Rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants, eggs are known as “nature’s multivitamin.” That’s high praise for a food that has been avoided by many for years due to high cholesterol fears. Below we dive into the truth behind eggs and discover all the reasons why you need those egg calories in your diet.
Nutrients in Eggs
It shouldn’t surprise you how nutrient rich eggs are, especially when you consider that it is supposed to grow into a baby chicken some day. Eggs contain small amounts of almost every nutrient needed by the human body, including calcium, iron, potassium, zinc, vitamin E, folate and more.
One large egg contains these nutrients in abundance:
9% of the daily recommended amount of Vitamin B12
15% of the daily recommended amount of Vitamin B2
6% of the daily recommended amount of Vitamin A
7% of the daily recommended amount of Vitamin B5
22% of the daily recommended amount of Selenium
Perfect Protein for Muscle Building
Eggs are considered to be one of the best sources of protein and are actually used as a standard by which other foods are measured (they are given a perfect score of 100 on the biological value, a score which measures the quality of protein in a foods). Eggs also contain all eight of the essential amino acids that the body needs for muscle growth and recovery. All of these nutrients are found in just one large egg at roughly 77 egg calories, 5 grams of fat, and 6 grams of protein.
What about the Fat Content?
A whole egg does contain 5 grams of fat, which is why many ditch the yolk and focus on just the egg white. Egg whites contain nothing but protein, whereas the yolk is where the fat and other nutrients are contained. However, ignoring the egg yolk not only cuts out the important nutrients contained within it, but it also eliminates the healthy dose of fat that the yolk provides. Egg yolks may contain 5 grams of fat, but only 1.6 grams of that fat is considered to be saturated fat, the bad fat we are told to avoid.
What about Cholesterol?
Eggs do contain cholesterol, with roughly 212 grams per egg, which is a lot compared to most foods. Eating cholesterol however, doesn’t always lead to an increase in cholesterol. In fact, the opposite has been found to be true. The body produces cholesterol daily in the liver. If you consume cholesterol, then the liver produces less of it in response. If you don’t consume any however, the body will produce more. Studies show that instead of negatively effecting cholesterol levels, eggs actually benefit them. In fact, eating eggs has been shown to reduce bad cholesterol levels (LDL) while boosting good cholesterol levels (HDL).
Eggs are one of the most nutrient rich and healthy foods that you can eat. The egg calories provided along with the nutrient profile of the egg make it nature’s near perfect food as well as a vital aid in muscle building.