Nutrients In Eggs

Eggs are a nutrient goldmine!

One large egg has varying amounts of 13 essential vitamins and minerals, high-quality protein, all for 70 calories.

While egg whites contain some of the eggs’ high-quality protein, riboflavin and selenium, the majority of an egg’s nutrient package is found in the yolk. Nutrients such as:

  • Vitamin D, critical for bone health and immune function. Eggs are one of the only foods that naturally contain vitamin D.
  • Choline, essential for normal functioning of all cells, but particularly important during pregnancy to support healthy brain development of the fetus.
  • Lutein and zeaxanthin, antioxidants that are believed to reduce the risk of developing cataracts and slow the progression of age-related macular degeneration, a disease that develops with age.

Filter By Topic

“What’s for Dinner?” Wednesday: Selenium-Rich Souffle

This Wednesday we’re talking about Selenium! It’s a trace mineral that we only need small amounts of; however, the small requirement does not diminish its importance. Selenium is needed to make selenoproteins, which act as antioxidants. It is also important for thyroid health and immune function. Some research has suggested links between selenium consumption and the prevention of other conditions, including cancer and heart disease.

Eggs are an excellent source of selenium. One large egg contains 15.4 micrograms of selenium, or 22% of the Daily Value—most of which is found in the yolk. Other good sources include certain meats, seafood, and nuts. Selenium is also found in plants, but the amount depends on the content of the soil in which the plants are grown. Deficiency isn’t common in healthy people, but has been associated with severe heart and bone disorders as well as congenital hypothyroidism.

Getting your daily dose of selenium is easy and delicious with this recipe for seafood soufflé. It is sure to impress while also providing almost half of the selenium that adults need in a day!

Seafood Souffle

SEAFOOD SOUFFLÉ

Prep Time: 30 minutes

Cook Time: 60 to 70 minutes

Makes: 6 servings

Ingredients:

Fine dry bread crumbs, grated Parmesan cheese OR cornmeal

1/3 cup all-purpose flour

1 tsp. dry mustard

1/2 tsp. salt

1-1/2 cups milk

6 EGG WHITES, room temperature

3/4 tsp. cream of tartar

6 EGG YOLKS

1 can (6.5 oz.) minced clams, drained well

1 pkg. (4 oz.) tiny frozen cooked shrimp, defrosted, drained well

1/2 cup chopped green onions

2 Tbsp. lemon juice

Directions:

1. HEAT oven to 350°F. COAT a lightly greased 2 to 2-1/2-quart soufflé dish evenly and completely with bread crumbs. MAKE a triple thick 4-inch wide band of aluminum foil, long enough to go around the dish and overlap by 2 inches. Lightly GREASE one side of the band and coat with crumbs. WRAP around outside of dish, coated side facing in and extending at least 2 inches above the top. FASTEN with string or strong masking tape. SET ASIDE.

2. MIX flour, mustard and salt in medium saucepan; gradually whisk in milk until smooth. COOK over medium-high heat, stirring constantly, until mixture thickens and boils. Remove from heat.

3. BEAT egg whites and cream of tartar in mixer bowl with whisk attachment on high speed until Stiff Peaks but not dry, just until whites no longer slip when bowl is tilted. STIR egg yolks into reserved sauce until blended. ADD clams, shrimp, green onions and lemon juice; mix well. Gently but thoroughly FOLD yolk mixture into whites until no streaks of white remain. Carefully POUR into prepared soufflé dish. For a “top hat”, hold metal spatula upright and make a ring in top of soufflé mixture, 1 inch from side of dish and 1 inch deep, if desired.

4. BAKE in 350°F oven until soufflé is puffy, delicately browned and shakes slightly when oven rack is moved gently back and forth, 50 to 60 minutes. Quickly but gently REMOVE foil collar. SERVE IMMEDIATELY.

Nutrition Information (per serving):

Calories: 204, Total fat: 7g, Saturated fat: 2g, Polyunsaturated fat: 1g, Monounsaturated fat: 3g, Cholesterol: 233mg, Sodium: 608mg, Carbohydrates: 17g, Dietary fiber: 1g, Protein: 18g, Vitamin A: 490.4IU, Vitamin D: 67.0IU, Folate: 57.4mcg, Calcium: 136.1mg, Iron: 2.3mg, Choline: 129.1mg, Vitamin C: 4.6mg, Vitamin E: 0.8IU, Trans fat: 0g, Sugars: 4g, Potassium: 323.4mg, Magnesium: 18.6mg, Selenium: 22.3mcg

References:

http://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Selenium-HealthProfessional/

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/ency/article/002414.htm

What’s for Dinner Wednesday: The Forgotten B Vitamin

This week we’re talking about riboflavin, also known as vitamin B2 – not a nutrient we usually think much about. Riboflavin shouldn’t be forgotten though, as it’s important for growth, erythropoiesis and carbohydrate metabolism. It can also act as an antioxidant. Although riboflavin deficiency is relatively low in the U.S., it’s important to consume the recommended amount daily, since we don’t store this water-soluble vitamin in our bodies.

