When Americans jumped on the low cholesterol bandwagon several decades ago, eggs became the bad guy. Those who chose to continue eating eggs generally favored the whites or egg substitutes, which was a BIG mistake.
While eggs are one of the most allergenic foods on the planet, they are also one of the most nutritious. In addition to being a good source of quality protein, choline and cholesterol for healthy brain function (you read that right – cholesterol is good for you), eggs contain the following essential vitamins and minerals:
This gets tricky since food manufacturers can make claims like “cage-free” or “free range” to trick the public into believing that their hens are treated humanely. The reality is that most chickens are raised in small cages, while so-called “cage-free” birds live in crowded warehouses and unsanitary conditions.
There is sometimes an opening to the outdoors, but due to over-crowding, it is difficult to access. Once they do make it outside, eggs laid there can be labeled “free range.”
Often deprived of sunlight and fresh air, artificial lighting is on 24/7 to increase laying time. Chickens react the same way humans would in that environment – they go crazy and attack each other. To prevent the hens from killing and eating each other, their beaks are (painfully) trimmed or removed.
Another problem with commercial eggs is that they are fed grains like soy (which adversely affects your hormones), and corn. Both of these grains are genetically modified unless specified organic.
Quality eggs are more expensive because it costs more to raise chickens humanely. Considering the nutritional value and how much happier they are, I think it is highly worth the extra dollars.
While prices range from $4.50 to $7.50 per carton, they are often on sale. Eggs with the highest quality and lowest price are from hens you raise yourself or purchase from a trusted local farmer.
Chickens should be outside in the sunshine (with clean nesting space inside) and foraging the ground for worms, insects, etc., rather than spending their lives in a crowded, unsanitary factory.
For the best quality, nutritious eggs that are treated humanely, look for: