Why eating eggs for breakfast really is the best way to start the day

By Ana Morales

Photo: Alice Pasqual / Unsplash

Do eggs actually benefit hair and skin? Is the yolk bad for you? What are the healthiest way to eat them? All of your burning breakfast questions answered below, by the nutritional experts

Eating eggs for breakfast isn’t a groundbreaking idea. Not only are eggs high in protein and low in calories, they’re also easy to prepare, widely available, and immensely satisfying. But for some reason, including eggs in my usual morning meal hasn’t been so obvious; mostly because time isn’t always (okay, never) on my side first thing in the morning. But after enjoying several yummy egg dishes over some leisurely weekend breakfasts (okay, late brunches) lately – and feeling way less hungry all day afterwards, I realised that maybe I should make a bigger effort to include them in weekday diet, too.


The benefits of eating eggs for breakfast

While it isn’t always easy to whip up an omelet when you’re rushing to be in the office at 8 am, the benefits of eating eggs in the morning really do last well into the afternoon. When I make breakfasts with eggs, I immediately notice the benefits—and I'm not just talking about the feeling of satiety in the moment, but also the sustained feeling of satiety throughout the morning. In other words, when I eat eggs for breakfast, I don’t end up eating unhealthy snacks – or any snacks at all! – between meals.

I also experience mental clarity and energy that gets me through busy days. These are sensations that experts endorse. As nutritionist Leticia Carrera points out, “eggs reduce fatigue and improve physical and mental productivity.” Nutritionist Paula Martín Clares agrees. “They keep us healthy at any age, active and energetic throughout the day. In addition, they improve memory and help us take care of our eyesight,” she writes in her book The Health of Your Skin Is In What You Eat.

But among all the positive statements about eggs, perhaps the one made by nutritionist Boticaria García in her bestselling book Your Brain is Hungry, is my favourite. “Eggs provide the highest quality protein while being cheap and very versatile, with the advantage that they are also delicious and always crave-able. Let’s forget the old beliefs that you should not eat more than three eggs a week. If the technique is appropriate–and we do not accompany them with foods high in trans fats such as bacon – there is no problem in consuming them even daily,” she writes.

Best Oslo brunch spots - Kafeteria August

Photo: Kafeteria August, Oslo

Is it true that egg yolk is not good for you?

Although some experts advise making quiche with egg whites only, the reality is that the nutritional benefits of an egg are greater if you eat the whole thing. For example, an egg yolk has proteins, choline (which is closely linked to emotional well-being), iron, and zinc. And the white, according to Martín Clares, provides between 10 and 20% of the recommended daily amount of vitamins A, D, E and K. In addition, they have phosphorus, vitamin B12 and promote muscle and immune health. The sum truly is greater than the parts.

Does eating eggs benefit hair and skin?

In this list of benefits that this food counts, less has been said about the presence of biotin. According to Steven Walker, a specialist at Hospital Capilar, eggs help you have silkier hair thanks to their high content of biotin, also recognised as vitamin B7 or B8, which is essential for various metabolic processes closely related to hair health. Biotin improves hair structure and promotes healthy growth.

You just have to cook them – which, duh, because who wants to eat raw eggs anyway? But the ick-factor of raw eggs is not the only reason to break out the skillet: “It must be taken into account that the egg must be cooked since raw eggs contain avidin, which inhibits the absorption of biotin in the intestine,” Walker explains.

Is it better to eat organic eggs?

Eggs can be eaten almost anywhere in the world, but when it comes to including them on the shopping list, Carrera advises that you buy organic. It is also important, she points out, to look at the label to ensure your eggs come from healthy, free-range chickens. In Spain, for example “more than 40 million chickens never see sunlight, and live in overcrowded conditions, subject to all kinds of ailments and diseases.” And the life of your average chicken is pretty bad in the United States, too. So yes, buying free-rage, cage-free, organic eggs is definitely a good idea.

What’s the healthiest way to eat eggs for breakfast?

The general recommendation is to avoid fried eggs since they have a higher calorie content, and instead prioritise cooked, poached, or scrambled versions. Omelettes are also fine – as long as they aren’t filled with cheese and excess butter. All that said, here are a few experts suggestion for the most balanced and health ways to include eggs in your breakfast today.

  1. Grilled on toasted bread with cottage cheese, salmon, or avocado.
    2 Scrambled and served with rye or spelt bread, avocado, and crushed tomato.
  2. Cooked, scrambled, or in an omelet accompanied by serrano ham, salmon, or turkey.
  3. In an omelet with spinach, tomato, onion, and goat cheese or feta.
  4. In the form of a “muffin” made by mixing 4 tablespoons of oats, 2 egg whites and one yolk, a small apple, and cinnamon. Just put the mixture in the microwave for 4 minutes and you have a sweet, protein-packed treat.
  5. Grilled in a whole wheat tortilla wrap with hummus and oregano.

Article originally published in Vogue Spain,