Getting enough riboflavin is easily done by consuming a healthy diet. Sources include dairy products, eggs, grains, leafy greens, lean meats and nuts. One large egg contains 0.2 milligrams of riboflavin, which is 12% of the daily value.

With the official start of fall right around the corner, we wanted to help you get ready with a delicious recipe for pumpkin bread. Although this isn’t a dinner recipe, it’s sure to be a crowd pleaser as dessert and combines eggs, flour and nuts – all sources of riboflavin!

Pumpkin Bread
pumpkin bread

Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 60 to 70 minutes
Makes: 1 loaf; 8 servings

Ingredients

• 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
• 1 tsp. baking soda
• 1 tsp. pumpkin pie spice
• 1/4 tsp. baking powder
• 1/2 tsp. salt
• 1/3 c. chopped pecans, toasted
• 1/3 c. raisins or currants
• 1/4 c. butter, softened
• 1 c. sugar
• 3 eggs
• 1 c. canned pumpkin
• 1/4 c. orange juice
• 1/2 tsp. vanilla

Directions

HEAT oven to 350°F. COAT bottom and sides of 9 x5x3-inch loaf pan with cooking spray. COMBINE flour, baking soda, spice, baking powder and salt into medium bowl; set aside. STIR 1 flour tablespoon mixture in the pecans and currants. BEAT butter and sugar in mixer bowl on medium speed until light and fluffy. BEAT in eggs, pumpkin, orange juice and vanilla. Reduce speed to low. ADD dry ingredients; beat until blended. STIR IN pecan and currants. POUR batter into prepared pan. BAKE in 350°F oven until bread begin to pull away from sides of pan and wooden pick inserted in center comes out clean, 60 to 70 minutes. COOL on wire rack. LOOSEN bread from sides of pans with thin knife. Gently SHAKE bread out of pan onto rack.

Nutrition Information (per serving)

Calories: 328, Total fat: 11g, Saturated fat: 5g, Polyunsaturated fat: 2g, Monounsaturated fat: 4g, Cholesterol: 85mg, Sodium: 417mg, Carbohydrates: 53g, Dietary fiber: 2g, Protein: 6g, Vitamin A: 5,051.2IU, Vitamin D: 19.6IU, Folate: 58.5mcg, Calcium: 43.5mg, Iron: 2.2mg, Choline: 57.0mg

Fun Fact Friday: Fire Up the Microwave for Hectic Mornings

Can you believe it’s already the middle of August?  It’s been a busy summer here at ENC! For many moms and dads, the “busy-ness” is just beginning. August is back-to-school month, which brings a new slew of activities.  Some families are already well into hectic school schedules, while others are just starting their back-to-school shopping. Eggs are a great item to add to the shopping list to ensure breakfast does not fall to the wayside when things are a little “scrambled.”

As health professionals, we all know the value of breakfast. Research indicates a protein-rich breakfast promotes satiety, weight control and improved cognitive function. Eggs, which have 6g of protein, are a quick and affordable option that provide children and adults the nutrition needed for everyday functioning and long-term health.  At an average of just 15 cents each, eggs are the most affordable source of high-quality protein and deliver a big nutrient bang for the buck, including nutrients like vitamin D, choline, riboflavin and phosphorous.

What health professionals and families alike may be shocked to learn, though, is that a nutritious egg breakfast can be faster than making a cup of coffee. In fact, IncredibleEgg.org has a variety of fast breakfast recipes, including some great microwave options.

The recipe below clocks in at three minutes and is perfect for on-the go-parents looking to save time in the mornings:

 Coffee cup scramble

MICROWAVE COFFEE CUP SCRAMBLE

Prep Time: 1 minute
Cook Time: 75 to 90 seconds
Makes: 1 serving

Ingredients:

  • 2 EGGS
  • 2 Tbsp. milk
  • 2 Tbsp. shredded Cheddar cheese
  • Salt and pepper

Directions:

  1. COAT 12-oz. microwave-safe coffee mug with cooking spray. ADD eggs and milk; beat until blended.
  2. MICROWAVE on HIGH 45 seconds; stir. MICROWAVE until eggs are almost set, 30 to 45 seconds longer.
  3. TOP with cheese; season with salt and pepper.

