Health Watch — Healthy Pregnancy: Eggs

Health Watch is a Public Service of the Office of News and Publications  and is intended to provide general information only and should not replace the advice of a medical professional. You should contact your physician if you have questions about any of these topics.

This week on Health Watch, we’re talking about health issues relating to pregnancy. Pregnant women need to be especially careful about eating a nutritious diet that supplies all the essential elements to the growing fetus. One key ingredient for this diet could be eggs.

Eggs are an excellent source of folate, iron and protein, which are all important during pregnancy. They’re also a rich source of choline. Cindy Cunningham, a registered dietitian at UT Southwestern Medical Center, says choline is important for infant brain development and may prevent birth defects such as spina bifida. It also may play a role in lowering the risk of heart disease. Pregnant women need about 450 milligrams of choline a day, while breastfeeding women need 550 milligrams. Two eggs provide 250 milligrams – but only if you eat the yolks. Just be sure to cook eggs thoroughly because of the risk of salmonella with undercooked eggs.

Visit to learn more about UT Southwestern’s clinical services in nutrition.


August 2008

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