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Eggs: How many is too many?

Eggs: How many is too many?

Eggs have long been identified by health experts as being the cause of high cholesterol and heart disease. However, some sources state that egg consumption may do more good than harm which leaves us in a dilemma and sufficiently confused as to whether we should continue to consume eggs or avoid them altogether. This then leads us to the question: How many eggs should we be eating?

A medium-sized egg typically contains 186mg (68% of daily intake) of cholesterol, making it one of the richest sources of cholesterol as a food source especially given the fact that the recommended daily intake of cholesterol should not exceed 300mg. Eggs are also a good, cheap source of protein and an abundant source of vitamins and minerals. Therefore, depriving yourself of eggs could mean denying health benefits that eggs confer! At the same time, eggs contain heart protective properties along with the following benefits:

  • Carotenoids Lutein and Zeaxanthin - protects the eye against inflammation, macular degeneration and cataracts
  • Choline - for good cognitive function
  • Vitamin A -  for healthy skin and clearer vision in low light (ie, prevent night blindness)
  • B Vitamins – for coenzymes that help with metabolism
  • Folate - prevents neural tube defects and prevents risk of Type Two diabetes
  • Monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids - decreases LDL levels (also known as “bad cholesterol”)

For individuals without medical issues, it is fine to consume an egg a day as this does not significantly increase cholesterol, cardiovascular risk or mortality. However this is not to say that we should consume more than that because current research has not gone past this threshold yet hence there is no substantial evidence to suggest that it is alright.

To better our egg consumption, we could pair them up with healthier accompaniments that are low in saturated fat and sugar! In addition to this, we could choose eggs that are omega-3 enriched as these are heart healthy and helps lower our risk of cardiovascular disease and high cholesterol.

Here’s a recipe comprising egg to try:

Smoked salmon with avocado butter on wholemeal toast topped with poached egg

Ingredients:

Wholemeal bread (1 slice)
Smoked salmon (2 slices)
Ripened avocado (1/2)
Omega-3 enriched egg (1)
Lemon juice (1/2- 1 tsp)
Salt (pinch)
Black pepper (Pinch)
Paprika (Pinch) (optional)
Chives (to garnish)

Process

  1. Boil a deep pot of water at high heat, adding a tablespoon of white vinegar. When the water boil, lower the heat till it simmers.
  2. Scoop the avocado out of its rind and place it in a bowl. Mash it with a fork until desired consistency (preferably with chunks for some texture)
  3. Add a pinch of salt, pepper and paprika (optional) to the mashed avocado along with the lemon juice, stirring it so as not to further break it down.
  4. Crack an egg into a bowl
  5. Stir the pot of water in (1) and subsequently lower the bowl near the water, gently pouring the egg in, letting it cook for 1-2 minutes depending on how you like the consistency of the yolk.
  6. Toast the slice of bread

Assembly

  1. Spread half the avocado butter mixture on the toast*
  2. Top it with two slices of smoked salmon
  3. Remove the egg from the pot with a slotted spoon and place it on a paper towel to drain. Once drained, place it on the toast.
  4. Sprinkle with chopped chives to serve.

*You can always keep the other half portion of the avocado butter in the fridge for up to 2 days.  Acid in the lemon prevents the avocado from oxidising and losing its colour. Even if it does lose its colour, it is still edible if the smell does not go off!

Nutrition:

280kcal

17.9g protein, 17g carbohydrate, 16.35g fat, 612mg sodium

Fitness 101
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Eggs: How many is too many?