Saturday, 18 March 2017

Egg White Nutrition Facts

Egg whites are unarguably the gold standard of all protein rich foods. Besides protein, they are also good sources of vitamins, minerals and carbohydrates. The fact that most dietary protein supplements are derived from it, is testimony to its reputation as the staple diet of bodybuilding athletes. If you the reader plan to join their ilk in the near future, a knowledge of the nutrient content offered by egg whites would be helpful. Along with benefits, outlined in what follows, are the inherent over-consumption risks, which must be taken into consideration.

Nutrition Facts About Egg White

Egg white, also known as albumen or glair, is the clear liquid envelope, surrounding the yolk of unfertilized and fertilized eggs. It starts out as cytoplasm of the unicellular egg and is meant to provide nutrition to the embryo. It is rich in nutrients and makes for an ideal natural nutritional supplement.

Nearly 90% of the egg white is water. It constitutes more than two-thirds of the whole egg weight.
Other than water, rest of the white content is made up of proteins (10.9%), minerals (0.36%), vitamins (0.0001%), fats (0.17%) and sugar (0.71%).

Egg white contains vitamin B6 and B12, as well as riboflavin and folate. Riboflavin is needed by the body for cell growth. Folate is required to maintain heart health.

About 100 gm egg white will supply about 52 Kcal of energy. These calories are derived from proteins (91%), carbohydrates (6%) and fats (3%).

Egg whites have almost zero cholesterol, but are loaded with proteins. It is the most standard high protein/low fat source available.

One large egg white (33 gm) will supply about 17 Kcal of energy, with 3.6 gm proteins.
It contains about 40 different types of proteins, each highly beneficial to the human body and many minerals like zinc, iron, copper, phosphorus, calcium and potassium. All these minerals are necessary for the body to have healthy fingernails, bones and teeth.

In its natural state, egg white is a transparent and clear fluid. It becomes 'white' only after it's cooked. The change in color is attributed to a chemical change, wherein, the long amino acid chains are broken and a more rigid protein structure is formed. This process is called denaturation.
Egg white mainly contains the protein ovalbumin, which plays a big role in enzyme metabolism of the body and works as a storage protein.

Due to the high sodium content in egg whites (about 166 mg per 100 gm), it is recommended to be consumed in limited quantities. High sodium intake increases vulnerability to heart disease. The recommended daily intake of sodium is 1500 mg per day and therefore, discretion should be exercised when deciding the daily quantity of egg white consumption.

Over-consumption of egg whites can cause biotin deficiency. It can also lead to constipation and flatulence (release of excess gas, primarily sulfur). The deficiency is caused by the protein avidin contained in egg white which strongly binds with biotin. In cooked form, the impact of this protein on biotin is lesser. Ergo it is recommended that you consult a qualified nutritionist or medical practitioner if your diet requires high egg white intake.

The risk of salmonella infection through egg whites is lesser in cooked form. Therefore raw consumption is not recommended.

You can have egg white in hard-boiled, scrambled or even fried form, as an omelet. The nutritional value of eggs diminishes only slightly, after cooking. They still retain much of their nutritional value in cooked form. Considering the sum total of all these egg white nutrition facts, we can safely conclude that they make for an ideal addition to your daily breakfast menu, when consumed in the right proportion. 

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