While eggs are back on the good-for-you list, they are not a magical weight-loss food. However, as protein-rich fare, they may offer some benefits that can help you reach your weight goals when part of a healthy and balanced diet. Consult your doctor to discuss how hard-boiled eggs fit into your health plan.
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Hard-Boiled Egg Goodness
Hard-boiled eggs are rich in protein and a good source of a number of health-promoting nutrients. One large hard-boiled egg has 78 calories, 6 grams of protein and 5 grams of total fat. The same large egg also meets more than 20 percent of the daily value for selenium. The egg is also a source of vitamins A and D, many of the B vitamins, choline, phosphorus and zinc.
Eggs also up your intake of the carotenoids lutein and zeaxanthin. Although the research is very preliminary, a 2013 study published in Nutrients reports an inverse relationship exists between the amount of these carotenoids in body tissues and obesity.
Losing Weight With Hard-Boiled Eggs
Hard-boiled eggs may be helpful to you when you're trying to losing weight because of their high-quality protein content. Eggs are often used as the "gold standard" when determining quality of protein in food. A 2008 article published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition notes that increasing your protein intake on a calorie-restricted diet may offer a number of benefits. Protein is more satiating than carbs or fat, which may aid in hunger control on your lower-calorie diet. Getting more calories from protein may also give your metabolism a boost, say the authors of the article. Additionally, the protein in the eggs may make it easier for you to retain your muscle while you lose the fat.
Precautions With Hard-Boiled Eggs
Hard-boiled eggs are high in cholesterol, with 186 milligrams in one large egg, all from the yolk of the egg. Cholesterol in food does not have as much of an impact on the cholesterol in your body as previously thought, according to the Harvard School of Public Health, and it's OK for healthy people to eat hard-boiled eggs regularly. However, if you have a history of high cholesterol, heart disease or diabetes, check with your doctor before you start eating eggs every day for weight loss. For those with these conditions, it's generally recommended that you limit your intake of egg yolks to no more than three a week, says HSPH.
Tips and Serving Suggestions
The convenience and versatility of hard-boiled eggs help make them a healthy addition to your weight-loss diet. They make a good protein choice at breakfast with whole-wheat toast and fruit, and eggs also make a convenient and filling snack any time throughout the day. Slice the cooked eggs and use them to top a mixed green salad or baked potato at lunch. Chopped hard-boiled eggs also add texture to homemade meatballs.
Cooked eggs, when kept in the shell, stay fresh for up to a week in your refrigerator. Eat peeled eggs the same day.
A Word About Calories
Even though hard-boiled eggs offer their own benefits in helping you lose unwanted pounds, if you eat too many overall calories, you'll cancel out those benefits. Weight loss requires that you eat fewer calories than your body needs. To lose 1 pound of fat a week, you need to eat 500 calories less than your usual intake. For example, if you normally eat 2,500 calories a day, to lose weight you need to limit your daily intake to 2,000 calories, including the calories that come from the eggs.
- U.S. Department of Agriculture Nutrient Database: Egg, Whole, Cooked, Hard-Boiled
- The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition: Protein, Weight Management and Satiety
- Harvard School of Public Health: Eggs and Heart Disease
- Health: 8 Excellent Recipes for Hard-Boiled Eggs
- FamilyDoctor.org: What It Takes to Lose Weight
- The University of Michigan: Healing Foods Pyramid
- Nutrients: The Relationship Between Lutein and Zeaxanthin Status and Body Fat
- American Optometric Association: Lutein and Zeaxanthin
- Incredible Egg: Egg Storage: How Long Do Eggs Last?