We have regularly talked about the importance of following a healthy diet in order to avoid long-term health problems and maintain a good physique. However, there are a lot of misconceptions about what a good diet actually entails.
Some people still think that certain healthy foods like eggs should be avoided. You will want to keep reading to dispel these myths.
Egg Salad Can Actually Be Healthy
Let’s admit it, eggs are very popular, and most of us love having them for breakfast, brunch, lunch, and even dinner. They are incredibly versatile, showing up in many different ways including omelets, hard-boiled, scrambled, deviled, fried, poached, and so on. Not to mention their important role in both sweet and savory recipes! Since the beginning of time, people have been nourishing themselves with eggs and enjoying them as they are so easy to use.
But eggs had an undeserved bad reputation in the past. It was recommended for the population to avoid eating egg yolks because they contain dietary cholesterol, and that was believed to negatively impact blood cholesterol. In 2015, the U.S. government stated that it was going to consider withdrawing its long-standing warning against eggs. However, the stigma against them still remains.
The truth is that the latest research contradicts that idea, so now whole eggs, including the yolk, are recommended for a healthy diet. This way, you don’t miss out on the naturally contained vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants that are so wonderful for your body.
Eggs are healthy (they are actually a superfood). But what about egg salad? Let’s take a look to see if this food has the nutritional benefits, you are looking for.
Different ingredients that go in egg salad
There are different kinds of egg salads based on the ingredients, and they can vary from recipe to recipe. The classic version consists of hard-boiled eggs, lots of mayonnaise, and some kind of seasoning, like salt, pepper and even mustard or hot sauce.
Are warning bells going off in your head?
Mayonnaise is not considered a very healthy food, which probably won’t come as a surprise. Here are some negative things to know about mayo:
- It’s very high in calories
- It contains lots of sodium
- Store-bought varieties can include highly processed oils
- It can easily become a breeding ground for bacteria if not stored properly
A single serving of egg salad consists of 2 chopped eggs and at least 2 tablespoons of mayonnaise. If you look at the calorie intake, you are ingesting more than 500 calories, which is a lot!
Luckily, there are lots of ways to tweak the typical recipe. Not only can you make it better for your body, you can also give it new and exciting flavors you’ll like even more than the original.
How to make egg salad healthier (and more delicious!)
To make egg salads better for your body, including your taste buds, you must follow some guidelines and use specific ingredients to enjoy the optimum benefits of the salad. The key lies in using healthier ingredients. Food Network has a recipe worth looking into, but we have some other tips as well.
- Use organic, pasture-raised, cage-free eggs to make a healthier and more humane egg salad. Also look for the omega-3 enriched type.
- Instead of mayonnaise, use plain Greek yogurt as a substitute. It’s much lower in calories contains protein and probiotics, among other benefits.
- If you must use mayonnaise, make your own at home. You can use healthier oils, such as olive oil or avocado oil, as these are much better than soybean oil.
- You can even opt for a completely mayonnaise-free version of egg salad and use homemade olive oil vinaigrette instead.
- Add fresh herbs and vegetables to boost the nutrition value of the egg salad. Try parsley, green onions, shallots, and red pepper.
- Add celery for extra crunch and vitamin K.
- Add seaweed, a form of algae, to your salad to boost the nutritious value. The algae are available in different colors and can be beneficial for your health.
- Give your egg salad a Mediterranean vibe by adding capers and chopped anchovies, extra-virgin olive oil, thinly sliced cucumbers, sliced black olives, and freshly chopped parsley.
- Add chopped or mashed avocado and mix it into the salad. Throw in some diced tomatoes and grilled chicken to complete the nutrition.
- Emphasize the “salad” aspect and serve the egg salad over a bed of spinach, arugula, or other greens.
- Control your portion size. Serve the amount you want to eat on a plate, rather than eating it straight out of the bowl.
- As a precaution, avoid using raw or undercooked eggs in the salad or mayo to curb the risk of Salmonella food poisoning,
Egg salad is indeed a versatile food option because of its simplicity and the advantage of the infinite possibilities with the recipe. It’s easy to upgrade your egg salad and make it healthier.
Essential facts regarding eggs and health
Despite the widespread popularity of eggs, you may not be well familiar with the lesser-known facts about eggs.
- Eggs are highly nutritious. They’ve got essential amino acids, B vitamins, choline, Vitamin D, and antioxidants, to name a few.
- Both the white part and the yolk have about 3 grams of protein each.
- Egg yolk and egg white differ in calories as a single yolk contains 60 calories while the single egg white provides just 15 calories.
- This food is very satiating, so you feel full and aren’t tempted to snack later.
- The eggshell color doesn’t represent any health advantages or disadvantages, the color of the eggshell is only due to the genetics of the hen.
- Brown eggs are usually more costly than white eggs, not because they provide better nutrition but because they are laid by bigger breeds of chickens that need more food.
- Brown eggshells are the same thickness as white, and the young chickens lay eggs with thicker and harder shells as compared to old chickens.
- Research shows that moderate egg consumption is not associated with any health risks and is safe for the heart in normal healthy adults.
- People with diabetes and heart disease risk may need to limit egg consumption to three yolks per week. Those who face difficulty controlling LDL cholesterol may be advised to choose foods made with egg whites. Speak with your doctor about your diet if you have a medical condition.
Eggs can be an optimal choice for healthy eating, but you need to keep in mind the spectrum of food choices you make throughout the day (don’t forget to eat your vegetables!), along with including physical activity in your daily routine and maintaining a healthy lifestyle.