Recently, the USDA exonerated dietary cholesterol (and the much maligned egg) in its latest Dietary Guidelines. This corrects previous recommendations based on...um, guesswork. Well, you really can't blame the scientific advisory panel that writes the guidelines. Given that heart disease-causing plaques are made mostly from cholesterol, and eggs are high in cholesterol, it's not that far of a leap to make that eggs cause heart disease. Unfortunately, there was never any data to back up that claim. Fortunately for you, eggs are once again a beloved and delicious source of protein...and much much more.
Eggs are rich in antioxidants and are a good source of important nutrients like lecithin, choline, and vitamins A and E. What's more, according to research from the University of Eastern Finland, regularly eating eggs could lead to improved blood glucose balance and may reduce the risk of type 2 diabetes. But there's more to buying eggs than choosing between brown and white.
Research from the Pennsylvania State University has found that eggs from hens allowed to forage on pasture are higher in some beneficial nutrients than those of conventionally raised hens. Pastured hens make nutrient-dense eggs with higher levels of vitamins A, E, and D and nearly double the amount of omega-3 fatty acids!
Though the cost of pastured eggs is greater than conventional, they are still a less expensive protein source than conventionally raised meat. Buying them from local farmers, like Nevin from Bendy Brook Farm, or Tom & Barb from Meadowset Farm & Apiary, gives you the opportunity to ask them about their farms and farming methods. Sure the eggs may cost a bit more, but ensuring that the chickens live a good life and in return, make a healthier product, is more than worth it.