any meal or snack in a variety of ways. Commonly, eggs are enjoyed as a filling breakfast food simply pan-cooked, poached, or scrambled. Vegetable omelettes, frittatas, and egg wraps or sandwiches can be enjoyed not only at breakfast but as balanced lunch and supper meals. The proteins in an egg help add structure to cooked or baked recipes such as cakes, pancakes, waffles, mousses, meringues, muffins and many more applications. Don’t forget: a simple hard-boiled egg can be a great little portable protein snack to take with you when you head out the door!

Benefits

  • The belief that eggs increase cardiovascular disease risk due to high cholesterol levels has been invalidated as these studies were not properly designed. In fact, more recent evidence suggests that eggs may exhibit cardioprotective effects by their concentrated source of carotenoids. These substances help reduce inflammation in the body.
  • Eggs are higher in essential nutrients including vitamin A, folate, iodine, and biotin when compared to other common protein sources.
  • Eggs are an excellent source of dietary choline. Choline is a vitamin that plays a role in the formation of cellular membranes. It is a key precursor for neurotransmitters involved in memory and muscle control.
  • Eggs are considered a High Biological Value protein or “complete protein.” This means that one egg contains 100% of the amino-acids, the little building blocks of protein, needed to form a “complete protein”. For this reason, eggs are used as a reference for evaluating the protein quality in other foods!

Nutritional Value of One Large Chicken Egg (50 g)

  • 73 calories
  • 5 g carbohydrate
  • 0 g fibre
  • 9 g protein
  • 0 g fat
  • ~19% recommended daily intake of riboflavin
  • Over 25% of adequate daily intake of choline

 

Did You Know

The yolk colour of the egg is closely related to the hen’s diet. If you can purchase your eggs from a local farm with pasture-raised hens, you will notice that the yolks are likely darker in color. This is related to a diet higher in pigmented plants versus only white corn feed of indoor hens.

 

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