EGGS! Nature’s Nutrient Wonder

EGGS! Nature’s Nutrient Wonder

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Packed with goodness, eggs provide a variety of benefits

eggHave you ever noticed that, come Easter, eggs seem to pop up everywhere? We dye them, we decorate them, we hide them and we hunt for them. We like to stuff them into baskets (chocolate eggs, but still), and then there’s the whole egg-rolling-race thing involving hard-boiled eggs, grass and long-handled spoons. Versatile little things, aren’t they?

“Bottom line is eat your eggs. You can’t go wrong.”

Let’s not forget what else we could be doing with eggs: actually eating them! Not only do they taste great, but they’re packed with nutrition as well.

“Eggs really are nature’s most nutrient-dense food,” explains Dietary Technician Beth Castle. “There are over 14 nutrients in an egg. If you compare that to chicken, which has eight nutrients, you can see just how healthy they are.

“Not only do they have choline, which helps with brain development and function, they also have vitamin D, folate and iron—nutrients that are hard to get from other foods.”

Each large Grade A egg also contains six grams of protein. And because eggs contain all nine essential amino acids, which your body needs to build protein. They are one of the few foods that are a complete protein—all for only 70 calories each.

Don’t be fooled into thinking the white has all of that protein, though.

“If you’re throwing the yolk out, you’re missing out big time. That’s where most of the egg’s nutrients are, including almost half of the protein.”

Eggs have received some bad publicity in the past due to the amount of cholesterol they contain, but recent studies have shown eating an egg a day is perfectly okay.

“It doesn’t increase your risk of heart disease. Dietary cholesterol has little effect on blood cholesterol,” says Castle. “People often tell me, ‘My grandparents ate eggs every day and they lived into their eighties or nineties.’ Be wary of fads and use common sense.

“It sounds like a broken record, but when it comes to your overall diet, it really is about moderation and going back to basics.”

Also, when you pick up a dozen eggs, whether it’s at the farmers’ market, or your local supermarket, you’re also supporting local Alberta farmers.

“Not only do our eggs come from family-run farms, but they’re super fresh. Most are just four to seven days old, and some are as little as two days old.

“Eggs are used in so many different things, everything from muffins to meatloaf to coating for fish and chicken. And at around 23 cents an egg, where else can you find such a nutrient-dense food that has so many uses?

“Really, the bottom line is eat your eggs. You can’t go wrong.”

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Mediterranean Crustless Quiche

Photo supplied by Taste Alberta
Photo supplied by Taste Alberta

Enjoy spring with healthy and delicious zucchini quiche

Serve quiche with a mesclun salad tossed with balsamic vinaigrette

Preparation: 15 minutes  | Cooking: 35 to 40 minutes  | Servings: 6

Ingredients:

1 tbsp olive oil

3 cups thinly sliced zucchini

1 cup chopped onion

1 clove garlic, minced

3 ½ ounces goat cheese, crumbled

¼ cup pitted Kalamata olives, halved (optional)

3 tbsp minced soft sun-dried tomoatoes

5 eggs

¾ cup 2% milk

½ tsp dried basic (or 1 tbsp of chopped fresh basil)

Cooking spray

Salt, pepper to taste

Directions:

1. Heat oil in large non-stick skillet over medium heat.

2. Add zucchini, onion and garlic; cook, stirring until golden brown and soft, about six minutes.

3. Transfer mixture to 9-inch glass pie plate sprayed with cooking spray.

4. Sprinkle with goat cheese, sun-dried tomatoes and olives.

5. Whisk together eggs, milk and basil in large bowl. Season with salt and pepper.

6. Pour egg mixture over zucchini mixture.

7. Bake in preheated 350°F oven until set in centre, about 35 to 40 minutes.

Nutrients per serving:

Calories: 190

Protein: 12 g

Carbohydrate: 7 g

Dietary Fibre: 2 g

Fat: 13 g

 

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