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VOL. 36 | NO. 12 | Friday, March 23, 2012

Eggs have benefits, though too many still not a good idea

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There is so much controversy about eggs. Should you eat them? Should you not eat them? Maybe just eat the egg whites? What is the most nutritional way to eat eggs?

Eggs, once considered a cholesterol-culprit, have somewhat been redeemed in recent years as researchers learn more about how certain foods work in our bodies systems. They have re-evaluated the egg and just how nutritious they are for us.

Here is what the article (“The Egg: 7 Diet Facts” in everydayhealth.com) I read has to say about eggs:

1. The egg is a low-calorie powerhouse. “The egg is a great source of nutrition and especially brain food,” says Susan B. Roberts, PhD, author of “The Instinct Diet” and professor of nutrition at the USDA Nutrition Center at Tufts University in Boston. “With only 80 calories per large egg and six grams of protein, it can be scrambled or even fried with just a dab of butter and still come in at under 100 calories.”

2. Eggs have vitamins and other nutrients. Besides providing protein (making you feel full longer), an egg supplies many essential nutrients including vitamin A, the B vitamins B-12, riboflavin and folacin, and the minerals iron, phosphorus and zinc, along with choline and DHA, essential nutrients for brain health.

3. The egg has less cholesterol than we thought. Early tests measured falsely high for the amount of cholesterol in an egg. According to recent research from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, one large egg has 213 milligrams of cholesterol. Testing is also under way to see if that amount can be further reduced.

4. It’s best to eat no more than three or four whole eggs per week, but egg whites have only 15 calories per egg, no cholesterol, and no saturated fat, so people can eat as many as they want. Not only that, egg whites taste better than store-bought egg substitutes.

5. Eggs make a great weekend breakfast. One great role eggs can play is in making weekend food seem special without overdosing on calories. For example, scrambled eggs and whole-wheat toast or a fried egg and Canadian bacon on Sunday morning can become a special breakfast without adding any more calories than a regular weekday cereal meal.

6. Eggs are an inexpensive protein source, very economical and are compared to steak or hamburger.

7. Eggs aren’t only for breakfast; they make a great dinner food. In a few minutes, you can whip up an omelet for a quick dinner when you are too tired to cook or go out. A two-egg omelet with a slice of whole-wheat toast and an apple or orange makes a great meal.

Hopefully, this will clear up any misgivings you had about eggs. Above is a very healthy egg omelet for that nighttime meal!

Provencal Omelet

Cooking spray
2 cups fresh, sliced mushrooms
3 tablespoon scallions
1 clove garlic
4 eggs 
1/4 teaspoon Herbes de Provence
1/8 teaspoon salt
Ground black pepper, to taste
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/4 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
1 tablespoon shredded Asiago cheese
1 medium tomato
Parsley

Lightly coat a 6-7-inch nonstick omelet skillet with cooking spray; preheat over medium heat. Saute mushrooms, green onion, and garlic until tender, stirring frequently. Remove mixture and set aside. Wipe out skillet.
In medium bowl, combine eggs, spices, salt, and pepper. Whisk until combined. Add 1/2 teaspoon of the oil to clean skillet. Preheat over medium heat.
Pour half the egg mixture into skillet. Cook, without stirring, until eggs begin to set. Run a spatula around edge of skillet, lifting eggs, so uncooked portion flows underneath.
Continue cooking until eggs are set but still glossy and moist. Sprinkle with half the mozzarella cheese. Top with half the mushroom mixture. Continue cooking until cheese begins to melt. Using spatula, lift and fold an edge of the omelet partially over filling. Transfer omelet to a warm plate. Prepare second omelet. Top omelets with Asiago or Parmesan cheese, tomato and parsley.

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