In Focus: Eggs
Recently lots of you have asked questions, about eggs: so, it seemed like the right timing to put together a bit more information and answer some of your messages. Given it is also the Easter Holidays, the topic felt current! This blog has been written in conjunction with Bianca Parau*, our partner paediatric dietician: I am so excited to be working with Bianca and to have her expert opinion to add to our content.
Mostly, you wanted to know about eggs and weaning (i.e. when to introduce eggs), also some of you shared worries about risks with egg preparation (with little ones) and there have been a few requests about eggs and their nutritional value. I am hoping we can answer some of your questions and some useful links and further reading. Let me know if you find it helpful, I love hearing all your feedback.
Eggs are a superfood: loaded with protein and all 9 essential amino-acids. The body can’t make these amino acids; they must come from food. In their shell eggs are almost the perfect food; as they contain little bits of everything we need; lutein and some omegas, as well as a perfect balance of saturated and unsaturated fats. Eggs yolks are also one of the few foods that are a natural source of vitamin D (which we recently discussed on the blog).
I always love to offer kids fun facts about what their eating: to connect them with the benefits of healthy eating but also to inspire them to try new foods! Eggs aide memory and eye health, or sharp vision, due to their high vitamin A content. They are also good for hair and nails, due to the essential amino acids they contain. So eggs really are superhero foods!
Eggs and Weaning
Bianca, has also offered some great advice about eggs and when to introduce them:
- Hold off introducing eggs if there is any family history of egg allergy, or other food allergies. Speak to your health care professional about this and put together a bespoke plan
- If this isn't the case eggs are safe to introduce from 6 months + (doing so could help prevent a future allergy to eggs)
- When first introducing egg ensure that the both the yolk and white are well cooked and firm
- As you progress you can offer an egg with a runny yolk; if it is hen’s eggs with “British Lion Quality”. So make sure you are buying good quality eggs and check for the Red Lion Stamp.
- If the eggs are unmarked, or if you’re in any doubt, make sure that the yolk and white are cooked until solid, as this will kill any bacteria.
- Bianca, also suggested you offer egg in the same consistency as other foods given: i.e. a boiled egg then pureed, or scrambled egg then mashed with a fork etc
Buy the best quality eggs you can, as mentioned previously buy eggs with the Red Lion Stamp. I also buy organic eggs, as organic goes further than free-range eggs (check further reading for more info). The better the quality of the egg, the better the egg will taste, it's that simple. Whilst I am all about shopping on a sensible food budget eggs are not an area, where I would ever recommend paying less. My favourite two brands, with delicious eggs, are: Daylesford Organic Eggs, or Clarence Court Burford Brown Eggs (if your looking for recommendations).
Mimi's Bowl Egg Recipes
The great news is that once eggs are a part of your little one's diet they are incredibly versatile: they can be eaten on their own (in various forms) but also can act as binder, raising agent and glaze in cooking. They are also incredibly quick to cook, after a long day, or even car journey. We have a family tradition of omelettes on Sunday evening, as their quick, filling and a great way of incorporating any leftover vegetables from the weekend. A win win for any tired parent...
I am posting a few new egg recipes this week, but you'll find lots of my favourite egg recipes and other 'egg-cellent' ideas on the @mimis.bowl Instagram feed:
- Oven Baked Eggs
- Family Style Frittata
- Mini Egg Muffins
- 60s Style Avocado Stuffed Eggs
- Eggy Bread
- Healthy Egg Fried Rice
- Kedgeree with Eggs
Further Reading & Useful Links
This blog post was written in conjunction with paediatric dietitian Bianca Parau. Bianca offers expert advice and nutritional guidance to children and their families. Her NHS clinical role at Chelsea & Westminster Hospital includes a specialist multidisciplinary feeding clinic, for children with eating problems, often resulting from a history of gastrointestinal problems and food allergy
visit https://www.lavie-nutrition.com for more information