Cracking The Truth

I seriously love eggs. I love them for their versatility – the way you can cook an egg at least four different ways, with each variation a complete departure from the last. And I love them for their convenience – hard boil a dozen eggs, peel, and have ready to grab out of the fridge as part of breakfast, into your lunch, or for a snack whenever hunger strikes.

For years now, eggs have been making nutrition news headlines, with one study touting their nutritional benefits and the next refuting it. As a runner, routinely eating eggs will offer you a number of health benefits, which include maintaining a lean body weight, helping fight inflammation and promoting bone strength (thanks to high levels of protein, choline and vitamin D).

Premium Protein

The quality of protein provided by an egg is fantastic. It’s considered a complete protein, providing you with all the necessary amino acids, and it is very easily absorbed by the body. This makes it a great option for post-workout eats because it will help promote muscle growth and efficiently repair all those muscle fibres you just broke down. Protein is also very satiating, taking longer to digest in the body than carbohydrates. Studies that have reviewed the level of macronutrient intake at breakfast show that people who start their day with protein, specifically eggs, more easily lose or maintain weight versus those who eat a high carbohydrate breakfast, such as a bagel or bread.

Don’t Skip the Yolk

As a dietitian, I frequently get asked if the yolk should be included in your egg preparation. The short answer is yes. The egg yolk offers many nutritional benefits, especially for runners. Egg yolks are the richest source of the B vitamin choline (30 per cent) which is associated with reducing inflammation and better neurological function.

Yolks do contain fat, specifically in the form of cholesterol. We are seeing an increase in the number of studies that show consumption of dietary cholesterol from eggs (up to one yolk per day) can be safe, and the other nutrients in the yolk alongside the cholesterol are in fact protective against heart disease.

There are so many ways to incorporate eggs into your daily pre- and post-run eats. Aside from the obvious hard boil, scramble, poach, etc. Below are five ways I like to sneak eggs into my meals.

5 Innovative Ways to Eat Eggs

  • Baked inside an avocado
  • Mixed with kale and poured into muffin tins (mini-frittata!)
  • Scrambled into a stir-fry or pasta sauce (push ingredients to side of pan once done cooking, crack in 1 egg on medium-high heat, scramble and incorporate)
  • Stirred into porridge while cooking on your stovetop
  • Dropped (scrambled) into a stovetop soup (try lemon chicken and rice soup)

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