Eggs are one of nature's most nutritious foods. They are a very nutrient-dense food because they provide a significant amount of vitamins and minerals (14 in total), yet only contain 70 calories. Most of the vitamins and minerals in an egg are found in the yolk. A little more than half of the protein is found in the white, and the remainder is in the yolk. The fat (mostly unsaturated fat) and cholesterol are found in the yolk. (Concerned about cholesterol? Check out the latest research on eggs and cholesterol below.) For maximum nutrition and flavour, enjoy the whole egg! These are some of the benefits of eating eggs…... 1. Eggs provide lasting energy and keep you feeling full longer. Including protein-rich eggs in your meals and snacks helps sustain your energy level and curb hunger, cravings and unhealthy snacking. Protein is the most filling nutrient. It helps control the rate at which food energy (calories) is absorbed by your body. A large egg contains 6 grams of the highest quality protein found in any food. Protein is found in both the egg white and the yolk; just over half is in the white and the remainder is found in the yolk. Eat the whole egg to benefit from its full energy potential. Eggs are one of the few foods considered to be a complete protein. A complete protein contains the nine essential amino acids your body cannot produce naturally. Regarded as the “building blocks” of the body, amino acids help form protein and are vital to your body’s health. In addition to supplying energy (calories) for your body to function, protein is essential for building and repairing tissue and keeping your body strong and healthy. Muscles, organs, skin and hair, as well as antibodies, enzymes and hormones are all made from protein. Protein also helps fight infections, keeps body fluids in balance and helps your body maintain a healthy metabolism. 2. Eating eggs can help to control your weight. The protein in eggs can help you lose weight by controlling the rate at which your body absorbs calories. A recent study compared an egg-based breakfast to a bagel-based breakfast, each containing the same number of calories. Those who ate eggs for breakfast consumed 163 fewer calories at lunch, felt less hungry and ate 418 less calories over a 24-hour period.* When managing your weight, choose foods that provide the maximum amount of nutrition for the least amount of calories. Eggs are great nutritional value for those trying to lose or maintain weight. A large egg contains 14 essential nutrients, but just 70 calories. In addition, eggs come portion-packed, making serving size easy to manage. * Layman. Protein Quantity and Quality at Levels above the RDA Improves Adult Weight Loss. J Am Coll Nutr. 2004; 23: 631-636 3. Eating eggs can protect your eyesight. Lutein and zeaxanthin are antioxidants found in egg yolks and are believed to help protect eyes against damage due to ultraviolet radiation from the sun. Research has shown that these antioxidants may be very important in reducing the risk of age-related macular degeneration (the leading cause of blindness in people over age 65) as well as the risk of cataracts. Those who ate eggs daily were less likely to have cataracts than those who consumed eggs less often.* * Moeller et al. Journal of the American College of Nutrition 2000; (915s): 523s-527s 4. Eating eggs can stimulate brain development. Eggs give us brainpower. Choline, a substance found in egg yolks, stimulates brain development and function. Choline has been recognized as an essential nutrient by Health Canada. Since it is necessary for good health, but is not produced by our body in adequate amounts, a continuous new supply must be provided by our diet. Two large eggs provide an adult with the recommended daily intake of choline. 5. Eating eggs can improve concentration. Good nutrition affects a child’s ability to learn. Research* has shown that eating a well-balanced breakfast can improve a child’s: concentration level and attention span math and reading skills behaviour attendance, and test scores Starting the day with a healthy breakfast that includes eggs gives you and your family a nutritious start to the day. This is because nearly all the essential nutrients your body needs can be found in an egg. Eggs are packed with 14 essential nutrients that you and your family need to stay healthy and active. Plus, one large egg contains just 5 grams of fat and only 70 calories. (* Minnesota Department of Children, Families and Learning. School breakfast programs energizing the classroom. 1998.) What about eggs, cholesterol and heart health? The latest research shows no significant link between eating eggs and developing cardiovascular disease in healthy individuals. In fact, limiting dietary cholesterol (e.g. avoiding eggs) could lead to an unbalanced intake of nutrients, which increases the risk for other health problems. Research also shows that saturated and trans fats raise blood cholesterol levels (not the cholesterol found in our food). Eggs contain very little saturated fat and no trans fats. As long as eggs are eaten as part of a healthy, well-balanced diet and lifestyle, there is no maximum number of eggs the average healthy person can eat. Individuals with elevated blood cholesterol should speak to a registered dietitian or their doctor for diet advice. They should still be able to include eggs in their diet.