CHICAGO, Oct. 6, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — Eggs have always been a nutritional powerhouse, and now a recent scientific report released by the U.S. Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee (DGAC) has affirmed that eggs play a crucial role in infant development, prenatal health and overall health at any age.
The nation’s top nutrition experts recommend eggs as a fundamental first food for babies because eggs are one of the most concentrated sources of choline, a nutrient that is crucial for brain health and development. Additionally, the scientific report advised that early introduction of eggs, when a baby is developmentally ready for solid foods, around 4-6 months of age, may also help reduce the risk of developing an egg allergy.
“The first 1,000 days of a child’s life is a time of rapid growth and development. In fact, 90%* of brain growth actually occurs before kindergarten,” states Liz Shaw, MS, RDN, CLT, CPT, bestselling author of “Fertility Foods Cookbook” and maternal health expert. “Eggs contain eight essential nutrients, including high-quality protein and choline, which are important during this time of rapid brain development. Just one large egg provides the daily choline needs for babies and toddlers, while two large eggs will meet more than half of choline needs for pregnant moms.”
Choline has been identified as a key nutrient necessary for brain development by the American Academy of Pediatrics, but research shows that 92% of pregnant women do not get enough choline and most are not aware it is essential for infant brain development. New and emerging evidence also suggests adequate choline intake during pregnancy, and possibly lactation, may have lasting brain health benefits that extend into school-age years.
As a versatile ingredient, eggs offer the opportunity to feed babies and toddlers foods in different textures and forms that can help develop dexterity and hand-eye coordination, as well as skills to learn how to chew and swallow. Plus, there are plenty of ways to enjoy eggs throughout the day beyond the basic boiled, scrambled or sunny-side-up. For example, baby-friendly Broccoli and Cauliflower Cheddar Quinoa Bites pack in nutrients in a convenient finger food for a new eater and are a quick breakfast, lunch or dinner that can be prepared in advance for baby and the rest of the family.
Find more kid-friendly recipes and advice about introducing eggs to your youngest family members at EggNutritionCenter.org.
About the American Egg Board (AEB)
Home of the Incredible Egg, the AEB is the U.S. egg industry’s national commodity marketing board. The AEB’s mission is to increase demand for eggs and egg products through research, education and promotion. The Egg Nutrition Center is the science and education division of the AEB. The AEB is located in Chicago, Ill. For more, visit AEB.org.
*Brown, T. T., & Jernigan, T. L. (2012). Brain development during the preschool years. Neuropsychology Review, 22, 313-333 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3511633/