Egg Nutrition: What's In An Egg?

WHAT’S IN AN EGG?

There’s a good reason eggs are often referred to as nature’s multivitamin – they’re one of the healthiest foods you can eat. 

With 11 different vitamins and nutrients packed into only 310 kilojoules or 74 calories, eggs really are the original superfood. 

Eggs are a perfect protein source because they contain all nine essential amino acids in the proportions needed to meet the body’s needs. They are also a natural source of key nutrients including omega-3 fatty acids, vitamins A, D, E and B12, antioxidants and choline.

Eggs used to be criticised because of their cholesterol content but decades of scientific research has shown the cholesterol in eggs has almost no effect on blood cholesterol levels. The Heart Foundation agrees and recently concluded eating eggs as part of a healthy diet DOES NOT increase the risk of heart disease in the general population. 

This means the Heart Foundation has lifted all restrictions for healthy people when it comes to egg consumption. It now recommends healthy Australians can eat eggs without limitation as part of a healthy diet. Find out more about the Heart Foundation's advice on egg consumption here.

A nutrient powerhouse

Every time you crack open an egg you’re receiving the goodness of: 

  • Protein: Eggs contain the highest quality protein on the planet because they provide all the essential amino acids in proportions that match human requirements. The body uses protein for growth and repair, helping in the formation of muscles, hair, nails, skin and organs. 

  • Vitamin D: Egg yolks are one of the few foods that contain vitamin D and they provide a convenient way to up your intake. This is especially important during winter when it becomes more challenging to obtain sufficient sun exposure. An average serve of eggs (2 eggs) provides 82 percent of the recommended dietary intake of Vitamin D, which is essential for strong bones, muscles and overall good health. 

  • Vitamins A, E and B12: Eggs contain many vitamins including vitamin B12 and are a source of vitamins A and E. Vitamin A helps form and maintain healthy skin, while also promoting good vision and a healthy immune system. Vitamin E is an antioxidant that helps protect cells from free radical damage. Vitamin B12 is essential for brain and nervous system function and also assists in proper blood formation. 

  • Omega-3 Fatty Acids: These are essential for a healthy heart, healthy joints and play an important role in infant development. 

  • Antioxidants: Eggs naturally contain antioxidants including Lutein and Zeaxanthin, which play a role in eye health. For certain age groups, these antioxidants are also thought to slow the progression of age-related macular degeneration, the leading cause of blindness in Australia. Eggs also contain selenium which is needed for a healthy immune system.

  • Choline: This is a micro-nutrient that has been shown to be very low in the diet of Australians. It is needed throughout the lifespan as it plays an important role in liver function, brain development, nerve function and cognition. Choline is particularly important during pregnancy to support foetal brain development. 

  • Iron: It’s estimated that 1 in 8 Australians aged over 2 years of age don’t get enough iron from their diet. Iron helps to produce haemoglobin which carries oxygen through the blood. Eggs are an easy way to help boost your iron intake.

Explore the tiles below and learn everything you need to know about the nutritional benefits of eggs with Australian Eggs: