Let’s Crack Into that Egg

One of the best sources of protein you can find is in an egg. Less than 10% of the egg is fat and is concentrated in the yolk. So, it’s strange that eggs got the bad rap as being “unhealthy” for a while during the big “fat is your biggest enemy” scare derived by studies paid for by the sugar industry.

Eggs actually lower “bad” cholesterol levels. Their nutritional contents can increase cognitive function, protect your heart, prevent eye diseases, detoxify the body, help with weight loss, and ensure proper growth and development in children.

Studies show eggs protect against strokes and improve heart health by increasing the “good cholesterol” (HDL cholesterol) and eliminating “bad cholesterol” (LDL) by lowering blood triglyceride levels that help to avoid atherosclerosis, blood clots, strokes, heart attacks, and other serious cardiovascular conditions.

The white part of the egg is called the albumen and the yellow part is the yolk. The albumen mostly contains water and proteins, while the yolk contains most of the vitamins and minerals, including vitamins A, B-complex, D, E and K, as well as phosphorous, selenium, calcium, and zinc. Eggs are also loaded with key organic compounds, such as omega-3s and other antioxidants like lutein, and zeaxanthin.

Here are some of the biggest benefits of the egg:

• The protein in eggs help regulate muscle functions and slows down muscle loss.
• The nutrients in eggs feed the cells in the brain and nervous system, improving memory, and maintaining a functioning metabolism.
• An egg contains most of the daily vitamins and minerals that are required to produce energy in every cell of the body.
• The Vitamin A, vitamin B-12, and selenium in eggs help keep the immune system healthy.
• The choline in eggs break down the amino acid homocysteine, which is associated with the development of heart disease and assist in liver function and brain development.
• The lutein and zeaxanthin in eggs help to prevent macular degeneration, that causes age-related blindness.
• The protein in eggs help keep you energized and feeling fuller for longer, reducing need for caloric intake and helping with weight loss.
• Minerals like iodine, and selenium, in eggs keep our antioxidant levels up and maintains healthy hormonal functioning in our thyroid.
• Eggs contain naturally occurring carotenoids that boost the immune system and fight off chronic illnesses.

Most eggs consumed come from chickens, and there are big differences when it comes to cage-raised and free-range eggs. Free-range eggs contain less cholesterol, less saturated fat, more vitamin A, more omega-3, more vitamin E and more beta-carotene than regular eggs. Free-range eggs are also 98 percent less likely to carry salmonella.

About two percent of children in the U.S. develop allergies to eggs and egg products. Those at risk for cardiovascular disease, who have diabetes or who take choline supplements should consult their physicians on the appropriate amounts of eggs to consume. Otherwise, feel free to crack that egg and reap the many nutritional benefits they provide.

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