Colorado Egg Producers

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In the whirlwind of a new school year, let the nutritious, versatile egg be of service

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Bill Scebbi
Colorado Egg Producers Association executive director

We’ve entered an exciting time of the year for many families, as the late summer and early fall is witness to kids storming back into the classrooms and into the many activities that accompany the school year.    

However, it can no doubt be an overwhelming time for parents, with the calendar rapidly filling up quickly on youth-focused time commitments, and while also trying to address the many aspects that can determine a child’s performance in school.

There’s not one single solution that can bring calm to this frenzy, but – as crazy as this might sound – the incredible, edible egg can certainly be of service.   

Parents and educators know that children perform better in class and in afterschool activities if they’re consuming nutritious and protein-rich meals. This vital component of a student’s life has even been the focus of policy at the highest levels of government in recent years, with school-meal programs at the center of much political discussion.

That being the case, the all-around health portfolio that eggs bring to the table make them an ideal food for our budding leaders, while the abundance and diversity of simple, quick recipes to which the egg lends itself can assist time-crunched parents.

Why are eggs so great for students? Let’s start with the most important part of the body, in terms of learning; the brain. Eggs are an excellent source of choline, which is an essential nutrient critical for brain development and brain function, and eating eggs can also be associated with improved cognitive performance.

Another often overlooked benefit of eggs is their potential for eye enhancement. Lutein and zeaxanthin are antioxidants found in egg yolks that can promote eye health.

How about the muscles? Eating 20-30 grams of protein (just one egg has about 6 grams) promotes muscle recovery following exercise, making it a perfect partner to activities at recess or in physical education classes.

For the bones, eggs are one of the only foods that naturally contain vitamin D – a nutrient that’s important for good skeletal health.

They can also help make other healthy foods even more beneficial, as eggs increase absorption of powerful antioxidants, including vitamin E and lutein.

And while one egg contains all of the nutritional benefits listed above, it has only 70 calories.

But perhaps one of the greatest benefits of eggs is that they come in the form of breakfast frittatas with bacon; cheesy egg-stuffed pitas; egg sandwiches with spinach and tomato; breakfast-stuffed potato skins; Denver omelet bagels; and so much more.  

And if you’re a parent like many others who’ve been overwhelmed by back-to-school activities, I encourage you to visit the American Egg Board’s website, where you’ll find quick and easy recipes for various dishes, as well as more information about the benefits of eggs.

Meanwhile, the hard-working Colorado farmers I have the privilege of representing will continue providing the main ingredient in an environmentally sustainable and humane manner.

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