Eggs are one of my favorite foods. We go through two dozen eggs in my house on a weekly basis between the three of us, and that fits into our diet in a healthy way. But, I know there’s still a lot of confusion over eggs, and rightly so! A recent research study threw eggs back into the media, so I want to help clear up the confusion.
In the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans, it was published that both eggs and shellfish, while higher in cholesterol, can be consumed in a healthy diet along with a variety of other choices within the protein foods group. Also in this publication, the numerical goal for cholesterol was dropped from 300mg to no recommended limit. This was published alongside the recommendation to limit saturated fats, which are more likely to be the responsible party for increasing the bad (LDL) cholesterol in the body than dietary cholesterol. Currently, the link between dietary cholesterol and blood cholesterol is weak. However, many foods that are high in dietary cholesterol are also high in saturated fats, because both forms of fat are found in animal foods such as egg yolk, dairy products, shellfish, meats, and poultry. The research shows that those with lower saturated fat and thus dietary cholesterol in the diet have been linked with a lower risk for heart disease, so you still want to eat with moderation in mind as always. A few foods, notably egg yolks and some shellfish, are higher in dietary cholesterol but not saturated fats, and thus were given the green light to be included as part of a healthy diet, in moderation.
So, it seems to be that about 1 egg per day is where we have netted out for now as the recommendation. Meaning, have your two scrambled eggs for breakfast but maybe not every day. For reference, one large egg has 186mg of cholesterol and about 75 calories, and also packs in a lot of essential vitamins, minerals, and quality protein. While egg whites contain some of the eggs’ high-quality protein and vitamins/minerals like riboflavin and selenium, the majority of the nutrients are found in the yolk. The yolk is rich in vitamin D, choline and the antioxidants, lutein and zeaxanthin. Here’s a little more detail from our friends at the Egg Nutrition Council on what those nutrients do for your body: Vitamin D is critical for bone health and immune function, choline is essential for normal functioning of all cells but particularly important during pregnancy to support healthy brain development of the fetus, and lutein and zeaxanthin are antioxidants that may reduce the risk of developing cataracts and slow the progression of age-related macular degeneration.
We have plenty of eggs to choose from on our site – fresh and pre-hardboiled eggs from our dairy department or prepared hard-boiled egg snacks from our kitchen department. There are so many ways to cook eggs and add them to your dishes. Enjoy!