Next time you’re ordering a healthy raw salad, it’s worth asking for that cooked egg add-on while you’re at it too, according to American University research that has found it can boost the antioxidants you absorb almost four-fold. Here are more details
Researchers at the Purdue University in American have found that lipids (natural fats) contained in whole cooked eggs boost the amount of carotinoids (powerful antioxidant nutrients found especially in red, yellow and orange veggies) if you eat them at the same time.
Study volunteers who ate a raw mixed vegetable salad with three eggs and three grams of canola oil absorbed on average 3.8 times more carotinoids than others who ate just the salad and oil. A third volunteer group who ate just one and a half eggs also showed a boost in absorption.
“Eggs, a nutrient-rich food containing essential amino acids, unsaturated fatty acids and B vitamins, may be used to increase the nutritive value of vegetables, which are under consumed by the majority of people living in the United States,” said Jung Eun Kim, a researcher in the university’s Department of Nutrition Science. The same can probably be said for many people across the western world too!
While you’ll also find carotinoid-boosting lipids in things like salad dressings, those tend to be high in kilojoules and are are easy to over-use. Eggs are instead a wholesome, natural, easy-to-order of sterol lipids. If you’re vegan, you’ll find plant sterols (in small amounts) in things like nuts, seeds, legumes and vegetable oils.
It’s also worth noting that this research was partly funded by the American Egg Board Egg Nutrition Centre, as well as the US National Institutes of Health and Purdue Ingestive Behaviour Research Centre.