Official new data shows that today’s eggs contain more than 70% more vitamin D and double the amount of selenium than when previous analyses were carried out 30 years ago.
Today’s eggs also contain around 20% less fat, more than 20% less saturated fat, around 13% fewer calories and more than 10% less cholesterol than previous surveys suggested.
An average medium egg now contains 66 calories (compared to the previous figure of 78 calories) and an average large egg 77 calories (previously 91 calories).
The data, produced by the UK Foodcomp project consortium and funded by the Department of Health (DOH) as part of its rolling programme of nutrient analysis surveys, provides the first update on the nutrient content of eggs since the 1980s.
The increased selenium content of eggs is also of public health significance as UK selenium intakes have declined in recent years alongside a switch from North American to European wheat.
Selenium is important in protecting cellular components such as DNA, lipids and proteins against oxidation.
The new analyses reveal that an average medium egg now contains around 177mg of cholesterol, although it is now acknowledged that cholesterol in foods such as eggs does not have a significant effect on blood cholesterol in most people.
Source: British Egg Information Service