The U.S. government is poised to withdraw longstanding warnings about cholesterol and this means that eggs are making a serious comeback.
We asked our Registered Dietician from HELP: Harmony Eating & Lifestyle Program to tell us a little more about how this superfood can benefit our kids.
Health benefits of Eggs for children:
It’s a Super food!
- One of the most nutrient dense foods that you can buy and inexpensive
- High in Protein-contains all the essential amino acids that are essential for growth especially in young children and adolescents. Its protein quality is only second to breast milk
1 egg = 6 g protein (provides 40% of the estimated average requirements-EAR — for protein for a 1-5yr old)
- High in Iron
1-8 year old Iron requirements =7-10mg 1 egg = 1 mg Iron-provides 15-30% of children’s Iron requirements Iron is an essential component of Haemoglobin whose role is to transport Oxygen to muscles. Iron is also necessary for growth, development, normal cellular functioning
- A poor Iron intake can lead to Iron deficiency anaemia which can result in cognitive and psychological effects, including delayed attention and social withdrawal
The source of the Iron is Heme Iron and this is far better absorbed than the Iron found in fortified cereals and plants
- High in B vitamins
B vitamins convert our food into fuel, act as antioxidants, boosts HDL cholesterol B12-essential for brain health-egg provides 0.33 mcg 1-8 yrs. 0.7-1 mcg (egg provides 40% requirements)
- Good Source of Vitamin D-contains 40 IU (Vitamin D promotes calcium absorption in the gut and maintains adequate serum calcium and phosphate concentrations to enable normal mineralization of bone)
Vitamin D also has an essential role in brain development Infant requirements 400 IU =10mcg 1-13yrs requirements 600IU =15mcg Egg provides 40 IU (10% of child’s requirements)
- Selenium-This is an antioxidant — protection against cancer, heart disease, rheumatoid arthritis and recurrent infections.
1 egg =15.7 micrograms 1-8 yrs. requires 20-30 mcg Eggs provides 60% of their requirements
- Rich source of Choline (part of the B complex vitamins) –found in the egg yolk
Associated with better neurological function, evidence that helps with foetal brain development when consumed by pregnant women, acts as a neurotransmitter 1 egg =147mg 1-8yr requires 200-250mg (therefore egg provides 65 % of requirements)
- Role in maintaining a healthy weight –the protein content promotes satiety, it is a lower calorie food
- Sugar Free!
Summary: eggs are an inexpensive, low energy, nutrient-dense foods that contain zero sugar! They can significantly contribute to diet quality, particularly intakes of selenium and vitamin D.
Check out this graph we made comparing eggs to bread, corn meal and oats.
How do your kids feel about eating eggs?