Pairing foods can give you more nutrition, study finds

Research conducted by scientists at Purdue University has revealed that eating eggs alongside raw vegetables can help the body absorb more nutrients.

The study, which was published last month by The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, analysed the effects of eggs on the absorption of carotenoids, the pigment which gives fruit and vegetables - such as tomatoes, carrots and radishes - their bright colors, and which act as powerful antioxidants for the body.

The study, funded by a grant from the American Egg Board's Egg Nutrition Center, examined the effect of dietary lipids on the quantity of carotenoids detectable in the blood for a period of 10 hours after eating.

16 male participants were split into three groups consumed the same salad which was made up of a variety of unspecified brightly colored vegetables and three grams of canola oil. The control group ate salad with no eggs and the other two consumed one and a half or three scrambled eggs in addition to the raw vegetables. Blood was collected from the participants every hour for 10 hours in order to measure the carotenoids nutrients beta-carotene and lycopene present.

Results of the study showed those who consumed three eggs with their salad had two times the amount of carotenoids present in their blood as those who ate one and a half, and four times the amount of those who consumed no eggs at all.

Multiple studies in the field of food science and nutritional sciences, conclude a number of vitamins and minerals from various foods can only be made available in the digestive process through the inclusion of dietary fats, supporting the results of this study.

The Purdue research is the latest in a series of food science studies that examine the benefits of eating certain foods in a specific pairings in order to best unlock their nutritional benefits. These include whole wheat bread with hummus, leafy greens sprinkled with lemon and dishes containing turmeric mixed with pepper.