Which Part of an Egg Has the Biggest Amount of Protein?

Raw Egg on the Frying Pan, Close Up
Yolks have protein, but they aren't especially the healthiest part of the egg. (Image: DAJ/amana images/Getty Images)

You’ll get plenty of protein no matter which part of the egg you enjoy -- the white or the yolk. Egg whites, however, have a bit more protein and aren’t full of unhealthy components found only in the yolk.

Whites vs. Yolks

If you separate a whole large egg and pull out the yolk, you’ll get about 3.6 grams of protein from the whites. The yolk of a large egg has 2.7 grams of protein. So if you eat the entire large egg, you’ll get 6.3 grams of protein in all.

Protein in the Diet

Ideally, somewhere between 10 and 35 percent of your caloric intake should come from protein, states the Dietary Guidelines for Americans 2010. Because you get 4 calories from a gram of protein, you should aim for 50 to 175 grams of protein for an average 2,000-calorie diet. Having one egg white takes up 2 to 7 percent of your protein needs for the day, while a single egg yolk accounts for just 1 to 5 percent.

Concerns

While yolks are packed with more than 40 percent of the overall protein content of the entire egg, they’re also loaded with saturated fat and cholesterol. Limit your saturated fat intake to less than 10 percent of your calories -- 22 grams for a 2,000-calorie diet -- and get no more than 300 milligrams of cholesterol a day. One large egg yolk provides 1.6 grams of saturated fat and 184 milligrams of cholesterol. Whites, on the other hand, are saturated fat and cholesterol free.

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