We hear they raise our cholesterol, contribute to heart disease and should be limited. We have been told to avoid the yolk, eat the whites, buy processed egg substitutes. The fact is, eggs are one of the most nutrient dense foods out there! This may be surprising to you but the yolk is the best part so don’t dump it down the sink. It contains the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K along with calcium, iron, phosphorus, zinc, thiamin, folate, vitamin B6, vitamin B12, iodine, choline, omega-3 and carotenoids. Should I go on? It’s like taking a vitamin. Yes it also contains cholesterol but that is ok! Cholesterol is important for hormone function and it’s a component of every single cell in our bodies. If we are not eating enough cholesterol our body will produce it because it has so many important roles in our body. If you want additional information about the myth of high cholesterol and heart disease, read this post by Chris Masterjohn who has a PhD in Nutritional Sciences with a focus on Biochemical and Molecular Nutrition.

Learn more at www.cholesterol-and-health.com

Some things to think about when purchasing good quality eggs is we want to avoid getting eggs from chickens that have been raised on unnatural feed and kept in inappropriate environments. Chickens are not meant to live cooped up indoors or in cages, they like to roam. They are meant to peck in the dirt and eat grass and bugs. Pastured eggs contain significantly more omega-3, vitamin D, vitamin A, vitamin E and beta carotene than factory farmed eggs.

Egg cartons can be confusing with all of the different marketing claims on them. The following chart will help you understand which claims you want to look for. (Click to enlarge)

egg label education

To sum it up:

1.  Buy local farm eggs when possible. You can also find them in local health food stores like Paradise Organics, Elbert’s, River City Food Coop, Adele’s Naturally.
2.  Stick with organic eggs or eggs from a farm that follows organic practices.
3.  Look for pasture-raised on the carton. It is better than free-range or cage-free.
4.  Do not fall for claims like 100% vegetarian, natural or hormone-free.
5.  Avoid boxed liquid egg substitutes or powdered eggs.

 

Nicole Bobe ~ Registered Dietitian, Fitness Instructor

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