Why Soccer Players Should Eat Eggs

Yes, eggs can be a good part of a soccer diet!

Although eggs have been given a bad rap because the yolk is high in cholesterol and has been thought to elevate blood cholesterol, the majority of healthy active soccer players can enjoy the whole egg, yolk and all! Just go easy on the saturated fat in the accompanying breakfast foods: bacon, buttery toast, and greasy hash browns. They tend to be the bigger health culprits.

Healthy soccer players with no family history of heart disease have no need to toss the yolk and eat just the white. That's like tossing the baby out with the bath water. The yolk is nutrient-dense and an excellent source of vitamins and minerals (including iodine, zinc, iron, and folic acid) as well as many other life-sustaining nutrients.

Many soccer players seek eggs for their high quality protein. The yolk offers three grams of protein and the white another three grams. That totals (only) six grams for the whole egg. Having two eggs for breakfast almost matches the 14 grams in a serving of Greek yogurt--surprising news to many of my clients who think their two-egg white omelet is a super source of protein. They need to think again; two egg whites offer only six grams of protein.

Eggs are also known for being satiating; that is, they contribute to a pleasant feeling of fullness. Hence, eating eggs can be a helpful addition to a weight management program. Obese dieters who ate eggs for breakfast lost more weight than those who ate a bagel for breakfast. (The egg eaters did not experience higher blood cholesterol levels.)

How about eggs for breakfast one day, Wheaties (or other whole grain cereal) the next day, and then oatmeal the third day? Sounds to me like a good plan to enjoy a variety of important nutrients in your sports diet!

Read more tips like these in "Food Guide for Soccer--Tips & Recipes From the Pros" by Gloria Averbuch and Nancy Clark, RD. The book addresses nutrition questions and concerns of soccer athletes of all ages, and offers almost 50 recipes from players in Women's Professional Soccer. Find the book at or at

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