It’s all in a word, healthy? No thanks. Nutritionally dense, sure, pass me a plate…

Imagine if you will, walking down a tree lined street. You know they are trees, they have roots, trunks, limbs, and leaves. Imagine also, if you will, that every other tree is hollow, yet the hollow ones have a sign hanging on them “Tree”.

You come to the end of the street and see a sign. The sign tells you that while all the trees are still trees, every other tree has been modified to make it a better tree. Some trees have had root modifications so that they won’t crack your driveway in twenty years, some, their sap making abilities removed because no one likes that mess on their new paint job, others, the leaves altered so that they won’t turn in the fall, no need to rake when you have these beauties.

While these modifications make it better for people with trees, does it really make a better tree?

Nutritionally dense food vs. health food, like the trees, “health food” often has things removed to make it healthy. Sometimes the removal is simply a smaller package to help us with portion sizes. Sometimes though, things are added because things like fiber really have no nutritional value at all, but fiber is so healthy, right?

It amazes me each time I see someone say “egg whites are healthier than eggs”. I often wonder if these folks have even looked up the nutritional values of only consuming egg whites as a healthy alternative.

From Google: 

  • Egg white
  • Egg white is the common name for the clear liquid contained within an egg. In chickens it is formed from the layers of secretions of the anterior section of the hen’s oviduct during the passage of the egg. Wikipedia
  • Nutrition Facts
    Egg, white, rawEgg, white, raw

    Amount Per 1 large (33 g)100 grams1 cup (243 g)1 large (33 g)

    Calories 17
  • % Daily Value*
    Total Fat 0.1 g 0%
    Saturated fat 0 g 0%
    Polyunsaturated fat 0 g
    Monounsaturated fat 0 g
    Cholesterol 0 mg 0%
    Sodium 55 mg 2%
    Potassium 54 mg 1%
    Total Carbohydrate 0.2 g 0%
    Dietary fiber 0 g 0%
    Sugar 0.2 g
    Protein 3.6 g 7%
    Vitamin A 0% Vitamin C 0%
    Calcium 0% Iron 0%
    Vitamin D 0% Vitamin B-6 0%
    Vitamin B-12 0% Magnesium 1%

    As you see from the chart, there is not much nutrition at all in an egg white, yet the masses tout egg whites as “healthy food”.

    Here, for the sake of comparison is the nutritional values for a whole egg, once again from Google: 

    • Egg
      Food
    • Eggs are laid by females of many different species, including birds, reptiles, amphibians, and fish, and have been eaten by humans for thousands of years.Wikipedia
    • Nutrition Facts
      Egg, boiledEgg, friedEgg, omeletEgg, poachedEgg, rawEgg, raw, gooseEgg, raw, quailEgg, scrambledEgg, white, rawEgg, yolk, rawEgg, boiled

      Amount Per 1 tbsp (8 g)1 large (50 g)100 grams1 cup, chopped (136 g)1 large (50 g)

      Calories 78
  • % Daily Value*
    Total Fat 5 g 7%
    Saturated fat 1.6 g 8%
    Polyunsaturated fat 0.7 g
    Monounsaturated fat 2 g
    Cholesterol 187 mg 62%
    Sodium 62 mg 2%
    Potassium 63 mg 1%
    Total Carbohydrate 0.6 g 0%
    Dietary fiber 0 g 0%
    Sugar 0.6 g
    Protein 6 g 12%
    Vitamin A 5% Vitamin C 0%
    Calcium 2% Iron 3%
    Vitamin D 11% Vitamin B-6 5%
    Vitamin B-12 10% Magnesium 1%
    IMG_20130311_135102

    Choc full of vitamins and minerals when consumed in the natural state, now please explain to me how dumping the yolks make them healthier?

    Maybe people equal the healthiness of a food to the calorie content? Who knows, maybe people are still “a’feared” of cholesterol and taking out the precious yolk with all it’s vitamins and minerals makes it healthier in their minds.

    The learned reader knows that “cholesterol is the most misunderstood and vilified molecule on the planet, and it is all nonsense. We’ve been totally mislead. Cholesterol is a MINOR player in heart disease, secondary to the things that REALLY cause heart disease. Your doctor– like most of them- is treating a number not a patient.” – Dr. Jonny Bowden Co-author of “The Great Cholesterol Myth ” (for the entire live chat transcript: https://www.facebook.com/lifescript.health/posts/10151310605806247 )

    On this, the 18th day of Diabetes Awareness Month, I’d like to tell you that just because a box of 100 calorie snacks says “healthy”, it doesn’t mean it is so. Rather than look for “heart healthy” seals and other marketing ploys, labels that can be purchased instead of earned, read the nutrition labels instead. Don’t fall for the “over processed maybefood” that has been “enriched” with vitamins and minerals, try some nutritionally dense real whole foods out on your taste buds and see how your meter likes it.

    Moving on to #Fitness30 a.k.a. Move Every Day November:

    November 17:

  • 20 lateral pull downs (10 reg + 10 behind the neck)
  • 10 bench press (40#)
  • 10 leg extensions (70#)
  • 10 leg curls (70#)
  • 40 squats (10+10+10+10)

One last thought before I begin my Monday morning: Do not rely on what someone’s idea of what “healthy” is. Make time to do the research yourself. Compare the nutritional labels, consume food without labels (your grocer’s produce section has lots to choose from), and make your own opinions on what healthy really is, to your own body.

We are each unique individuals with unique needs, forging our own paths not only puts us on path to what’s best for ourselves, it’s also pretty daggum rewarding once what works has been discovered.
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4 thoughts on “It’s all in a word, healthy? No thanks. Nutritionally dense, sure, pass me a plate…

  1. “and make your own opinions on what healthy really is, to your own body.”

    I love that! What feels good in my body may not in yours and what hurts you might not bother me at all. We’re all so different!

    I am a huge egg lover and would NEVER leave out the yolk…you may as well eat ice cubes for all the value that the white has.

    • Thanks 🙂 Yes, each and every one of us. It’s not easy, but we’ve just got to figure out what works on individual levels.

      I think I saw 8 “healthy egg white” recipes that day!!

    • Thank You, this post was inspired by all the egg white omelet and other “toss the yolk” accompanied by all the other “healthy” propaganda I’ve been seeing in my facebook newsfeed lately. Have a great day

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