Are eggs really a superfood?

Are eggs healthy or unhealthy?

// by Nico Richter // 30 comments

When it comes to eggs, there is often a lot of confusion: are they actually healthy or unhealthy? How about eggs and my cholesterol levels? What do I have to pay attention to so that I do not ingest any residues from antibiotics or genetic engineering through eggs?

This article aims to clarify these and other questions. You will learn why eggs are actually very healthy, what to look for when buying eggs and how you can best integrate eggs into your diet.

Eggs - the forgotten superfood

Scientists and marketing departments put a new food with supposed miraculous powers in front of our noses at regular intervals: pomegranate, algae, something new always pops up somewhere. One of the best superfoods But we have known - in the truest sense of the word - since ancient times: the egg.

The cholesterol misunderstanding

In the past few decades, the egg has fallen into disrepute - wrongly, as scientists are now discovering again. For a long time, nutrition experts thought that consuming eggs would have negative effects on our cholesterol levels. In fact, the opposite is the case: as part of a healthy diet Eggs even have a positive effect on our cholesterol. You can find out more about this in our article on paleo diet and cholesterol.

Eggs are healthy!

A look at the nutritional values ​​shows why eggs are so healthy: a single egg contains 13 nutrients that are essential for humans. Hardly any other food is so rich. A small excerpt:

  • of course they provide us with Protein - which is also extremely usable because eggs all 9 essential amino acids contain
  • Eggs are also a source healthy fats and contain the important ones Omega-3 fatty acids
  • Vitamin A, important for growth and our eyes, among other things
  • all B vitamins, included Choline, which is essential for the brain metabolism and of which even most people in industrialized countries do not consume sufficient amounts
  • Eggs are one of the few foods that do natural vitamin D. that we need for the absorption of minerals
  • Vitamin E., the important antioxidant that protects us from many diseases such as cancer and Alzheimer's

This list goes on, but we already see: If you have enough eggs, you can save yourself any multivitamin tablet! And since an egg has barely 70 calories and only contains 0.5g of carbohydrates, we can rightly say that eggs are one of the secret super weapons of the paleo diet (and low carb diet). So many concentrated nutrients are hard to find anywhere else!

Keep your eyes peeled when buying eggs: organic free-range eggs are best

And eggs are also hard to beat when it comes to the price / performance ratio. But be careful: Not all eggs are the same! As with meat, how the animals are kept and fed is also important with eggs. Industrial factory farming in cages and fed soy scrap are of course not a good basis for healthy ingredients. A US study compared conventional cage eggs with free range eggs and the results speak for themselves. Free range eggs contain:

  • 1/3 less cholesterol
  • 1/4 less saturated fat
  • 2/3 more vitamin A.
  • twice as many omega-3 fatty acids
  • only a fraction of omega-6 fatty acids
  • 7 times as much beta-carotene

So should we buy free range eggs? Jain. Because organic is even better: In the European Union, the origin and quality characteristics for eggs are uniformly regulated. Free-range eggs guarantee that the chickens are not kept in cages, but in stalls and with free range. However, there are no feed regulations for free-range eggs.

The organic seal also guarantees free-range farming, but also ecological feed without the addition of antibiotics and genetic engineering. This is important because many substances accumulate in the eggs that the chicken ingests through food.

So if you want to make sure that you get the maximum benefit from all of the healthy properties, you should definitely make sure to buy organic eggs.

How many eggs can I eat?

We don't know about you, but many “paleos” could easily eat eggs for breakfast every day. Or lunch. Or in the evening. One of the great things about eggs is theirs versatility.

And the good news is: From a scientific point of view, nothing speaks against eating several eggs a day. In several studies it was examined how the consumption of up to three eggs per day over a longer period of time affects the blood values ​​of the participants. It found that when compared to the control group who did not eat eggs, the blood counts were better across the board. This was especially true for the cholesterol levels and antioxidants: In 70% of egg eaters the HDL (“good cholesterol”) rose, in the other 30% the “bad cholesterol” sd-LDL was converted into the better lb-LDL.

From a scientific point of view, there are no reasons to limit our egg consumption. On the contrary: An egg diet is definitely healthier than not eating eggs.

With up to three eggs per day, as the study mentioned above shows, we are definitely on the safe side. And just because there is no study on this does not mean that 4 or 5 eggs are unhealthy. As is so often the case here, too: every organism is different. Try it out and listen to your body.

What if I don't like eggs?

One or the other may not like the taste of eggs and therefore prefer to forego the classic scrambled eggs with bacon breakfast. No problem, eggs are so versatile that you can "hide" them in your food in order to still get the healthy nutrients. A few ideas:

  • Eggs in Smoothie: Even Rocky Balboa knew about the superpower of eggs and drank an egg shake every morning. Granted, raw eggs aren't our thing either - but why not throw one or two hard- or soft-boiled eggs into the fruit or vegetable smoothie? The unloved taste of eggs is guaranteed to disappear between the aromas of berries, spinach, ginger and co. For example in the Paleo Protein Shake.
  • Eggs atto bake: Most baking recipes use eggs because they bind the dough and give it structure. Try our sheet fruit cake, for example
  • Also for that breakfast there are alternatives: you can't go wrong with breakfast muffins, and you won't notice the egg taste in our avocado muffins with bacon

Paleo for vegetarians - eggs make it possible

Vegetarians in particular who want to eat paleo are often faced with the question of how to get the essential nutrients contained in meat and fish. Even if not completely identical, eggs offer the possibility of taking in many important proteins, fats and vitamins and still avoiding meat (or reducing meat consumption).

Conclusion - eggs are good, organic free-range eggs are even better

Wilhelm Busch once wrote: "Everyone knows that, whoever it is, // the egg is healthy and invigorating.“And he was right! Hardly any other food is so rich in important nutrients and so versatile and inexpensive. As long as you make sure to buy organic free-range eggs, you are right with eggs. We think: As a true superfood, eggs are part of a healthy paleo diet!

Still, there are some people who have an intolerance to eggs. No problem - we have loads of egg-free recipes ready. In order to test whether you can tolerate eggs or not, it may be advisable to try a nutritional phase according to the autoimmune protocol (AIP). It is probably generally advisable every now and then to omit and reintroduce foods - including eggs - while changing habits and discovering new and different foods. Especially if you have already been diagnosed with an autoimmune disease, it can be useful to identify food intolerances.

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Tags: Paleo Diet Basics

Written by Nico

With Paleo360, Nico has fulfilled his dream of turning his passion into a profession. In his everyday life a lot revolves around health and fitness. And since he is also a connoisseur, cooking must of course not be neglected. Whenever possible, he spends a lot of time hiking and mountaineering in the nearby Alps.
Read more articles by Nico