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‘Free-from’ Benefits from Egg Inclusion

The ‘free from’ crowd among consumers is growing—the avid label readers, the shoppers who peruse only the outer perimeter of the store and look for foods free from preservatives, GMOs or food free from ingredients that seem artificial. They also are looking for foods free from gluten.

In 2009 a research group at Mayo Clinic compared blood samples to determine if improved diagnoses were causing the increased number of celiacs or if more people were actually contracting the disease. The team discovered that it is five times more common than fifty years ago. While the numbers for true celiacs are increasing, the Hartman Group, a Seattle-based research firm, says at least half of consumer purchasing gluten free product don’t suffer from celiac. Regardless of the reason for purchase, Mintel projects the gluten free market will see continued growth, with sales estimates of $7 billion for 2012 and $8 billion for 2013.

Creating foods that will appeal to the free-from crowd requires a look at simple, yet highly functional ingredients. Eggs play into a free-from purchasing plan naturally. Egg ingredient functionality and nutritional content both contribute to the creation of gluten-free foods.

The typical blend of flours used in gluten-free bread, for example, contains far less protein than wheat-based breads, affecting the bread composition. Since 2010 scientists at Kansas State University have experimented with egg proteins in gluten free bread because the high-quality, complete proteins in eggs form foam that entraps air. Eggs, when used with gluten-free flours, help simulate the wheat flour functionality in bread. Early research appears to suggest optimal results are obtained through the use of 25% whole liquid egg product, on a flour basis. Other research indicates that egg ingredient usage might also help prevent staling.

In sweet applications, such as cookies, cakes or muffins, egg proteins help contribute to a lighter, more fluffy texture.  Gluten-free pasta benefits not only from egg proteins, to help bind the ingredients together, but the egg yolk pigment, xanthophyll, a carotenoid with a yellow-orange tone, which helps contribute rich color to the pasta. “Free-from” foods don’t have to be devoid of taste, nutrition, form or function. Egg ingredients contribute to all of these.  Visit http://www.aeb.org/food-manufacturers/functional-properties-uses for incredible application ideas.

2013-04-29 15:03:32
 

Sunshine from Food

There could be more than one reason why a certain style of cooked breakfast egg is called “sunnyside up.” The friendly yellow yolk contains approximately 41 IUs of vitamin D, the vitamin commonly associated with sunlight, because vitamin D is produced by your skin in response to exposure to ultraviolet radiation from natural sunlight.

This can be in short supply in the wintertime, particularly in far northern climates as the sun doesn’t rise high enough in the sky to deliver this beneficial effect to anyone north of Atlanta (U.S. News and World Report). A common misconception is that vitamin D benefits can be derived from sitting in a sunlit window, but vitamin D does not pass through glass. You can however, improve vitamin D intake while sitting at the table, as certain foods, such as eggs, can help provide it for your body.

Vitamin D may help combat the winter blues.  But vitamin D does so much more. It may help in preventing osteoporosis, prostate and breast cancers. Studies have shown that vitamin D may also help keep blood sugar levels under control by increasing the release of insulin, and lower blood levels of vitamin D have been associated with diabetes. Vitamin D performs normal functions in the body to help maintain blood levels of calcium and phosphorus. Vitamin D in fact, aids in calcium absorption, which helps keep bones strong and healthy. Recent research even suggests vitamin D may provide protection from hypertension and several autoimmune diseases.

Heart deaths are even linked to vitamin D deficiency. Research from the Archives of Internal Medicine show people with the lowest vitamin D levels have more than double the risk of dying from heart disease and other causes.

The government recommends 200 IUs daily up to age 50, recommending increasing amounts for each decade that follows. Formulating products with whole egg or yolk products can help consumers reach their daily goal of vitamin D. Visit http://www.aeb.org/food-manufacturers/functional-properties-uses for innovative formulations.

2013-04-15 16:46:11
 

Eggs, A Low Glycemic Food

A new study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition demonstrates a correlation between consumption of foods with a high glycemic index and the development of type-2 diabetes. Still other studies show that a breakfast containing low glycemic foods can help with satiety and weight loss. Not only should consumers be concerned about calories, blood sugar is another important consideration.

An egg straight from the shell contains no carbohydrates, and therefore will not raise blood sugar levels. Certain egg products, such as frozen or liquid whole egg, yolks or whites contain a negligible amount of carbohydrates, or slightly above one percent of its total ingredient composition, to assist with functionality. Still other egg products might contain small amounts of sugar, for the same reason, to improve functional and physical properties. However, the majority of egg ingredients contain neither of these, yet supply highly digestible protein to aid with muscle building, satiety and a host of other benefits.

The egg also is one of the few natural sources of vitamin D, in addition to choline, and a number of other vitamins and minerals, including small amounts of lutein and zeaxanthin. Egg products are naturally low in sodium and egg yolks contain just a trace amount of trans fats. Nothing makes a better choice for a start to the day than the filling protein an egg breakfast provides. Egg products provide positive benefits for those looking to formulate foods for weight management and blood sugar level control.

To learn more about incredible eggs and their role in weight management, visit Egg Nutrition Center, www.ENC-Online.org.

2013-04-01 05:00:23