Are Eggs Healthy For Babies?
Just in time for spring, here are three common egg myths, unscrambled:
Myth: Infants should only eat the yolk. Egg whites are the most allergenic, which is why, for years, doctors advised only serving infants the yolk. But there's no clear evidence that delaying the introduction of common allergenic foods prevents the development of allergies, serves no purpose that a more recent recommendation from the American Academy of Pediatrics suggests that delaying the introduction of common allergenic foods serves no purpose, even if you have a family history of allergies. What it means: No more separating yolks! Scramble up the whole kit and caboodle whenever your child is ready for solid foods. The exception: If your child has already shown allergic reactions (an allergic rash, for example), talk to your pediatrician about when to introduce eggs.
Myth: Babies should only eat a few eggs per week since they are so high in cholesterol. Infants' actually need more fat and cholesterol than adults for their still-developing brains and organs. So your baby can handle a whole egg every day. Plus, not only does the yolk contain half of the protein in the egg, it carries most of the egg's 13 essential nutrients, including hard-to-get choline, folate, and vitamin D.
Myth: Dyed eggs aren't safe for babies. It's true, dyes can penetrate an egg's porous shell, but in such small amounts that they're perfectly safe. More worrisome is the amount of time the colored eggs spend outside the fridge -- ones left out for more than two hours should be discarded or used for decoration only.