The Truth about Bunnies and Eggs
“Is the Easter Bunny real or just some dude dressed in a costume?”
This question, posed by my 7-year-old stepson, is how yesterday evening began. My back was turned toward him as I pulled food coloring out of the cabinet so we could begin our adventures in egg coloring that I had told him would commence once baby was down for the night (7PM). And, so, there I was, frozen, not knowing exactly how to answer.
“What do you think?” was the best thing I could come up with as he stood there waiting.
“Well, my teacher says he’s real. That’s her hypothesis…her educated guess. Is she right?”
Kids?! Okay…hmmm…should I lie? What would his mom, his grandparents, his favorite auntie want me to say? (And, if any of you are reading this post, please fill me in.)
“What about your mom? What does she say about the Easter Bunny?”
“I’ve never asked her,” he replied quickly. I received the same answer when I asked about the opinions of Dad, Nana, Papa, and Auntie.
“Well, what do they say about Santa Claus? Have you ever asked them if Santa Claus is real?”
“No, I don’t have to. Santa Claus is real. But, we’re talking about the Easter Bunny. What about him?” Okay, so back to square one. I started picking up the food colors one by one and sort of shuffling them around, pretending I was too busy to answer him.
“Huh? Is he real or not?”
“What about other kids? What do they think?”
“They say he is real. Is he?”
I took the easy way out. “I don’t think I’m the best person to ask. Do you want to make these eggs or what?”
And, we did. Score one for stepmom. Sort of. At least I diverted his attention successfully and got out of it.
Before the above took place, I had decided to blog today on the health benefits of eggs. But, before I jump in, I thought I’d throw a question out to readers of this blog. That is, if you are out there? How did you, do you, will you approach the truth about the Easter Bunny, Santa Claus, and the Tooth Fairy?
But now, for the meat of today’s post (or the protein at least): eggs. For those of us who celebrate Easter, eggs are on our mind this weekend! Coloring them, cooking them for Easter brunch, or giving them to baby as a toy (okay, maybe that’s just me? Jacob has taken a keen interest in the way hard-boiled eggs spin lately, and I’m all about it. The more “toys” like these he finds, the fewer actual toys I need to buy.)
Anyway, I thought I’d do a little research on the incredible edible. Here’s what I found out when I took a closer look:
- Eating them is nothing new. People eating eggs is part of ancient history! Historic records show that humans have been domesticating birds and eating their eggs since 3200 B.C.
- Americans aren’t the only ones eating them for breakfast. Eggs are a common breakfast food around the world—not just in the United States. Canada, UK, Russia, Australia, Central America, France, Turkey, Netherlands, Germany, Belgium, and India all include eggs as one of their breakfast staples.
- They’re packed with vitamins and minerals. They contain at least 14 nutrients essential for our bodies to function, including iron, high-quality protein, and healthy fats—all of that for only 70 calories a pop.
- They’re good for our brains and eyes. The nutrients they contain help our brains function better and can help prevent macular degeneration.
- Their bad rap is not supported by science. This one gets a little technical. Eggs are high in cholesterol. However, only a small amount of that goes into our blood. The saturated fats and trans fats we eat affect cholesterol levels more than the cholesterol we eat. Tens of studies on the topic show that eating 1 to 2 eggs per day does not raise cholesterol or risk for heart disease or stroke.
- Having them for breakfast could help us lose weight. More than one research study shows that they keep us feeling full longer than other breakfast foods so that we end up eating fewer calories the rest of the day and in turn, lose weight.
- Eat one after a workout for strength and muscle repair. Eggs provide all of the body’s essential amino acids, which are responsible for muscle repair and growth.
- The yolk is where it’s at. This is for all you egg-white-omelet-ordering folks out there. Yes, the yolk has the cholesterol and the fat, but it also has most of the nutrients, including half of the protein.
- Mamas should eat them. Egg yolks have lots of choline, a necessary nutrient for pregnant and breastfeeding women because of its effects on babies’ brain development and on preventing birth defects. Mama or mama-to-be can meet half of her daily choline requirement in just two eggs a day.
- Babies can eat them. The old recommendation was that babies shouldn’t eat eggs or should only eat the yolk because the whites are highly allergenic. According to a new recommendation from the American Academy of Pediatrics, there’s no need to delay the introduction of allergenic foods. Unless baby has a history of allergies, he probably is fine to eat eggs. And, with all the nutrients (see #3 above) to foster baby’s health and development, he should.
Unfortunately, none of the above applies to eggs of the Cadbury or Reese’s variety. Sorry!
And, finally, in the spirit of Easter:
How to Make Perfect Hard-Boiled Eggs
I make (and eat) at least a half dozen hard-boiled eggs a week. Because I make them EVERY week, I’ve learned to perfect the recipe according to my tastes. Here’s what I do for an egg that is peelable, with a yolk that is never dry, green, gray, or stinky (well, okay, all hard-boiled eggs stink a little)!
- Place eggs (straight from the fridge) in a single layer in an uncovered saucepan.
- Cover them with one inch of cold water.
- Set the burner heat to high.
- As soon as eggs begin to boil, remove from burner, and cover the pan.
- Let eggs stand in hot water for 12 to 18 minutes depending on how you like them and how large they are (For me, it’s 12 minutes for large eggs—I like them a little soft in the middle—and 16 minutes for baby, who isn’t supposed to eat them soft.)
- Immediately run cold water over the eggs to cool. I run the water as I’m straining (to avoid cracking), then keep straining and filling the pot until the eggs are cool.
- Eat, refrigerate, or cover in pretty colors!
(Optional #8, give to baby to roll around.)
References and where to go for more info: