Eggs are one of the most nutrient rich foods available; it’s amazing that a whole egg contains all the nutrients to form a multi-celled organism (chicken) from a single cell! I personally love eating eggs because they are a great source of protein and can be prepared so many different ways while also being the main ingredient in so many different dishes!
Unfortunately, eggs have received negative press previously because of the whole debacle of cholesterol. Egg yolks are packed full of cholesterol; in fact one large egg (50 g) contains 187 mg of cholesterol which is sixty-two percent of the daily recommended cholesterol.
Cholesterol unfortunately has a negative connotation that is undeserved with the belief that ingesting too much cholesterol will cause a sharp increase in cholesterol levels. Fortunately this isn’t the case as the body is a miraculous thing and is able to adapt. Cholesterol is typically produced in the liver but when cholesterol consumption increases, the liver naturally produces less cholesterol causing the total amount in the body to stay relatively consistent.
(Reference 1, 2, & 3).
Studies have also shown there to be a positive effect on the body when consuming more eggs:
- High-Density Lipoprotein (HDL) levels increase – this is the good cholesterol
- Low-Density Lipoprotein (LDL) usually stay consistent but may increase slightly
In fact a few years ago a study stated that eating four eggs a week can actually reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes by more than a third! The study revealed that egg consumption was associated with a lower risk of the disease as well as lowering blood sugar levels. This study consisted of 2,332 men aged between forty-two and sixty and it was found that those who ate at least four eggs per week had a thirty-seven percent lower risk of having diabetes compared to the men who rarely or never ate eggs. Those that did include eggs as a regular part of their diet also showed lower blood sugar levels without seeing a sharp rise in cholesterol levels. Research however says that eating more than four eggs a week did not provide any boost in protection. The study also notes that’s they did not take into consideration how the eggs were cooked however boiling, scrambling, and poaching eggs are considered to be the healthiest options while frying can actually increase cholesterol intake up to fifty percent.
Eggs are a great food choice because they are readily available, affordable and provide a great source of nutrients including high-quality proteins, fatty acids, minerals, and vitamins while also having several bio-active compounds that are known to have anti-inflammatory properties. One of my favorite ways to prepare eggs is by poaching them and I’ve included a quick recipe below.
Simple Poached Egg
1. Bring a pot of water to a boil
2. Add a table spoon of vinegar to the boiling water – this helps to coagulate the egg
3. Stir the water to create a gentle whirpool – this helps the egg white wrap around the yolk
4. Turn off the heat, cover the pan and set a time for 5 minutes allowing the egg to poach
5. Crack open the egg and slowly pour it into the swirling water
6. Remove the egg with a slotted spoon or spatula, serving immediately
Take a look at my main man Alton Brown as he shows use how to properly poach an egg!