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Eggs are one of the best and cheapest sources of high-quality proteins and a powerhouse of essential nutrients - vitamins, minerals and healthy fatty acids that have numerous benefits for overall health. As for egg nutrition, each hard-boiled egg contains 13 essential vitamins and minerals - Vitamin D, E, K, A, B-vitamins, calcium, sodium, magnesium, potassium, phosphorus, selenium and zinc along with antioxidants and 6 grams of high-quality protein.
Reasons to Choose Hard Boiled Eggs
Eggs are extremely convenient to cook and are usually prepared as hard-boiled, half-boiled, poach, fried and scrambled. But there are a number of reasons why health-conscious individuals prefer hard-boiled eggs over other forms.
Firstly, hard boiled eggs make an easy and convenient snack that can be prepared simply by dropping the eggs in boiling water. Boiled eggs are a compact snack that can be easily carried in a lunch pack so you can take them to work, to the gym or on the road and munch on them whenever you feel hungry.
Secondly, hard-boiled eggs are preferred over fried or scrambled eggs because they do not require any oil or fat for cooking. Boiled eggs are comparatively lower in fat, mainly saturated fat that increases the cholesterol levels in the blood.
Thirdly, when it comes to fats and nutrients, hard boiled eggs contains lesser amount of total fat, cholesterol and calories compared to scrambled or fried eggs. All eggs contain vitamin B12, but hard-boiled eggs retain more of these vitamins compared to fried or scrambled eggs.
Lastly and most importantly, boiling the eggs to perfection reduces the risk of food poisoning caused by Salmonella. It is a type of bacteria that may be present in raw eggs and can lead to foodborne illnesses such as diarrhea, fever, abdominal cramps and vomiting. This is the reason, half-boiled or poached eggs are not recommended for pregnant women, children or elderly people.
7 Health Benefits of Hard Boiled Eggs
Proteins are the building blocks of muscles. Muscles are built through a process of wear and tear and repair. Weight training and resistance exercises create minute tears in the microfibers of muscles and as these tears heal, the muscles become stronger and bigger. The amino acids present in protein play a key role in this procedure. Boiled eggs are one of the easily available sources of complete protein that contains all nine essential amino acids that are beneficial for muscle building. Therefore, professional athletes and body builders include boiled eggs in their daily diet.
Protein in hard-boiled egg also acts as a consistent source of energy for the body and helps to keep you satiated for a longer period of time which in turn prevents over-eating and unmindful snacking which is extremely beneficial for weight loss. As for hard boiled egg calories, each egg contains approximately 70 calories and is low in saturated fats. Having a couple of hard-boiled eggs for breakfast helps to stave off hunger later during the day.
Improves Cardiovascular Health:
Despite the popular belief that egg yolks are high in cholesterol and calories that damages the heart, research proves that hard-boiled eggs are actually beneficial for the heart. Eggs have the ability to reduce the risk of heart diseases and boost cardiovascular functions. The heart-healthy feature of eggs can be attributed to the presence of omega-3 fatty acids in eggs. Omega-3 fatty acids lower the levels of triglycerides in the blood which in turn helps to lower cholesterol. The fats in eggs can also regulate cholesterol absorption and Metabolism.
Hard-boiled eggs are a potent source of vitamin A and lutein, two essential nutrients for improved eye health and better vision. Vitamin A protects the membranes present around the corneas and reduces the risk of night blindness. A single hard-boiled egg can supply 75 micrograms of vitamin A. Lutein is an antioxidant that strengthens the retina and reduces the chances of age-related macular degeneration. Lutein found in boiled eggs is more readily absorbed in the body compared to other vegetarian sources.
Vitamin D is an important component of hard boiled egg nutrition. Boiled eggs are one of the few food-based sources of vitamin D that is essential to maintain the strength of your bones and teeth. Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that boosts the absorption of calcium from foods and regulates the level of calcium in the blood. A normal healthy individual requires 600 IU of vitamin D every day. Just one large hard boiled egg can provide approximately 45 IU of vitamin D.
Improved Brain Function:
The delicious egg yolk of a hard boiled egg is a rich source of choline, a B-vitamin-like nutrient that supports brain functions and maintains the structure of the cell membranes. Choline also functions as the main ingredient in the production of neurotransmitters through which the brain cells communicate with each other. Choline reduces inflammation in the brain and lowers the risk of Alzheimer's disease. In pregnant women, choline obtained from the hard boiled eggs help in brain development of the fetus and prevents birth defects.
Better Skin, Hair and Nails:
Last but not the least, hard boiled eggs makes you prettier by improving the quality of your skin, hair and nails. The high concentration of nutrients choline and lutein in boiled eggs help to fight wrinkles and supports the B-vitamins in the production of collagen and elastin, the two vital proteins for maintaining skin elasticity. Vitamin D and biotin in eggs help in the development of keratin that helps to strengthen and improve the quality of hair and nails.
With all that said, it is important to check the quality of the eggs in order to reap the health benefits to the fullest. It is best to opt for free range organic eggs from pasture-raised chickens which have not been injected with hormones or antibiotics. Organic eggs have higher concentration of omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin A and vitamin E as compared to regular eggs.