Egg-white omelets and sandwiches have made their way onto many breakfast menus, but is choosing egg whites over whole eggs really the best choice nutritionally? While choosing straight-up egg whites does lower the meal's calorie, fat, and cholesterol content, it also makes the meal void of important nutrients like vitamin B12 and iron. Keep reading to find out the exact calories and protein in egg whites, the benefits of eating egg-white protein, and how egg whites compare nutritionally to whole eggs.
Egg-White Calories and Protein
If you're looking to cut calories, fat, and cholesterol from your diet, egg whites might be a better option than whole eggs. One egg white from a large egg is 25 calories; has no fat, saturated fat, or cholesterol; and offers 3.3 grams of protein.
People choose egg whites when they want a low-calorie, high-protein food and if they're trying to watch their fat and cholesterol intake. Protein is essential for building muscle and maintaining muscle mass, which is especially important for athletes or those who lift weights. Including enough protein in meals also helps you stay fuller longer.
You can separate the white part yourself when cracking open an egg. Or if you enjoy hard-boiled eggs, just peel off the white part and eat it alone or chop it into a salad or add it to a wrap. You can also purchase containers of liquid egg whites and use them to make an omelet or scramble, cook egg whites into oatmeal, or add them to baked goods to increase the protein without adding tons of fat or calories.
Egg Whites vs. Whole Eggs
The chart below compares the nutrition of one large egg to that of one egg white from one large egg. See how the two compare in calories, fat, cholesterol, protein, and vitamins. If you're concerned about getting enough of the nutrients found in egg yolks but you're watching your calories, a good option would be to eat an omelet made of one whole egg and two egg whites. It's still low in calories, fat, and cholesterol, but you'll get some vitamins from the egg yolk.
|1 large egg||1 egg white (from large egg, or 2 tbsp. of liquid egg whites)|
|Fat||5 g||0 g|
|Sat. Fat||1.5 g||0 g|
|Cholesterol||185 mg||0 mg|
|Sodium||70 mg||8.3 mg|
|Protein||6 g||3.3 g|
|Vitamin B12||8%||0 mcg|
|Vitamin D||10%||0 IU|