The below article was issued for the South African Poultry Association (SAPA) by Protactic Strategic Communications
- Eggs help the immune system.
Fighting like soldiers on a battlefield, our immune system is the body’s defence against invading viruses, bacteria, and other illness-causing pathogens. Eggs are high in vitamin A and selenium, important nutrients for normal immune function.
- Eggs are good for the eyes.
Egg yolks are good for the eyes as this is the part of the egg that has lutein and zeaxanthin. These nutrients have been shown to lower the risk of cataracts and macular degeneration, the leading cause of blindness in older people.
- Eggs are good for the heart.
While eggs do contain cholesterol, eating eggs will not necessarily raise your cholesterol. Compared to non-egg eaters, those who eat eggs daily have a lower risk of heart disease and stroke, and also a lower risk of dying from these conditions, too.
- Eggs are good for muscle building.
When combined with resistance (weight) training, protein provides the building blocks for muscle building and repair. Eggs are a source of high-quality protein: one large egg contains 7g of protein. In fact, eating whole eggs immediately after resistance exercise results in better muscle building than if just eating the egg white.
- Eat the whole egg, not just the white.
While the egg white contains protein, selenium and the B-vitamin riboflavin, there is a lot of nutrition in the egg yolk. The egg yolk contains heart healthy fats (monounsaturated fats) and half of the protein of the whole egg. If you avoid eating the egg yolk, you’re missing out on vitamin D and iron, too.
- Eggs help vegetarians meet their nutrient needs.
Plant-based eating like vegetarianism is on the rise. Vegetarians are encouraged to supplement their diets with vitamin B12. One large egg contains almost 44% of our B12 needs and is high in protein to meet these nutrient needs.
- Eggs are good as part of an energy-restricted diet.
Eating an omelette at lunch could help you feel fuller and even have you eating less at the next meal, according to a 2011 study.
- Eggs are good to eat during pregnancy.
A vital nutrient for pregnant women is choline, which plays a key role in the development of a baby’s brain and nervous system. Eggs contain choline, making eggs a good choice as part of a healthy diet during pregnancy.
- Eggs can help our young children to grow.
An American study reported that early introduction of eggs to the diets of children 6 – 9 months significantly improved their growth. In a country with high rates of malnutrition, eggs have the potential to contribute to both local and global goals to reduce stunting.
- Eggs are versatile and store well.
Scrambled for breakfast, quiche for lunch, frittata for dinner or boiled as snack, eggs can be eaten at any time of the day and in so many forms. Eggs also store well in our pantries or fridges.
- Eggs are good because they’re a cost-effective food.
Compared to other protein sources like meat, chicken and fish, eggs are relatively well-priced and offer an affordable source of protein.
- Eggs are good to eat every day.
The Department of Health’s dietary guidelines for South Africans support that we can eat eggs every day in moderation.
- Agnoli, C. et al., 2017. Position paper on vegetarian diets from the working group of the Italian Society of Human Nutrition. Nutrition, Metabolism & Cardiovascular Diseases. 27, 1037-1052.
- Gopinath, B. et al., 2020. Consumption of eggs and the 15-year incidence of age-related macular degeneration. Clinical Nutrition. 39(2), 580-584.
- Ianotti, L.L. et al., 2017. Eggs in Early Complementary Feeding and Child Growth: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Pediatrics. 140(1): e20163459.
- Jian, X. et al., 2014. Maternal choline supplementation: a nutritional approach for improving offspring health?Trends in Endocrinology & Metabolism. 25(5), 263-273.
- Manayi, A. et al., 2016. Lutein and cataract: from bench to bedside. Crit Rev Biotechnol. 36(5), 829-39.
- Mares, J., 2016. Lutein and Zeaxanthin Isomers in Eye Health and Disease. Annual Review of Nutrition. 36, 571-602.
- Pombo-Rodrigues, S. et al., 2011. The effects of consuming eggs for lunch on satiety and subsequent food intake. International Journal of Food Sciences and Nutrition. 62(6), 593-9.
- Qin, C. et al., 2018. Associations of egg consumption with cardiovascular disease in a cohort study of 0.5 million Chinese adults. Heart. 0, 1-8.
- Schonfelt, H.C. et al., 2013. “Fish, chicken, lean meat and eggs can be eaten daily”: a food-based dietary guideline for South Africa. SAJCN. 26(S), S66-S76.
- Vliet, S. et al., 2017. Consumption of whole eggs promotes greater stimulation of post exercise muscle protein synthesis than consumption of isonitrogenous amounts of egg whites in young men. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 106, 1401–12.