As we age, it can become more difficult to maintain a nutrient-rich, balanced diet. That’s because ageing can be linked to a variety of changes in how the body works, including a reduction in your appetite, loss of muscle mass and the ability to absorb nutrients efficiently.
Nutrition plays a huge role in supporting and maintaining quality health throughout the ageing process. In fact, a balanced diet that meets your daily nutrient requirements can help promote physical and cognitive health and wellbeing, contribute to bone health, eye health, vascular function and immunity.
Adding more nutrient-dense foods into your diet is easier and cheaper than you think, just by including the humble egg. For around 50-cents per egg, this delicious superfood packs a punch with its vast nutritional and health benefits.
Inexpensive, versatile, and easy to cook, eggs are widely available, great value for money and offer the perfect solution for ageing bodies with its easily digestible source of high-quality protein, essential vitamins and minerals and valuable antioxidants.
Did you know that one serving (which equals two eggs) provides all 9 essential amino acids and approximately 20% of the daily protein recommendations for older adults? A serving of eggs also contains 13 essential vitamins and nutrients, vitamins A, B12, D, E, choline, selenium and iron.
The National Heart Foundation no longer limits the number of eggs that can be eaten each week in a healthy, balanced diet and suggests up to 7 eggs a week for those with elevated cholesterol levels or who are living with diabetes. One of the key reasons is because continued health and nutrition research has shown that the dietary cholesterol in eggs has little to no impact on serum (blood) cholesterol. Just remember to keep an eye on those unhealthy saturated and trans fats that you often find in junk food which are the real cholesterol villains.
Eggs also score highly on the satiety index, a scale that measures the ability of a food to make you feel full for longer. That makes eggs the perfect high protein snack or meal to keep hunger at bay any time of the day.
Did you get your daily dose of selenium, lutein and zeaxanthin? Well, if you are eating your eggs, you are well on the way. Put simply, these are antioxidants that are associated with decreased risk of age-related macular degeneration (AMD) – the leading cause of blindness in older Australians.
Adding eggs to your weekly meal plan also helps nourish your body with nutrients such as bioavailable vitamin A and omega 3 fatty acids, which help contribute to maintaining good eye health.
Declining brain function is one of the most common concerns with ageing. So, it’s good to know that eggs are one of the few foods to contain choline, a nutrient most people do not produce enough of naturally to meet the daily requirement.
Most people haven’t even heard of choline because it doesn’t make the headlines, but this nutrient is critical for building cell membranes. Choline is essential for a healthy body and may help prevent cognitive decline in the elderly and could help you improve concentration and memory.
Almost one in four Australians have a mild or moderate vitamin D deficiency. In the cooler months, these deficiency levels rise to as high as 40%.
From healthy teeth and bones to strengthening muscles and bones, supporting your immune system, and even helping with depression, vitamin D is the one to watch. Low vitamin D levels have been found to be a key contributor to hospitalisations for falls and fractures in older Aussies.
The good news is; eggs contain some of the highest quantities of vitamin D of any food. In fact, eating just two eggs a day is a delicious and easy way to get more than 50% of the recommended dietary intake of vitamin D in older adults.
Adding more of this superfood to your diet is much easier than you think! From breakfast, lunch to dinner, or just a snack in between, there are countless ways to enjoy eggs! And for all the sweet tooths out there, there are some great dessert recipes too.
Filled with healthy fats and muscle-building protein, eggs are the ultimate way to squash the munchies, curb your hunger and fuel-up with essential nutrients. Plus, depending on the size, they are also low in calories, with between 55 to 80 calories in every egg.
IMPORTANT LEGAL INFO This article is of a general nature and FYI only, because it doesn’t take into account your personal health requirements or existing medical conditions. That means it’s not personalised health advice and shouldn’t be relied upon as if it is. Before making a health-related decision, you should work out if the info is appropriate for your situation and get professional medical advice.
Eggs are a great fridge staple and okay to eat every day as part of a healthy balanced diet. Eggs are also a great source of vitamin D, for healthy bones, choline which helps prevent cognitive decline as well as a range of vitamins & antioxidants which contribute to long term eye health.