This blog post comes from a place very close to my heart.
I enjoy food. A lot. And one of my favourites are eggs. But unfortunately, they have a pretty negative reputation, which has been created through misinformed, fear mongering eggophobes (look it up, its a thing).
Eggs tend to get a bad rap based on the moderate amount of cholesterol they contain, and the assumption that dietary cholesterol intake directly increases blood cholesterol (which is also perceived as bad). Interestingly, our body is a pretty clever piece of machinery, and doesn’t quite work like this.
Your body actually produces cholesterol. A heap of it each day (up to 10 times of that found in an egg). And interestingly, when you consume more cholesterol (eat eggs), your body makes less of it. And vice versa. In fact, consuming more eggs has actually shown to cause increases in blood HDL (good cholesterol) with subsequent decreases in blood LDL (bad cholesterol)
This means that the consumption of eggs won’t negatively impact blood cholesterol, and therefore doesn’t increase the risk of heart disease. Now that we hunderstand why we don’t have to avoid eggs, here is a few reasons as to why we should eat more of them.
Whole eggs are one of the most nutritious food on the planet
Eggs are nutrient dense. They are full of vitamins, minerals, good fats and a heap of other nutrients. They contain significant amounts of Vitamin A, B12, B2, B5 and selenium, with small amounts of Calcium, Iron, Potassium, Zinc, Folate and a HEAP more (all of which are in the yolk, so eat your yolks people).
Not to mention a large egg contains 5-7 grams of protein (with all 9 essential amino acids!). Seriously, one of the easiest ways to eat more protein is to eat eggs at breakfast. Breakfast Gainz.
Eggs are rich in antioxidants
These antioxidants have been shown to gather in the eye and protect against various eye diseases such as Macular Degeneration and Cataracts
Improved night vision? Maybe.
Eggs are filling and have shown to aid fat loss
Eggs score fairly high on the Satiety Index, which suggests that they have the capacity to make you feel full, irrespective of their relatively low energy content. It has been seen that those who eat eggs for breakfast rather than a carbohydrate dense food such as bagels tend to eat less throughout the day.
They have also suggested to improve rate of fat loss compared to carbohydrate rich foods when eaten for breakfast, as demonstrated in an interesting study by Vander Wal (2008). In which, overweight men and women ate either eggs or bagels for breakfast for 8 weeks. The breakfast contained the SAME amount of calories. After the 8 week period the egg group had significantly greater reductions in BMI, weight loss, waist circumference, and body fat compared to the bagel group, despite both meals containing the same amount of energy.
To summarise: Eggs are boss. The next time you’re out for breakfast don’t feel guilty when ordering an 8 egg omelette, and if by some chance the waiter decides to make a snide remark about 'egg cholesterol', feel free to drop some of the knowledge bombs mentioned in this post.
Fernandez, Maria Luz. "Dietary cholesterol provided by eggs and plasma lipoproteins in healthy populations." Current Opinion in Clinical Nutrition & Metabolic Care 9.1 (2006): 8-12.
Mutungi, Gisella, et al. "Eggs distinctly modulate plasma carotenoid and lipoprotein subclasses in adult men following a carbohydrate-restricted diet."The Journal of nutritional biochemistry 21.4 (2010): 261-267.
Gale, Catharine R., et al. "Lutein and zeaxanthin status and risk of age-related macular degeneration." Investigative ophthalmology & visual science 44.6 (2003): 2461-2465.
Delcourt, Cécile, et al. "Plasma lutein and zeaxanthin and other carotenoids as modifiable risk factors for age-related maculopathy and cataract: the POLA Study." Investigative ophthalmology & visual science 47.6 (2006): 2329-2335.
Vander Wal, Jillon S., et al. "Short-term effect of eggs on satiety in overweight and obese subjects." Journal of the American College of Nutrition 24.6 (2005): 510-515.
Vander Wal, J. S., et al. "Egg breakfast enhances weight loss." International Journal of obesity 32.10 (2008): 1545-1551.