Yes, Eggs are Good for You. Here’s Why! + Healthy Egg Recipes
Eggs are a nutrient-dense food and they are perfectly healthy to include in a balanced diet. In this post, learn about the health benefits of eggs, the nutrients that eggs provide, and tips for including eggs in a healthy diet, all from a Registered Dietitian. Plus, find over ten healthy egg recipes to make, including how to make perfect hard boiled eggs.
Read on to learn about why eggs are healthy, or click the links below to quickly navigate to different sections.
Table of contents
- Are eggs healthy?
- Eggs nutrition & health benefits
- Best eggs to buy
- Healthy egg recipes
Are eggs healthy?
Throughout recent history, eggs have been labeled good, bad, and everything in between. As a Registered Dietitian, I am here to set the record straight about eggs! If you love to eat eggs and egg recipes, fear not, because eggs are actually good for you.
In fact, the FDA just released a new proposed definition of “healthy” food, and eggs meet this new criteria! No matter how you prepare eggs – boiled, fried, poached, or scrambled, they will provide the same valuable nutrients.
Are brown eggs healthier?
No, contrary to what you may have been told, brown eggs are equally as healthy as white eggs. The shell color of an egg has nothing to do with the healthfulness or nutrient composition, just the genetics of the chicken that laid the egg.
Are egg whites healthier?
Egg whites are comprised of mostly water and protein. All of the fat from an egg is in the yolk, therefore egg whites are fat-free, cholesterol-free, and lower in calories than whole eggs.
However, even though it contains fat and cholesterol, the egg yolk contains several beneficial micronutrients like choline, Vitamin A, B Vitamins, Vitamin D, and selenium. Removing the yolk will of course remove these nutrients! Therefore, whole eggs are overall more nutritious than egg whites.
See the comparison between egg white nutrition and whole egg nutrition in the table below:
|One Egg White||One Whole Large Egg|
|Fat||0 grams||5 grams|
|Protein||4 grams||6 grams|
|Cholesterol||0 mg||186 mg|
Eggs nutrition and health benefits
Eggs are packed with nutrients! One large egg provides 72 calories, 0.6 grams of carbohydrate, 6 grams of protein, and 5 grams of fat.
In addition, eggs are a source of several micronutrients. One large egg provides:
- 0.229 mg riboflavin (18 percent of your daily needs)
- 0.45 mcg Vitamin B12 (19 percent of your daily needs)
- 23.5 mcg folate (6 percent of your daily needs)
- 1.00 mcg Vitamin D (5 percent of your daily needs)
- 146.9 mg choline (27 percent of your daily needs)
- 15.35 mcg selenium (28 percent of your daily needs)
While eggs do contain saturated fat, they also have both monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids. These healthy types of fat are linked to heart health benefits, because they can help lower “bad” LDL cholesterol levels.
Eggs are an excellent vegetarian protein source to eat if you follow a plant-based diet. They provide both Vitamin B12 and Vitamin D, both nutrients which are found more abundantly in animal foods than plant foods.
Eggs and cholesterol
Since eggs are high in cholesterol, it was assumed in the past that eggs raise cholesterol levels in our bodies. High cholesterol clogs your arteries, and can lead to heart attack or stroke.
This all being said, we now know that saturated fat in the diet, not cholesterol, has the biggest impact on raising our cholesterol levels.
For most people, eating 1-2 eggs per day will not cause a significant change in cholesterol levels, especially in the context of a varied, well balanced diet. However, those with a history of heart disease, high total or LDL cholesterol, or other metabolic disorders may benefit from limiting whole egg intake and opting for recipes with egg whites.
Best eggs to buy
Take a walk past the egg section in the supermarket, and you will see several designations and labels – certified organic, cage free, free range, pasture-raised, etc. These terms refer to the treatment of the chickens who laid the eggs: what they were fed and the conditions in which they were raised. For example, certified organic eggs came from chickens who were fed a certified organic diet.
Cage free vs free range vs pasture-raised eggs
- Cage free means the hens who laid the eggs are raised in hen houses, so they are not caged up individually. However, these facilities are often packed with hens, and while the are able to move around freely, it is crowded with little space to do so. Hens are not likely to have any access to the outdoors in cage free facilities.
- Free range eggs indicate that the hens laying the eggs are granted some access to the outdoors, but it does not specify the amount of time, quality, and quantity of the outdoor space.
