New Year’s, a holiday symbolic for fresh beginnings, is a time for people around the world to reflect on the year and set goals for the future. A few of the most popular New Year’s resolutions are to eat healthier, exercise more and lose weight. Those who pursue these admirable feats can prime themselves for success by including one staple in their daily diets: eggs. Often overlooked as a powerhouse of nutrition, one egg provides essential nutrients and high quality protein necessary to help you achieve and maintain health goals year round.
“The nutrients in eggs provide vitamins and minerals that protect against chronic disease and also supply the quality protein necessary for muscle development,” said Terry Tormohlen, a Colorado egg farmer and member of the Colorado Egg Producers (CEP) Association. “If eaten for breakfast, they keep you alert all day and when enjoyed after a workout, they help build muscle mass. Additionally, buying eggs locally produced by CEP members ensures that you and your family are enjoying a safe and wholesome product. We encourage you to continue to support your Colorado egg farmers and buy local.”
Eggs are packed with an abundance of nutrients and have only 75 calories. One serving has 13 essential vitamins and minerals, high-quality protein including all nine essential amino acids, as well as healthy unsaturated fats. By eating eggs for breakfast, individuals will feel fuller, more satisfied and more focused throughout the day.
Nutrients in eggs can improve various health issues, as well. The American Egg Board lists the following on its website:
• Weight management: The high-quality protein in eggs helps you to feel fuller longer and stay energized, which contributes to maintaining a healthy weight.
• Muscle strength and muscle-loss prevention: Research indicates that high-quality protein may help active adults build muscle strength and help prevent muscle loss in middle-aged and aging adults.
• Healthy pregnancy: Egg yolks are an excellent source of choline, an essential nutrient that contributes to fetal brain development and helps prevent birth defects. Two eggs provide about 250 milligrams of choline, or roughly half of the recommended daily intake for pregnant and breastfeeding women.
• Brain function: Choline also aids the brain function of adults by maintaining the structure of brain cell membranes, and is a key component of the neuro-transmitter that helps relay messages from the brain through nerves to the muscles.
• Eye health: Lutein and zeaxanthin, two antioxidants found in egg yolks, help prevent macular degeneration, a leading cause of age-related blindness. Though eggs contain a small amount of these two nutrients, research shows that the lutein from eggs may be more bioavailable than lutein from other food sources.
In addition to living healthier with eggs, the American Egg Board and CEP encourage Americans to resolve to give back to their communities this year. For every pledge it receives on its website from people who promise to “Eat good. Do good every day,” it will donate one egg to Feeding America. Visit www.incredibleedibleegg.com to pledge.
CEP is committed to doing what’s right for its community, as illustrated by the regular donation of thousands of eggs to food banks throughout Colorado. CEP also supports education and recently launched a contest for elementary school classrooms through its “Kids who Egg-cell” contest. The classroom that submits the most completed egg quizzes to CEP will win a nutritious omelet breakfast for its entire school, served by Colorado Commissioner of Agriculture, John Salazar. Quizzes can be found on the CEP website.
CEP is a membership organization representing seven family farms throughout the state. Local egg farmers take great pride in providing eggs to Coloradans. They are also proud to offer consumers the choice between cage, cage-free eggs, organic, nutrient enhanced, brown and white eggs. You can find locally produced, fresh, wholesome and safe eggs in the dairy case of your favorite Colorado supermarkets.
Inspired to learn more about Colorado Egg Producers? Visit our exhibit at the National Western Stock show January 7th through 22nd. Our interactive barn is fun for the whole family with videos and slide shows, life-like baby chicks and hens, a conveyor belt for kids to operate, informational egg brochures, recipes and so much more! You can even find out where you can buy high quality, safe and nutritious Colorado produced eggs. Find us on the 3rd floor in the Hall of Education in the CSU Ag Adventure display. For more facts and information about eggs and CEP, including a list of where to buy Colorado eggs, please visit www.coloradoeggproducers.com.