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We all have heard varying opinions about eggs - they raise your cholesterol, or maybe they lower it, back and forth. Common research these days believes that the cholesterol found in real foods such as eggs (as opposed to processed foods or powdered eggs) doesn't have a correlation with the "bad" cholesterol in the blood. I'm certainly not a doctor, so if you have concerns about this or other medical issues please talk to your specific doctor.
For the week's Try It Out Tuesday though, we will be trying to incorporate more eggs into our diets. Eggs have a variety of ways that they are good for you, from being a great, cheap source of protein, to having individual amino acids that your body needs.
Eggs contain the amino acid tyrosine, which helps to reduce your appetite and supports the ability of your thyroid, pituitary, and adrenal glands to function properly. They also contain leucine, which is another amino acid, responsible for helping the body to produce human growth hormone, regulate blood sugar levels (very important!) and grow muscles in your body, which helps your overall system to work better. Eggs also contain choline, selenium, B vitamins, vitamin A, vitamin E, and lutein, which help with mental function, memory, preventing birth defects if you are pregnant, cell growth, healthy skin, preventing free radical damage, and preventing macular degeneration.
Where to Buy
The best eggs to eat would ideally be from a farmer that you know, who you know allows his animals to wander around in the yard and eat whatever bugs and everything else they find. Conventional eggs found in the grocery stores usually come from chickens that are fed grains - mostly corn. Since we already have such an overabundance of corn in our diets, this isn't really another source where we need to get more Omega 6 (which is found in corn and corn products, and we have way too much of in our American diets). If you know of a farm or farmer's market where you can get fresh, local eggs, this would be a great option, and have even more nutritional benefits including higher levels of vitamins A and E, more beta carotene, and more Omega 3 fatty acids. In addition to all the nutritional benefits, you would also be supporting a local farmer, which is great for your regional economy.
If you cannot find a local farmer the next best bet would be to buy organic eggs at the grocery store. Organic eggs come from chickens that are fed organic feed, which may very well still be corn but at least it isn't genetically modified, pesticide laden corn. In addition, chickens that lay organic eggs are not given any antibiotics, which is in start contrast to conventional chickens who are often bathed in antibiotics to ward off diseases. For me, this is a big selling point, as I don't want any additional antibiotics in my food or my body that I don't personally need to take care of an ailment. Since they are not given antibiotics, often times (though not always) organic chickens have more room to roam and are treated more humanely than conventional chickens. Overall, if you don't have a local farmer who supplies you eggs, organic eggs from the supermarket can be a good alternative.
Ideas for Incorporating
There are literally an endless number of possibilities for incorporating eggs into your diet, but here are a few of my favorites.
- Breakfast Omelets - a great way to begin your day, keeps your full for hours, and provides a well rounded breakfast
- Hard Boiled Eggs for a snack
- Egg, Tomato, Mozzarella, and Basil Breakfast Sandwich
- Italian Vegetable Casserole
- Egg Custard Pie
Get creative! There are so many easy ways to use eggs, from french toast to hard boiled eggs, that you can incorporate them so easily into your diet. Just this morning for breakfast I had three scrambled eggs with some sauteed onions in them (see another week's Try It Out Tuesday for onion benefits). I look forward to hearing about how all of you added eggs to your diet, and would love it if you would leave me your favorite eggs recipes. Remember that every comment you leave (up to 4) adds another entry in the giveaway! See the giveaway rules for details.
Happy Egg eating!
I'm reading this: Try It Out Tuesday - EggsTweet this! Posted by Lauren on Tuesday, June 01, 2010