Recently, the U.S. Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee issued nutrition recommendations specifically regarding eggs as a source of nutrition. The Scientific Report was drafted by top medical doctors and leading nutrition scientists, and their recommendations on what constitutes a healthy diet will shape 2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. So, what exactly did the experts say about eggs?
The advisory committee recommends eggs as an important first food for infants and toddlers, from birth to 24 months old, as well as for pregnant and lactating women. Eggs are an excellent source and one of the most concentrated food sources of choline in the American diet. Choline is an essential nutrient critical for fetal brain development. Importantly, 92% of pregnant women fail to meet the daily Adequate Intake (AI) recommendations for choline.
Eggs as a First Food
The Advisory Committee also specifically recommended eggs as an important first food. The latest research on food allergy prevention recommends introducing eggs when your baby is 4-6 months old and developmentally ready to help reduce the chances of developing an egg allergy. Eggs are an important first food as they provide eight essential nutrients that help build a healthy foundation for life.
But Wait, There’s More!
Additionally, the Advisory Committee encouraged eggs for pre-teens and adolescents, not just infants and toddlers. They reinforced the strong body of evidence that dietary cholesterol is not a nutrient of concern. The science on eggs and cholesterol has been steadfast. The vast majority of scientific evidence shows egg consumption is not associated with cardiovascular disease. In fact, a recent Harvard University study that evaluated more than 30 years of data reaffirmed that eating eggs is not associated with cardiovascular disease. Leading health organizations such as the American Heart Association also state that eggs can be part of heart-healthy diet patterns.
Eggs are a nutritional powerhouse that contribute to health and wellbeing at every age and life stage, providing critical nutrients including protein, choline, riboflavin (vitamin B2), vitamin B12, biotin (B7), pantothenic acid (B5), iodine and selenium, which are valuable for supporting muscle and bone health, brain development and more. The Advisory Committee also noted eggs are a source of vitamin D, a nutrient of public health concern because it is under-consumed by all Americans.
As Americans are building healthier diets, you can count on eggs. For more information on building a healthy diet with eggs, please visit EggNutritionCenter.org.