Eggs on the other hand, often take a knock, falling foul due to their cholesterol content.
Actually, eggs are pretty close to a superfood, mother nature has packaged all the goodies necessary to build a healthy happy baby bird into an egg.
But baby birds don’t enjoy their food cooked, they have it raw.
Researchers at the University of Alberta suggest eating eggs the way the baby birds do – raw, will provide you with added anti-oxidants.
What is an antioxidant ?
Antioxidants is a term bandied about by health gurus, but what is an antioxidant ?
Our bodies “burn” the food we eat to provide us with energy, but during this process reactive oxygen species (ROS) are created. These metabolic by-products are extremely unstable because they’ve acquired an extra single electron. The extra electron turns the chemical into a villain – it “steals” an electron from another molecule, unfortunately, this practice leads to the other molecule being damaged.
From a health perspective, an antioxidant is a chemical which is able to bind to reactive oxygen species and thus neutralize them.
Antioxidants are electron scavengers
From a chemical perspective, an antioxidant is a chemical which is happy to provide electrons “as gifts”.
Antioxidants come in lots of shapes and sizes, sometimes they have actually been described and named, famous ones include the polyphenols and carotenoids.
But a lot of the time, we really don’t know who is actually providing the electrons, we just know that a particular food is able to do this job.
NOTE : Measuring whether a food can do this or not is a very simple laboratory test.
Researchers from the University of Alberta did this laboratory test using raw egg yolks, from hens who has been fed wheat or mielies (corn). They found that raw egg yolk is very good at providing these electrons and found that a single egg yolk, has twice the antioxidant power of an apple.
The researchers from the University of Alberta went one step further, and tried to identify which chemicals in the yolk were doing the job. Among the chemicals they identified were
- Carotenoids, the chemical that gives the egg yolk its golden yellow colour and humans a healthy glow
- Two amino acids known as tryptophan and tyrosine, as well as a couple of peptides (very small proteins) also acted as anti-oxidants
Cooking squishes the egg’s antioxidant powers
They discovered that the egg antioxidant capabilities took a nose dive when the egg was cooked.
Unfortunately when the egg yolk is boiled or fried, it changes the chemistry. The egg changes from being liquid to solid and the resulting change in chemistry stops the antioxidant powers significantly.
Egg nogg is a power beverage
If you’re looking for a relatively cheap multivitamin, which includes most of the major vitamins and minerals, as well as a load of antioxidants, try a raw egg.
PS. Raw egg will need to be doctored a little to make it palatable, so whip yourself up a power beverage – mix a raw egg, in a glass of milk, add a pinch of spice and sweeten it to taste.
Interested in finding other chemical combinations which will boost your body chemistry ?
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Did you learn something new or do you have a different perspective ? I’d love to hear from you so post me a comment below…..