When it comes to big reputations, bad and good, the humble egg has seen it all over the past half a century.
We’ve gone from footage of Mr. Universe types cracking a dozen into his milkshake to mortal fear of eggs’ alleged cholesterol-increasing powers, to somewhere between the two. So, what are we to think about eggs right now?
“Eggs are a tasty and nutritious option if you are active,” says advanced sports dietician Lisa Middleton.
Still, it can be easy to panic, given what we think we know about eggs (or what someone from work has told us in the kitchen) when your meal plan seems to feature a whole lot of the little guys. Centr’s vegetarian and pescatarian meal plans, and our snacks, readily feature eggs, often three or four servings a week. So, should you be sweating in front of the free-range cartons?
No way. We’re here to tell you it’s okay to love eggs again.
They’re safe to eat daily
When we say “daily,” we don’t mean the aforementioned six-egg smoothie, but at least one egg a day (or thereabouts) is fine. The American Heart Association says one egg (or two whites) a day, as part of a healthy and balanced diet, is a-OK.
They include good vitamins and minerals
Eggs contain lots of nutrients, among them vitamin D (which aids bone health and the immune system) and choline (which helps metabolism and liver function). “Egg yolks are rich in minerals and important fat-soluble vitamins, which are often lacking for people who keep to a low-fat way of eating,” Lisa says.
They’re not necessarily a cholesterol bomb
Yes, eggs do contain cholesterol – about 186 mg of it. But if your diet is lower in cholesterol in general – say, if you don’t eat red meat, bacon, or sausage, then you can afford to include eggs in your diet. If you’re really concerned, or you know you have high cholesterol, just remember: moderation is key. “If your cholesterol is on the edge you may need to be careful beyond six yolks per week,” says Lisa. “But current research shows that eggs can be enjoyed regularly.” In fact, there’s increasing evidence that the cholesterol in food isn’t what affects the “bad” cholesterol in your body, according to the Cleveland Clinic.
Strapped for time? A hard-boiled egg is a high-protein snack in its own, plus it naturally comes in a low-waste wrapper. If you want to go even lower waste and if Centr’s farm-to-table experts have got you excited about home growing, crush up the eggshells and sprinkle them on garden dirt. The little white flakes will deter cabbage moths and give your plants a calcium boost.
They’re high in protein
Ever wondered why ripped celebrities and shredded athletes are always going on about egg white omelets? “For an active person, eggs are one of the highest biological value proteins you will find,” Lisa says. “The egg white is practically pure protein, but don’t neglect the yolks for their nutritional value.” So, next time there’s a frittata in your meal plan, don’t panic. Think of the gains.
Get Chris Hemsworth's team of the world's best trainers, chefs and well-being experts in your corner.