Wellness Tip of the Week: Cholesterol & Eggs
Story by Wellness Director Chelsea Salisbury
Eggs are one of the most nutritious foods on the planet! The WHOLE egg has all the nutrients needed to create a baby chicken! The bad rap of eggs comes from the yolk with about half of your daily allotment of cholesterol. However, without the yolk you are not getting all the other essential nutrients – the reason to eat the egg in the first place! 1 egg = 1 oz of red meat for protein (about 6 grams).
Cholesterol is often seen as a negative word, associated with heart disease. Some believe that if you eat cholesterol that you will raise your blood cholesterol. It is not that simple – the more you eat cholesterol the less your body naturally produces in the liver. Cholesterol is actually a very important part of our bodies. In fact, it is needed for every cell membrane. It is also used to make testosterone, estrogen and cortisol hormones.
So, how much should we eat? Common recommendations are 2-6 yolks per week – although there isn’t much scientific data to support this. Research has shown though that HDL (good cholesterol) increases, the Omega-3 eggs can lower blood triglycerides and important antioxidants increase significantly with eggs in a diet. Eggs also have fat emulsifiers. These are needed to assist digestion of fat in the body. VISUAL: Think of a cup of water (you intestines) and add a cup of fat to it… what happens? Fat will clump together and form a large mass apart from the water, creating a blockage in your digestive track. Naturally our body creates bile to prevent this for the most part. With the addition of emulsifiers into our diet, like ones found in eggs, fat in water distributes evenly, preventing clumps and easing digestion; decreasing the strain on your liver to produce bile.