Are eggs safe to eat raw?

In this brief guide, we are going to answer the question, “Are eggs safe to eat raw?”. We will discuss the health benefits and risks of eating raw eggs. We will also look at safety precautions you must take when eating raw eggs.

Are eggs safe to eat raw?

Yes, but there are certain risks of eating raw eggs. The possibility of bacteria contamination in raw eggs, which could result in a Salmonella illness, is the worst risk of raw eggs. Eating only pasteurized raw eggs reduces the danger of infection. 

What are the risks of eating raw eggs?

The main risk of eating raw eggs is a Salmonella infection. Lower nutrient absorption is another risk of raw eggs. 

Higher risk of Salmonella infection

Salmonella, a form of dangerous bacteria, can be found in raw and undercooked eggs. 

Salmonella contamination can occur in one of two ways: directly during the production of an egg inside the hen, or indirectly if Salmonella contaminates the egg’s exterior and enters through the shell membrane. Indirect contamination can occur during the manufacturing, handling, or preparation of food 

Food poisoning is most likely caused by eating raw and undercooked, contaminated eggs.

Stomach cramps, vomiting, diarrhea, and fever are all signs of Salmonella food poisoning. These symptoms commonly develop 6 hours – 6 days after catching an illness and can continue anywhere from 4- 7 days after eating bacteria-contaminated food.

While the majority of people who get Salmonella food poisoning recover quickly, some people are at a higher risk of infection and may experience more severe symptoms. Raw eggs should be avoided by those who are old, pregnant, have a damaged immune system, or have young children, specifically if the raw eggs were not pasteurized.

Less protein absorption

It’s likely that the protein in raw eggs won’t be absorbed by the body as much as the protein in cooked eggs.

Reduces the absorption of biotin

Biotin, often known as vitamin B7, is a water-soluble vitamin. This vitamin aids in the creation of fatty acids and glucose in the body. It’s especially crucial when you’re pregnant.

Raw egg whites include a protein called avidin, which is a good source of biotin in the diet. In the digestive system, avidin attaches to biotin and prevents it from being absorbed. When the egg has been cooked, this is not an issue because heat destroys avidin.

What are the benefits of eating raw eggs?

Many of the nutritional benefits of raw eggs are the same as those of cooked eggs.

Raw eggs, like cooked eggs, are packed with nutrients. Raw eggs are high in protein, vitamins, minerals, healthy fats, and antioxidants, all of which protect your brain, eyes, and heart. The majority of the nutrients are found in the yolks.

They’re high in high-quality protein, healthy fats, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants, and  several additional vitamins and minerals

Eggs are among the greatest animal protein sources available.

They do, in fact, contain all nine necessary amino acids. As a result, they’re frequently referred to as “complete” protein sources.

How to safely eat raw eggs?

  • The key thing to remember is that uncooked eggs should be eaten as soon as possible after they are cracked. Bacteria, such as Salmonella, require time to multiply (replicate), thus how soon you eat your eggs is critical. 

Because acid in the human stomach will defeat most bacteria in raw eggs, they are unlikely to cause foodborne illness. However, if a raw egg meal lies on the counter for a few hours, the microbial load rises, raising the risk of acute food poisoning.

  • When an egg is broken, any harmful bacteria on the eggshell may come into contact with the egg and end up on the plate. When a fragment of a cracked eggshell drops into a raw egg or if eggs are divided by transferring the yolk in between shell halves, the danger of contamination increases.
  • Eat only pasteurized raw eggs. Pasteurization is one procedure that is frequently used to eliminate the risk of Salmonella contamination. During pasteurization, the quantity of bacteria and other microbes in eggs is reduced using a heating treatment.
  • Only buy eggs from the grocery store’s refrigerated food department.
  • In your home, keep eggs refrigerated. Storing them at ambient temperature may cause dangerous bacteria to multiply quickly.
  • Don’t buy or eat eggs that have beyond their expiration date.
  • Remove any cracked or soiled eggs.
  • Hands and everything else that has come into touch with uncooked eggs should be washed.

Conclusion

In this brief guide, we answered the question, “Are eggs safe to eat raw?”. We discussed the health benefits and risks of eating raw eggs. We also looked at safety precautions you must take when eating raw eggs.

If you have any questions or comments, please let us know.

References

https://www.australianeggs.org.au/facts-and-tips/eating-raw-eggs#:~:text=precautions%20are%20followed.-,The%20most%20important%20thing%20to%20know%20is%20that%20raw%20eggs,the%20bench%20is%20high%20risk.
https://www.healthline.com/nutrition/eating-raw-eggs#how-to-minimize-risk

Hi, I am Charlotte, I love cooking and in my previous life, I was a chef. I bring some of my experience to the recipes on this hub and answer your food questions.