 Nutrition Information:

calories: 215, total fat: 15g, saturated fat: 6g, polyunsaturated fat: 2g, monounsaturated fat: 5g, cholesterol: 389mg, sodium: 244mg, carbohydrates: 2g, dietary fiber: 0g, protein: 17g, vitamin A: 739.5IU, vitamin D: 100.3IU, folate: 51.1mcg, calcium: 194.4mg, iron: 1.9mg, choline: 258.4mg 

What’s for Dinner Wednesdays: A Slice of the Sunshine Vitamin

With days growing shorter and fall approaching, it becomes increasingly difficult for many Americans to meet their vitamin D requirements.  Research shows 40 percent of people 65 years of age and older, even those living in sunny climates, are not getting enough vitamin D. So, today’s post focuses on a very “sunny” side of eggs—their natural vitamin D content.

Eggs are one of the few foods that are a naturally good source of vitamin D, which plays an important role in calcium absorption, helping to form and maintain strong bones.  The USDA recently reviewed the egg nutrient data and results show that one Grade A, large egg contains 41 IU of vitamin D, 65 percent higher than the amount reported in the last nutrient analysis. One large egg provides 10 percent of the Daily Value (DV) for vitamin D. Other natural dietary sources of vitamin D include fatty fish and fish oils, beef liver, mushrooms and fortified milk. Some brands of orange juice, margarine and other products can also contain added vitamin D.

Adding more vitamin D, along with high-quality protein and 12 other essential vitamins and minerals is simple with eggs, and below is one of our favorite recipes—Italian Vegetable Custard. This dish is especially perfect for anyone with an abundance of tomatoes and zucchini in their garden this time of year. While one serving (1/4 of the recipe) already provides about 10% of the DV, boost vitamin D content further by adding a half cup of your favorite mushrooms which also naturally contain vitamin D.

 

Italian Vegetable Custard

Makes 4 servings

What You Need

  • 4 EGGS
  • ½ cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 cups coarsely shredded yellow summer squash
  • 1 cup coarsely shredded zucchini
  • 1 can (2.25 oz.) sliced ripe olives, drained, divided
  • 2 Tbsp. grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1 tsp. dried basil leaves
  • ½ tsp. garlic salt
  • 6 very thin tomato slices
  • 1 small onion, thinly sliced, separated into rings
  • ½ cup shredded Monterrey Jack cheese (2 oz.)

Here’s How

  1. HEAT oven to 450°F. BEAT eggs and flour in medium bowl until smooth. ADD yellow squash, zucchini and 1/4 cup olives; mix well. SPREAD in greased 8-inch square baking pan.
  2. BAKE in center of 450°F oven just until custard is set, about 10 minutes.
  3. MIX Parmesan cheese, basil and garlic salt; sprinkle over custard. TOP evenly with tomato, remaining olives, onion and Jack cheese. BAKE until cheese is melted, about 4 minutes.

Nutrition Info (Per Serving)

calories: 237, total fat: 12g, saturated fat: 5g, cholesterol: 201mg, sodium: 424mg, carbohydrates: 19g, dietary fiber: 2g, protein: 14g, vitamin A: 727.9IU, vitamin D: 41.7IU, folate: 83.4mcg, calcium: 110.8mg, iron: 2.6mg, choline: 138.7mg

Fun Fact Friday: Looking Closer at Eggs and Eye Health

Did you know that August is Children’s Eye Health and Safety Month as well as National Cataract Awareness Month? In honor of these eye health observances, we’re taking a closer look at the nutrients lutein and zeaxanthin.

Lutein and zeaxanthin, both members of the carotenoid family, are antioxidants found in egg yolks that are believed to reduce the risk of developing cataracts and slow the progression of age-related macular degeneration, a disease that develops with age, causing blurred or distorted vision and is a leading cause of blindness. While eggs contain small amounts of lutein and zeaxanthin, research shows that these nutrients may be more bioavailable from eggs than that from sources with higher content, including supplements.

Two studies published in the Journal of Nutrition found that consuming one egg a day can significantly increase lutein and zeaxanthin levels in the blood without negatively impacting blood cholesterol or lipid levels. For more information on nutrients related to eye health, check out the American Academy of Ophthalmology’s suggestions for fantastic foods to keep your eyes healthy!

References:

  1. Chung HY, et al. Lutein bioavailability is higher from lutein-enriched eggs than from supplements and spinach in men. JN 2004;134:1887-1893.
  2. Goodrow EF, et al. Consumption of one egg per day increases serum lutein and zeaxanthin concentrations in older adults without altering serum lipid and lipoprotein cholesterol concentrations. JN 2006; 136:2519-2524.
  3. Waters D, et al. Change in plasma lutein after egg consumption is positively associated with plasma cholesterol and lipoprotein size but negatively correlated with body size in postmenopausal women. JN 2007; 137(4):959-63.