Eggs have always been right up there, in the fitness industry, as a recommended protein source. However over the past 10 - 20 years they have been given a bit of a bad rap as being a food that is high in cholesterol. Because of this many people avoid them, or only eat the whites and discard the yolk. This is because the egg white is high in protein yet contains no cholesterol and very little fat. But nutritionists and dieticians have now realised that not only does egg yolk contain many beneficial nutrients (they contain a small amount of almost all the essential nutrients!), the cholesterol it contains has little to no impact on your body’s blood cholesterol levels.
So here are a few reasons why I think eggs are egg-citing!
Good Cholesterol - It is true that eggs are high in cholesterol, however studies show that having cholesterol in your diet has significantly less of an impact on your blood cholesterol levels than eating foods high in saturated and trans fats.
In fact for the average healthy person eating eggs will have little to no impact on your blood cholesterol levels. This is because of the way LDL and HDL cholesterol interact with each other.
- LDL - Low Density Lipoprotein cholesterol is often referred to as the ‘bad cholesterol’
- HDL - High Density Lipoprotein cholesterol is often referred to as the ‘good cholesterol’
Both types of cholesterol are responsible for transporting the different fat molecules around the body, however only LDL can transport it to arterial walls and here it can accumulate and form plaque build up, which can eventually lead to heart disease. This is where HDL gets its ‘good’ name from, because part of its role is to remove any fat molecule build up from the arterial walls. Eating eggs will increase your HDL levels, So unless you have diabetes then eating up to 7 eggs a week should not have a negative impact upon your blood cholesterol levels.
Packed Full Of Nutrients - I’ve said it before, and I will say it again: eggs are a superfood! They are an excellent source of protein as well as containing a range of other essential nutrients, including:
- Vitamin A
- Vitamin B2, B5, B6 & B12
- Vitamin D
- Vitamin E
- Vitamin K
Great Source Of Good Fats - The whole of an egg is an excellent source of good fats which are not only essential to a healthy balanced diet, but will also help you feel fuller for longer! This is why having poached eggs for brekkie can help you curb your cravings for calories later in the day!
Of course like everything moderation is key! But if you like nice omelettes for breakfast, or some scrambled eggs, then don’t discard all your egg yolks. Keep a couple in and reap the nutritional benefits they provide!