“I bet you think an egg is something you casually order for breakfast when you can’t think of anything else. Well, so did I once, but that was before the egg and I.”
Well the hens seem relatively unfazed by this cold turn in the weather. While I’ve been keeping an eye on seedlings in the greenhouse, making sure they don’t get too cold, the hens have been out foraging on wild grasses and herbs, as well as any weeds I toss out of the garden for them – oh and they have a keen eye for bugs and worms of all kinds!
Here are a few interesting facts I gleaned while doing some quick searches…
Eggs from birds raised on pasture contains higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids than purely grain fed birds. Omega-3’s, including alpha-linoleic acid (ALA) has been attributed to preventing breast cancer; a British study found women with diets high in ALA (and thus more ALA in their tissue) were one fourth as likely to have their cancers return. (British Journal of Cancer, 1994. Volume 70 pages 330-4.)
Pastured hens produce eggs with 3 to 6 times as much vitamin D as caged industry birds. It could be the free choice of fresh plant and insect foods, it could be that they get to bask in the sun themselves. Maybe they are happier and this makes more vitamin D! Vitamin D helps build strong bones, strenthen the immune system, improve mood, reduce blood pressure, combat cancer (as previously outlined), and reduce the risk of some autoimmune disorders.
Pastured Hens produce eggs with:
- 1/3 less cholesterol than commercial eggs
- 1/4 less saturated fat
- 2/3 more vitamin A
- 2 times more omega-3 fatty acids
- 7 times more beta carotene
- 30% more folic acid
- 50% more B12 (important for brain function and the nervous system as well as more we probably don’t understand yet!)
- MORE VITAMIN E (an important anti-oxidant, important for gene expression as a prevention for platelet aggregation!)