There was a time when bodybuilders would eat 6-12 egg whites one to two times a day, shunning the egg yolk. The reason for this was to eat a fat-free meal that was high in protein. While they were eating fat-free meals, they were also missing out on extra protein, tons of vitamins and minerals, omega-3 faddy acids, and even amino acids.
You’d think bodybuilders would know about the benefits of eating the whole egg, but you must understand that the health-food and weight loss industry caused the fat-free eating epidemic in the mid 1980s.
The Egg Yolk Contains Half The Protein of the Egg!
Health Industry Rx on Fat Intake
One of the theories behind fat-free eating was that one gram of fat equals nine calories. The health and weight loss industry declared that if you could reduce your calories by reducing the fat intake, you would lose weight and increase health. Over the last two decades we’ve seen quite the opposite effect take place.
Another theory was that the egg yolk caused high cholesterol. The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends limiting your cholesterol to 300 mg for those with normal LDL. One yolk from a large egg contains about 185 mg of cholesterol. So, one egg yolk will fit well in your dietary budget, and as you see you have room for more.
Really, the innocent yolk shouldn’t be blamed for the cholesterol hike in the last few decades. It’s not like the older generation is eating more egg yolks. The bad cholesterol that causes heart disease is from trans fat. Trans fat is in any man-made fat including boxed and canned products, fast food, and other convenient food items.
Benefits of Eating the Whole Egg
Egg whites are a great source of healthy and fat-free protein, but there is still some playing room for adding in a yolk here and there. Eggs yolks contain protein and omega-3 fatty acids, two very important nutrients for your heart, muscles, and overall health.
Your body needs the fat and cholesterol in eggs and meat so you can produce hormones, such as testosterone which is responsible for building lean muscle mass.
The UndergroundHealthReporter.com discusses a study from the University of Connecticut by author and professor, Dr. Maria Luz Fernandez, “Eating the egg yolk was actually associated with enhanced health benefits in these high-risk individuals. Subjects consuming whole eggs had greater increases in HDL cholesterol and more significant reductions in the LDL/HDL cholesterol ratio than those who ate the cholesterol-free egg substitute.”
Eating the whole egg, yolk and all, is chalk full of vitamins and minerals your body needs. We’re talking tons of vitamin B’s that provide energy. Also, these little guys can be really helpful during the cold and flu season since they contain vitamin D.
Your body and muscles can also benefit from the amino acids in eating the whole eggs such as L-arginine, which is vital to the production of protein and the release of natural growth hormones and leucine, which helps the production of growth hormones and regulates blood sugar. The yolk has most of the vitamins and minerals and it carries half the protein!
Cooking eggs: You can manage your fat intake by cooking your eggs in a non-stick cooking spray. Frying your egg in olive oil is a choice too. Usually to manage calories and fat a lot of people put one egg yolk, even up to two, per 6 egg whites for large servings or large healthy recipes.
While eating egg whites is certainly a great thing if your goal is to cut calories, don’t forget that your body needs the protein, omega-3 fatty acids, amino acids, and vitamins and minerals in the yolk of the egg. You will be doing your hormones and heart a favor by including 1-2 yolks in your diet a day. Another plus, the fat in them adds flavor.
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Karen Sessions – Figure Coach