By Shannon Crocker, MSc, RD, www.shannoncrocker.ca
Don’t skip the yolk!
Creamy, soft poached eggs with whole grain toast and a hot, frothy latte—that’s what my breakfast dreams are made of.
If you love egg yolks as much as I do, then you’ll be happy to know that there is plenty of scientific evidence that they’re super-nutritious.
Here are five fantastic reasons to eat the yolks:
- Most of an egg’s nutrients are in the yolk. The yolk is packed with good-for-you nutrients including protein, essential fatty acids, vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Egg yolks are also one of the few natural food sources of vitamin D.
- Half of an egg’s protein is in its yolk. Two whole eggs provide you with 12 grams of protein. Recent research shows that we build more lean muscle and boost muscle strength more when we eat whole eggs instead of just the egg whites.
- Egg yolks contain two antioxidants that are important for eye health: lutein and zeaxanthin. They’re highly available in egg yolks, meaning that your body will absorb them easily. Studies have shown that both antioxidants may reduce the risk of macular degeneration, which contributes to vision loss as we age.
- Egg yolks are one of the best food sources of choline, a B vitamin that is vital for brain development and function.
- Eggs can boost the nutritional value of the veggies on your plate. That’s because the yolks help you absorb some of their nutrients, such as the vitamin E in spinach and beta-carotene in carrots.
Go ahead, enjoy that (whole) egg!
Eggs give you a whole lot of goodness. When you eat the whole egg, you get the whole package of health-boosting nutrients. So eat don’t skip the yolk!
Vishwanathan, R.; Goodrow-Kotyla, E.F.; et al. Consumption of 2 and 4 egg yolks/d for 5 wk increases macular pigment concentrations in older adults with low macular pigment taking cholesterol-lowering statins. Am J Clin Nutr 90(5):1272–9, 2009.
Aljohi, H.; Nelson, M.D.; et al. Consumption of 12 eggs per week for 1 year significantly raises serum zeaxanthin levels and improves glare recovery in patients with early age-related macular degeneration. J Clin Res Opthalmol 4(1):14–21, 2017.
Zeisel SH. Choline: Critical role during fetal development and dietary requirements in adults. Ann Rev Nutr 26:229-50, 2006.
Ylilauri, MP; Voutilainen, S; et al. Association of dietary cholesterol and egg intakes with the risk of incident dementia or Alzheimer disease: the Kuopio Ischaemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study. Am J Clin Nutr 105:476-484, 2017.
van Vilet, S; Shy, EL et al. Consumption of whole eggs promotes greater stimulation of postexercise muscle protein synthesis than consumption of isonitrogenous amounts of egg whites in young men. Am J Clin Nutr 106(6):1401-1412, 2017.
Kim, JE; Ferruzzi, MG; Campbell, WW. Egg Consumption Increases Vitamin E Absorption from Co-Consumed Raw Mixed Vegetables in Healthy Young Men. J Nutri 146(11):2199-2205, 2016.
Kim, JE; Gordon, SL; et al. Effects of egg consumption on carotenoid absorption from co-consumed, raw vegetables. Am J Clin Nutr 102(1): 75-83, 2015.