Are you going to eat……Eggs?

For those of you used to seeing the more exotic foodery in Are you going to eat that? I should confirm first off that I am just talking about your bog standard eggs. Hen eggs. Chicken embrya. Un-fertilized pullus zygotes. Yeah, eggs.

Eggs have been a topic of hot debate in the food/health pages for some time, and the question is this- are they ok to eat? Well then, how many is it ok to eat? Are they dietary evil? WTF is salmonella anyway? Some say one a day, some say four a week, some say as many as you want but never more than one at a time. Some say every day but never the yolks. And on it goes.

I’m inclined to be on the pro-egg side of the argument. They’re quick to cook, high in protein, no in carbohydrate and pretty filling in relation to their size. Hey they keep the breakfast calories down too if only you can resist the obvious pairings of toast or bacon or benedict. *drooool* Ok fine, I love eggs and I’ll admit it freely but they worry me. I don’t usually go with foodie frightners, generally published by peddlars of alternative foodstuffs- I eat plenty of tuna sandwiches and don’t have mercury poisoning yet. Take that internet bullshitters! But you will end up taking on cholesterol from all the eggs you eat, and cholesterol is bad. Worse it seems as one enters the second decade of one’s twenties. Ahem.

Perhaps as with most things, moderation is the key. I’m not giving them up, I likes them. But I’m conscious of too many, particularly as I’m prone to monthly low carb projects in a (vain) attempt to control the expansion of my derrière, and they are an obvious and easy choice. I’m going with no more than 5 a week. I think. My Mr eats them pretty much every day, and has been nagged about it previously when I still believed that this made any difference. As with many things, these chains of thought and mini nags on The Male lead to some googling. There is some interesting stuff out there about eggs. Now for some debatable examples of that claim:

  • One egg is 12.6% of your average adult’s recommended protein intake, and that protein is high quality- which we like for muscle growth and weight management
  • Eggs have a lot of choline, which makes you a better baby vessel and could make your babies have better memory skills when they are no longer babies. Please note, that they will still always be your baby 🙂
  • The yolk of an egg gets it’s colour from pigments called lutein and zeaxanthin.
  • Zeaxanthin is a cool word and I will try to use it more often in general conversation.
  • The colour of an egg yolk is all about the diet of the bird it came from and isn’t a reliable sign of quality contrary to popular foodie nonsense
  • Your average hen lays 300 eggs a year. Ouchy. 
  • Eggs contain all your 8 essential amino acids plus phosphorous, calcium, iron, vitamins A, D, E, B1 and B2. No C though, so get that elsewhere or risk scurvy. 
  • The study of eggs is called Oology. No really, it sounds like a made up word but it’s true. 

The perfect scrambled egg breakfast, showing in my house most Sunday mornings.

At this point, I’ll answer myself and say that yes, I’m going to eat eggs. However I don’t believe that all eggs are created equally and origin is very important, in my humble. I say a firm and resounding NO to battery eggs. If you come from another planet and don’t know why, check out a google image result list for ‘Battery Hen’. But it’s so much more complicated than just avoiding eggs that come from an abusive avian slave trade- free range, uncaged, barn hens, organic, free range organic but wait, hang on- if they are free range and go where they want and hence eat what they want how do we know it’s organic? Exactly how free is free range? Is a wet muddy field a place to make a chicken happy? Once again, doing the right/healthy/moral thing becomes a veritable minefield of options.
Until recently I went for barn eggs. The chickens can move around, dust bathe and roost properly and they don’t cost a fortune. I’m all for barn eggs. Then I read a book that told me lots of frightening things about the crap that builds up in animal fat if said animal has been anywhere near a pesticide and I stick to organics, which cost more but also tend to be free range so I can feel smug and self righteous about the decreased moral cost. I must also admit that the organics do tend to be somewhat tastier and have a fantastic colour which is so appetizing. So yes, a box of tesco mixed weight organic eggs here please. Assuming I don’t have any of the offerings from my step mum’s hens who all have jaunty names but I can only remember Sunday Roast, as named by the younger male sibling.

Heheheh, Sunday Roast.

Sorry, where was I? That’s right not really anywhere closer to knowing how many eggs I’m allowed to eat, but I am going to eat them, just not every day.

I robbed many of the above facts from the following website: http://www.incredibleegg.org

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