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Botanically Speaking

Top 10 Healthiest Foods, #3 - The Incredible Edible Egg

Oh my goodness, here is a food to get excited about. My favorite PROTEIN for price, value, and versatility?  Eggs!

Until recently, you could buy a dozen eggs for about $1.00. That comes out to an incredible $0.083 per serving. But even if you are now paying $3.00 for a dozen eggs, that still comes to only $0.25 each.

If you manage to buy them on sale (watch for sales near Easter time!), you can buy several dozen, freeze them in ice trays and then store them in freezer bags until you need them — just toss them into a bowl, cover, and place in the fridge the night before you plan to use them.

Eggs' Nutritional Profile

Eggs are nutritional giants. That tiny ovoid package is a good source of protein, selenium, iodine, molybdenum, phosphorous, potassium, vitamins B2, B5 and B12, and vitamin D. Eggs also contain vitamin A, as retinol, which is essential to protecting our vision by maintaining a healthy retina in the eye.

Eggs and Eye Health

Two recent studies published in the Journal of Nutrition show even further evidence that a daily egg — whose yolk is a rich source of vision-protective carotenoids, including not only lutein but also zeaxanthin — may reduce the risk of developing age-related macular degeneration (AMD). 

The studies, both conducted at the University of Massachusetts, demonstrate that in addition to keeping hunger at bay longer (eggs' satiety index is 50% greater than that of most breakfast cereals), consuming one egg per day boosts blood levels of both lutein and zeaxanthin, thus reducing the risk of AMD—without increasing cholesterol or triglyceride levels. 

In AMD, the macula, the central part of the retina which controls fine vision, deteriorates, greatly limiting eyesight or even resulting in blindness in those afflicted. AMD is the leading cause of blindness in people over age 50; afflicting more than 10 million people in the United States, plus an additional 15 to 20 million worldwide.

Cholesterol in Eggs

If you still happen to be worried about cholesterol, you should know cholesterol is necessary for communication between the cells in your brain! In fact, the actual make-up of the brain is mostly fat and cholesterol. Personally, it makes me wonder whether the across-the-board limiting of fats and cholesterol in the diet is a contributing factor in much of the brain disease we are witnessing today (but that's a subject for different book!)

Protien Value of Eggs

Eggs have consistently scored highest for quality of protein in comparisons to beef, milk, whey and soy in three of the four scales used to measure protein quality:

  • Protein Efficiency Rating
  • Biological Value 
  • Net Protein Utilization  

Each of the tested proteins received a perfect score in the fourth measure, the Protein Digestibility Corrected Amino Acid Score.  

Eat Your Eggs!

Eggs are full of nutrients which support eye, brain and heart health, and they are one of the best available sources of choline.  Choline is absolutely essential in the diet for supporting brain function, the integrity of cell membranes and heart health.        

Because of choline’s contribution to the phospholipid known as phosphatidylcholine, it is instrumental in maintaining liver and cardiovascular health by preventing the accumulation of excess fat and cholesterol in the liver.  In a single large egg there is an amazing 300 mcg of choline and 315 mg of phosphatidylcholine.             

Eggs are also a good source of lutein and zeaxanthin (215 mcg per jumbo egg), they help with the absorption of carotenoids, and they contain 18% of the Daily Value of vitamin B12, and 29% of the Daily Value of the important trace mineral, selenium.

1 Comment to Top 10 Healthiest Foods, #3 - The Incredible Edible Egg:

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Ronaldinho on Saturday, February 16, 2013 3:56 AM
Hey, Are you like the egg ? Morally I think you have good knowledge about egg. The egg gives us too much protein. It has many useful ingredients. But at this time eggs prices are too increasing.
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