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Eggs — a flock of health benefits

March 28, 2012
By Katie Wilhelmi , Marshall Independent

Crack open an egg today and receive some very important nutrients. Just one egg contains only 70 calories and provides six grams of appetite-suppressing high-quality protein and 13 different vitamins and minerals! The most notable nutrients in eggs include immune-enhancing Vitamin A and bone-building Vitamin D, plus a very absorbable form of heme iron.

At one time, it was thought that we should only consume three eggs per week due to increased risk of heart disease. However, recent studies have found that eating eggs in moderation as part of a low-fat diet shouldn't raise your risk of heart disease. In fact, according to new nutrient data from USDA, the average amount of cholesterol in a Grade A large egg is 185 mg, 14 percent lower than the 212 mg previously reported.

If you are a soon-to-be mom, take note! Eggs contain an abundance of choline. Research shows choline enhances brain development in babies and improves memory after birth. Also, new studies indicate choline may even help prevent memory loss associated with aging.

Ham-and-egg breakfast quesadilla

Made healthier with whole-wheat tortillas. Serve with fresh orange slices.

All you need:

4 large eggs

3 tbsp. skim milk

1/4 cup chopped green pepper

1 Roma tomato, chopped

1/4 cup roughly chopped spinach

2 oz. thin-sliced deli ham (2 to 3 slices), chopped*

4 whole wheat tortillas

3/4 cup 2 percent milk shredded mozzarella cheese, divided

All you do:

1. Whisk eggs and milk in a bowl. Pour mixture into a skillet and scramble over medium heat until nearly cooked. Add chopped green peppers and tomatoes and finish cooking.

2. Remove from heat and add chopped spinach and ham.

3. Heat a griddle pan over medium heat. Place 1 tortilla on pan and heat for 15 to 30 seconds. Flip over and add one-fourth of the egg mixture on one half of the tortilla. Sprinkle 3 tablespoons cheese over eggs. Fold tortilla in half. Cook for 1 to 2 minutes; flip and cook an additional 1 to 2 minutes. The tortilla should be golden brown and the cheese should be melted.

4. Repeat with the other three tortillas.

Yield: Serves 4

Nutrition facts: (for 1 serving): 370 calories, 15 g. Fat, 31 g. carbohydrates, 3 g. fiber, 6 g. saturated fat, 240 mg cholesterol, 26 g. protein, 1010 mg. sodium

*Choose a lower-sodium deli ham to reduce the sodium level.



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