An Egg Meister
Yes, I know. I’ve talked about eggs before. I’ve talked about raising chickens also. Why? Because eggs have been given a bum rap! But, they are making a comeback because people are getting wiser.
People have thrived on eggs for as long as we’ve been here. That is, until the 1950s, when they came under attack because they’re high in cholesterol. Around that time, cholesterol was blamed for causing heart disease.
Now we know that’s not true. Cholesterol doesn’t cause heart disease. And eggs don’t cause heart disease. In fact, a study from Harvard followed 118,000 men and women for 14 years. It found no link between eating eggs and the risk of heart disease or stroke.(1) To make matter worse, another study of almost 600,000 people found that eating one egg a day actually lowered the risk of stroke by 12%.(2)
What’s the Skinny?
One South American body builder ate 18 eggs a day for many years. When examined, he had 4% body fat and no heart disease at all. The truth is there is zero scientific proof that eggs are unhealthy for your heart. Just the opposite… eggs are one of the most perfect foods for humans.
They are an excellent source of highly absorbable protein with every amino acid you need in exactly the ratio you need it. You can also digest the protein from eggs better than meat, fish or any other food you eat.
They are called, “nature’s vitamin pills.” Why? They have every vitamin you need: Bs, C, and the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E and K that are so hard to come by in the modern world.
What Kind of Eggs?
Don’t buy just any eggs. Most supermarket eggs come from factory-farmed chickens. They are raised in filthy huts with hundreds of cages stacked as many as two stories high. Chickens raised in those conditions are 25 times more likely to become contaminated with salmonella than free-roaming chickens.(3)
And factory eggs are much less nutritious than eggs from hens that roam free. Pastured eggs can have as much as:
- 65% fewer carbs than a regular egg
- 10% more protein
- 20% more iron
- 72% more vitamin A
- 211% more of the vision-sharpening carotenoids called lutein and zeaxanthin
- 319% more healthy omega-3s
- 1,664% more calcium
How to Find Good Eggs
- Look for eggs labeled “Pastured” or “Pasture Raised.” They have much higher nutrient levels and less chance of passing along disease.
Pastured chickens live on small farms where they run around freely. Each day they’re herded in small groups to fresh pastureland. They have fresh greens to eat and a clean environment. These chickens have plenty of space, sunshine and a natural diet to eat.
- No “Free Range” eggs. They are different from “pastured”. You are usually paying more for nothing because the USDA allows a “free-range” label if the chicken coop has a door to the outside. But that doesn’t mean the chickens actually ever see the light of day.
- If you can’t find pastured eggs, my second choice is organic. Organic eggs come from cage-free hens fed organic, vegetarian feed. Neither the hens nor their feed are subjected to antibiotics, hormones or pesticides. Why second choice? Because they are not much different than pastured but much more money.
- Help! To find pastured eggs from a local farmer or farmer’s market near you, check out www.LocalHarvest.org.
- Hu FB, Stampfer MJ., et al. “A prospective study of egg consumption and risk of cardiovascular disease in men and women.” JAMA. 1999 Apr 21;281(15):1387-94.
- Sylvia Booth Hubbard. “Eggs Reduce Stroke Risk.” Newsmax Health; November 1, 2016.
- “Report of the Task Force on Zoonoses Data Collection on the Analysis of the baseline study on the prevalence of Salmonella in holdings of laying hen flocks of Gallus gallus” EFSA.2007 Feb.