Why do we eat eggs? (nutritional and economic value)

In this short article, we will provide an answer to the question ”Why do we eat eggs?” and discuss the nutritional value of eggs.

Why do we eat eggs?

Eggs are consumed for their remarkable nutritional benefits. Often hailed as nature’s multivitamin, they house a diverse array of vital nutrients, including protein, vitamins, and minerals such as selenium. Notably, eggs are rich in choline, crucial for brain health (1 and 2).

Furthermore, eggs offer notable health perks, from reducing heart disease, stroke, and diabetes risks to potentially enhancing memory and cognitive function (3).

Their nutrient density, combined with culinary versatility, solidifies eggs as a dietary staple, contributing significantly to overall health.

What are the main nutrients in chicken eggs?

Eggs are a valuable source of animal protein, essential vitamins, minerals, and beneficial compounds like high-quality protein, healthy fats, lutein, zeaxanthin, antioxidants, and choline (4).

They are an affordable and nutrient-rich whole food. With its high biological value, the body efficiently utilizes almost all of the protein found in eggs, making it comparable to breast milk as an exemplary protein source (4).

The bioactive components present in eggs can impact pathways related to both inflammation and anti-inflammation, which are significant in the development of various diseases (4).

Are eggs rich in proteins?

Yes, eggs are rich in proteins. They are considered a great source of high-quality proteins that are easily digestible and have high bioavailability to the body (4 and 5).

Eggs provide essential amino acids needed for protein synthesis, muscle maintenance, and recovery. The egg yolk, in particular, contains some healthy fats that are beneficial for muscle growth and overall health (4).

Why are eggs considered a healthy addition to a balanced diet?

Eggs, being rich in nutrients, are generally easier to digest compared to other protein-rich foods (1).

Overall, egg consumption tends to have a favourable or neutral impact on blood pressure levels in adults (1).

It’s worth noting that scientific evidence confirms the safety of consuming up to 1 whole egg per day for the majority of the population (2).

Therefore, it is advisable to maintain a balanced diet and remember that eggs can be a highly nutritious food choice.

How can eggs be better included in the human diet?

Eggs have held cultural significance, with historical practices of coating them in fat or oil for prolonged preservation, a method validated by modern research. Another tactic to prolong shelf life involves hard boiling, its effectiveness is contingent on temperature and shell treatments (6).

Nonetheless, cultural perceptions about egg digestibility, hygiene, and affordability can impede their consumption. Recent studies alleviate concerns about allergies and cholesterol related to egg consumption (6).

To amplify the value of eggs in diets, policies might facilitate cost-efficient egg trade, support local egg production, and accentuate their nutritional benefits for marginalized groups (6).

For economically disadvantaged households, eggs offer a nearby remedy, harbouring untapped potential to combat prevailing undernutrition challenges (6).

What are the risks related to eating eggs?

Eating eggs can offer numerous nutritional benefits, but there are also potential risks associated with them. Here’s a breakdown of three key risks: allergies, diet considerations, and foodborne diseases.

Allergies: Eggs are one of the common allergenic foods, especially in children. Egg allergies typically result from an immune response to proteins found in egg whites or yolks.

Symptoms can range from mild skin reactions, digestive discomfort, and respiratory issues to severe anaphylaxis. Those with egg allergies need to carefully avoid any egg-containing products and be vigilant about ingredient labels (1).

Diet considerations: Eggs are a source of high-quality protein, healthy fats, vitamins, and minerals. However, dietary risks may arise due to factors such as cholesterol content and individual dietary preferences (2 and 5).

Some people limit egg consumption due to concerns about cholesterol, even though current research suggests that moderate egg consumption doesn’t significantly impact blood cholesterol for most individuals (2 and 5). 

Foodborne diseases: Eggs are susceptible to contamination by pathogens like Salmonella, which can cause foodborne illnesses. Proper handling and cooking are crucial to mitigate this risk (7).

Consuming raw or undercooked eggs can lead to bacterial infections, causing symptoms like stomach cramps, diarrhoea, vomiting, and fever (7).

To reduce this risk, eggs should be stored properly in the refrigerator, and dishes containing eggs should be cooked thoroughly until both the whites and yolks are firm (2).

In summary, while eggs provide valuable nutrients, it’s important to be aware of potential risks. Allergies can trigger severe reactions, requiring strict avoidance.

Dietary considerations may involve cholesterol concerns or adherence to specific diets. To prevent foodborne diseases, proper handling, storage, and cooking of eggs are essential to minimize the risk of contamination.

Other FAQs about Eggs that you may be interested in.

How many eggs can you eat a day?

Can you cook eggs in a pot?


In this short article, we provided an answer to the question, ‘Why do we eat eggs?’ Because they have remarkable nutritional benefits. They are an economical and nutrient-dense whole food, boasting a high biological value that ensures the body efficiently utilizes nearly all the protein they contain.