The A-Z of Eggs

A kitchen staple and the heart of many dishes and desserts, eggs are a must-have ingredient for many home chefs and consummate professionals. But what do we really know about eggs? To dive into the ins and outs of eggs, we’ve compiled a fun A-Z look at aspects of this common food item. From antioxidants to zinc, we’ve covered eggs across the whole alphabet. What else can you think of?

A is for Antioxidant.

Chicken eggs are high in a number of important antioxidants which help the human body to slow

Eggs are high in two particularly noteworthy antioxidants, namely lutein and zeaxanthin. Both of these antioxidants are found in the yolks of eggs and help support healthy eyesight and eye health. Zeaxanthin accumulates mostly in the retina, where it wards off light-related damage to the eyes.

B is for B vitamins.

Vitamin B is found in eggs in different forms, including as riboflavin (B2), pantothenic acid (B5) and Cyanocobalamin (B12). Riboflavin is important for growth, red blood cell development, energy, vision, and the healthy functioning of the nervous system. Vitamin B5 plays a role in converting foodstuffs into energy and breaking down fat. Vit B5 also helps the body to produce vitamin D. Vitamin B12 helps your DNA and your red blood cells.

C is for cholesterol.

For many years, there was the perception that eggs contributed to high cholesterol and that eggs were bad for you as a result. Recent studies have shown that these fears were unfounded and that eggs actually improve your cholesterol profile.

D is for vitamin D.

Want to add more of the sunshine vitamin to your life? Eggs are one of the few natural dietary sources of vitamin D. Vitamin D has been found to ward off depression, increase weight loss and fight off disease.

E is for Vitamin E

Heart health is important for all of us, and vitamin E, which is found in eggs, can assist in keeping our hearts healthy. Vitamin E enhances immune function and can prevent the formation of clots in heart arteries.

F is for folate.

Folate, also known as folic acid, is a water-soluble vitamin that supports cell division and supports the healthy development of unborn babies. One large egg contains around 22mcg of folate, or around 8% of the daily recommended amount. Folate is especially critical for pregnant women, as consuming enough folate can prevent certain birth defects such as spina bifida.  

G is for games.

Eggs are used for games across the world. The egg toss, egg hunts, egg-and-spoon races are some of the popular games that incorporate eggs into the fun!

H is for Hollandaise.

A culinary classic, a hollandaise sauce is a rich and buttery sauce that is generally made with butter, lemon and egg yolks. Traditionally, a hollandaise sauce is used to top off eggs benedict.

I is for Iodine.

Iodine is a mineral that is used by your body, particularly by the thyroid glands in order to produce thyroid hormones. These thyroid hormones are very important for the regulation of metabolism. An iodine deficiency can lead to the thyroid gland swelling up, and hyperthyroidism. One large egg contains around 16% of your daily requirements for iodine.

J is for jokes

Who doesn’t love a whimsical egg joke? They are a favourite of kids around the world, serving to lighten the mood and make you chuckle.

Why are egg jokes so funny? Because they crack you up!

K is for vitamin K.

Vitamin K is a group of compounds that can be divided into two groups, K1 and K2. K1 is mainly found in plant foods, while K2 is found in animal-sourced foods such as eggs. Vitamin K plays a key role in ensuring that blood clots and preventing excessive bleeding. One large egg yolk contains around 5.8 mcg of vitamin K, or 5% of the daily values.

L is for lutein.

For eye health, lutein is critical. Lutein is an antioxidant that protects your eyes against light damage.

M is for meringue.

A classic staple, meringues are made using egg whites and sugar.

N is for nutrition.

Eggs are amongst the most nutritious foods on the planet, offering a wide range of vitamins and nutrients that are needed to build healthy bodies and thriving minds.

O is for omelettes.

A delicious and classic breakfast option, omelettes are one of the most popular ways to prepare eggs. The largest omelette in history weighed 6.644 tons and was made in Portugal in 2012, according to the Guinness World Records.  It took over 6 hours to prepare this gigantic omelette and required a team of 55 people. 145, 000 eggs were used to make the omelette.

P is for protein.

Eggs are an excellent source of protein. Protein is found throughout the body and serves as the building blocks of the body. It is essential to consume enough protein to keep your body thriving.

Eating enough protein can aid with lowering blood pressure, weight loss, increase muscle mass and optimise bone health.

Q is for quality.

Quality protein that is. Eggs are a source of high-quality protein. A high-quality protein is also referred to as a complete protein, which is a protein that contains all the essential amino acids. High-quality proteins have high biological value and are easily digestible.

R is for refrigerator.

Many experts recommend storing your eggs in the refrigerator.

S is for selenium.

Compared to other vitamins and minerals, our bodies require relatively little selenium. However, this does not mean that selenium is insignificant. Selenium is an antioxidant that prevents free radical damage to cells. Selenium serves to support our immune systems, thyroid function, and to keep our nails and hair healthy.

T is for temperature.

Temperature is critical for storing eggs safely. Across the world, countries offer different guidance on how to safely store eggs, based on the food safety processes within that country. In general, a large portion of food safety advice is focused on the temperature at which one transports and stores eggs.

U is for ubiquitous.

Eggs have become a staple of many modern diets, serving as a vital ingredient and part of a wide range of meals and culinary traditions.  

V is for versatility.

Eggs are a hugely versatile ingredient that can be used across a wide range of dishes and applications. Eggs can be used on their own to create delicious meals or can be combined with a wide variety of other ingredients to produce complicated dishes.

W is for weight loss.

As part of a balanced and healthy diet, eggs can assist in weight loss. Eggs score high on the satiety index, which means that they help keep you feeling fuller for longer.

X is for xanthophyll.

Xanthophyllic, hard to say, harder to spell. Xanthophylls are a type of yellow pigment that is found in nature. Xanthophylls form part of the carotenoid group and the yellow colouring of egg yolks indicates the presence of a xanthophyll pigment.

The most common xanthophylls in eggs are lutein and zeaxanthin, which have been discussed elsewhere in this article.

Y is for yolks.

The bright yellow part of eggs contains many of the important vitamins and nutrients that make eggs so healthy. The colour of an egg yolk is highly dependent on the diet of the hen that laid the egg.

Z is for Zinc.

Zinc is a mineral that is used by our bodies to stay healthy. Zinc is important for bodily processes including enzymatic reactions, immune function, wound healing and gene expression.

Eggs contain a moderate amount of zinc, with one egg containing around 5% of the average required daily intake.