Eggs are a dietary staple in many a bodybuilder’s diet for good reason. A fantastic source of protein and fats, the humble egg also contains vitamins and minerals that promote health when included in a balanced diet.
Eggs contain vitamins D, A, B2 and B12 and are also a source of minerals such as folate and iodine. Both the white and the yolk are nutritional powerhouses, promoting good health. The white of an egg is where more than half of its protein is found, and this part of the egg is also an especially good source of selenium, zinc, iron and copper.
The yolk is where the fat from the egg is stored, and so this is where the best source of fat-soluble vitamins dwell. The egg yolk is a great source of vitamins such as vitamin D, E, K and vitamin A alongside lecithin. Eggs are a super versatile food that can be enjoyed at breakfast, lunch and dinner. They can be cooked or baked, using methods such as poaching, frying and scrambling.
You can reduce any added fat that may be added by methods of preparation by using low-calorie sprays instead of oil or butter.
Eggs are good for your heart!
Although eggs have had a bad name in the past, they are, in fact, conducive to a healthy heart when consumed as part of a healthy balanced diet. This is due to the fact that they contain many vitamins and minerals known to promote a healthy heart. Examples of heart-healthy egg nutrients include betaine and choline.
These nutrients are not just beneficial to the heart, but also other organs in the body such as the liver. Choline is a member of the B complex vitamin family which is essential for a healthy nervous system and cell membrane production.
Duck eggs are similar to a chicken egg but are larger in appearance. Just like chicken eggs, they are available in sizes ranging from small to large. Higher in protein than chicken eggs, they are also higher in fat content. When you boil a duck egg, the white takes on a bluish tinge and the yolk becomes a rich red-orange colour. A duck egg contains approximately 9g of protein and almost 10g of fat.
The most common and widely available type of egg, chicken eggs are a great budget-friendly option for anyone who wants to get the benefits from eggs without costing as much money as some of the more unusual types of eggs. A large chicken egg generally provides approximately 6g of protein, 5 g of fat and no carbohydrates.
Quail eggs are tiny in size, but pack a flavour similar to chicken eggs. Commonly recognised from gourmet cooking programmes and fancy menus in restaurants, the quail egg has a lot to offer as one of the prettiest eggs available. Quail egg shells come in a variety of colours from blue to brown or white.
Generally, about five quail eggs are the equivalent size of one large chicken egg. This type of egg is usually hard-boiled. A quail egg has around 1g of fat and 6g of protein.
Pheasant eggs are smaller than a chicken’s egg and have a richer flavour, the yolk inside is larger than a quail egg but approximately half the size of a yolk in a chicken’s egg. They are considered to be in season from April to June. The shells range in colour from an olive green to brown, and they taste great when boiled, poached or even fried.
A pheasant egg contains around 10g of fat and 7g of protein.
A monster of an egg, an ostrich egg is equivalent to almost 24 large chicken eggs. Weighing in at around 2kg, this egg is a fantastic treat that is great for sharing with friends. It will take you a lot longer to prepare than a standard chicken egg, however, with the boiling time at around 50 minutes. The shell of an ostrich egg is smooth and generally a cream colour.
They are considered in season from April to September. Realistically few people will eat an entire ostrich egg, but to compare the nutritional value to an equivalent serving of a chicken’s egg, an ostrich egg serving will contain approximately 83 calories.
Guinea fowl egg
Guinea fowl eggs are known for their rich and strongly flavoured yolk. Their shells are an oatmeal colour and although they are around 30% smaller than a hen’s egg, they pack a lot more flavour inside. The guinea fowl is a bird native to South Africa and they only lay around fifty to sixty eggs a year.
They are considered to be in season from spring to summer. This bird is especially popular in France and its eggs are tasty when boiled. A guinea fowl egg contains about 3.5g of fat and approximately 25g of protein.
Take home message
Eggs are such a great addition to any athlete’s diet, providing, of course, you don’t have an allergy to them. Why not be adventurous and taste some different types of eggs other than chicken ones to switch up your diet and get the health benefits that come from including eggs in your diet plan!