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Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and new research shows it may just help you prevent breast cancer. A diet rich in choline, which is found chiefly in eggs, skim milk and coffee, can reduce the risk of developing breast cancer by 24%, according to a recent study funded by the National Institutes of Health and published in the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology Journal.
The study, which involved more than 3,000 women, adds to the growing body of research showing the protective benefits of eggs against developing breast cancer. Two previously published government studies showed that women who eat eggs have a lower risk of developing breast cancer.
“Choline is needed for the normal functioning of cells, no matter your age or gender,” says University of North Carolina’s Steven H. Zeisel, MD, PhD, and study author. “Increasing evidence shows that it may be particularly important for women, particularly those of child-bearing age.”
Choline is vital to the normal functioning of all cells (including brain and nerve function, liver metabolism and the transportation of nutrients throughout the body). It also acts like folic acid in preventing birth defects, improving memory and reducing heart disease.
Only one in ten women meet the Institute of Medicine’s recommendations for choline, which is 425 milligrams daily, or 450 milligrams if you’re pregnant and 550 milligrams if you’re breastfeeding. One egg contains 125.5 milligrams, or about 25% of your daily needs.
If you’re a fan of egg-white omelets you get zero choline, as it’s found in the yolks only. Beyond breakfast, you can get choline in liver, wheat germ and cauliflower.