- Pasture-raised eggs come from hens who are given at least 108 feet of space each to roam each day, and are able to feed on grass, bugs, and anything they can forage themselves in addition to chicken feed. There is some research to show that pasture-raised eggs may contain higher levels of Vitamin E and omega-3 fatty acids when compared to eggs from caged hens. Unfortunately, pasture-raised eggs tend to cost a few dollars more than other types of eggs.
If you are able to spend a few extra dollars, I recommend buying pasture-raised eggs at the supermarket when you can. Besides the potential nutrition benefits, they are the best eggs to buy from an animal welfare standpoint, too.
Healthy egg recipes
Find more than ten healthy recipes to make with eggs, below!
Quick & Easy Zucchini Omelette
This zucchini omelette with mozzarella cheese and basil is quick, simple, and delicious. It’s perfect when you are craving a protein-packed breakfast, brunch, or lunch for one. Pair it with your favorite side salad and some toast for a well-balanced meal.
10-Minute Avocado Egg Sandwich
This vegetarian breakfast sandwich is such a delicious way to enjoy avocado. You need just about 10 minutes to prepare the flavorful and healthy fried egg sandwich. This egg sandwich is delicious on a toasted english muffin or your favorite bread!
Healthier Egg Salad Recipe (No Mayo)
This protein-packed healthy egg salad recipe is made with Greek yogurt instead of mayonnaise, so it’s still creamy and delicious! It’s an easy recipe that comes together quickly, and made with a handful of simple ingredients.
Protein-Packed Spinach & Potato Frittata
This fluffy vegetable frittata is a nutritious breakfast, brunch, or lunch dish. It’s cooked in a cast iron skillet on the stovetop and finished off in the oven, and ready in about 30 minutes. You’ll love this protein-packed egg and veggie frittata!
30-Minute Nutritious Broccoli Cheese Frittata
This simple one-pan frittata features nutritious broccoli and two types of cheeses: cheddar and gruyere. Start by cooking it on the stovetop and finishing it in the oven to yield a fluffy vegetable frittata that’s perfect for breakfast, lunch, or dinner!
Healthy & Protein-Packed Smoked Salmon Frittata
This smoked salmon and vegetable frittata is a nutritious and delicious breakfast or brunch recipe. Ready to eat in 45 minutes, you can prepare this protein-packed frittata ahead of time for your next brunch at home!
Mini Frittatas in a Muffin Tin – Five Ways
Mini frittatas baked in a muffin tin are an easy protein-packed breakfast or snack that are ready to eat in under 45 minutes. Try these five different vegetable and cheese flavor combinations. Make a batch ahead of time and store in the fridge for a week of healthy meals!
Asparagus and Leek Frittata with Goat Cheese
This asparagus and leek frittata with goat cheese makes the most delicious healthy brunch! Filled with spring vegetables and tangy goat cheese, everyone will love this light and flavorful frittata. My favorite savory brunch item is a vegetable-packed frittata. Frittatas are easy to make but look and feel impressive. Frittatas are not only delicious, they
Egg White Frittata with Spinach, Tomatoes, and Feta
This veggie-filled egg white frittata recipe is packed with protein but doesn’t compromise on flavor. Baked in the oven, this frittata is easy to prepare and makes a delicious healthy breakfast or brunch dish. This will be your new favorite way to eat egg whites!
Summer Vegetable Shakshuka
This summer vegetable shakshuka is a fresh, flavorful, and super healthy meal! It’s easy to make for any time of day. It’s a great way to celebrate the flavors of fresh summer vegetables.
Banana Bread Blended Baked Oats – Air Fryer
This blended baked oatmeal recipe tastes just like freshly baked banana bread studded with chocolate chunks. Preparing baked oats in the air fryer saves on cooking time – ready in less than 20 minutes!
Eggs are a nutrient-dense food and they are perfectly healthy to include in a balanced diet. In this post, learn about the health benefits of eggs, the nutrients that eggs provide, and tips for including eggs in a healthy diet, all from a Registered Dietitian. Plus, find healthy egg recipes to make, including perfect hard boiled eggs.
- 5 cups of water
- 4 large eggs
- Bring water to a rolling boil in a saucepan.
- Reduce heat so the water is at a more gentle boil.
- Gently lower the eggs into the boiling water using a slotted spoon.
- Boil eggs for 11 minutes.
- Immediately transfer them to a bowl filled with ice water using the slotted spoon.
- Let the eggs cool for at least 5 minutes before peeling.
- To peel hard boiled eggs, roll them along the countertop to create small cracks. Easily peel off the shells.
Keywords: are eggs healthy, how to make hard boiled eggs, eggs and cholesterol