In Honor of National Egg Day, Let’s Take a Look at the Health Benefits of Free – Range Hen Eggs
The old adage “you are what you eat” holds true when considering the nutritional value of eggs. Since the 1970s, studies have indicated that eggs from hens with access to pasture are better for you than eggs from birds kept in cages. Free-range hens that eat a healthy, natural diet pass on that benefit to you in the form of more nutritious eggs.
In 2007, Mother Earth News magazine decided to test the nutritional value of pastured eggs from 14 different farms.
They were measured in a lab, then compared to the USDA standard conventional egg.
The study found that eggs from pastured hens were more nutritious than the conventional eggs. They were higher in vitamin A, E and omega-3s, as well as lower in cholesterol and saturated fat. A published study by Cambridge University Press on pastured eggs produced similar results. Another study from the Institute of Agricultural and Nutritional Sciences showed that free-range eggs, laid by hens allowed to roam in the sun, contained three to four times the amount of vitamin D than the eggs of hens that were raised indoors.
Spend some time at your local farmers market and talk with your farmers about their hens and how they are raised. The happiest and healthiest are the ones that eat an organic diet (non-GMO) and are free to forage on plants (free of pesticides) and insects. You will be amazed at the difference in color and taste.
While you are at the farmers market pick up the items for this delicious Vegetable Frittata