An “Egg-cellent” Day on Our Tiny Farm!
We’ve had chickens for the past 7 years. They pretty much take care of themselves. We do have little chicken coops for them. They are free range chickens so they get to walk around the hillside and the yard. We have 1 Leghorn named Whitey the hen and 11 Golden Comets that I have named all of them “Buddy.” We do have a brown chicken that I call “Brownie.” We purchased the Golden Comets on July 3. We have had the Leghorn for 7 years now but she still lays just about every day . She has always been an egg-cellent layer!
When I plane a lot of wood, I use the chips in their coops. For the most part, they enjoy straw and hay. They enjoy cracked corn, (the goat’s maintenance feed), and bread. Well, today I went out to hang out with the peeps and checked for Whitey’s egg…and low and behold, there were 3 other brown eggs in the coop!
The great thing about raising our own chickens is that the eggs are so much better than store bought eggs. Free range chickens have 3-6 times more Vitamin D in them, less cholesterol, less saturated fat, more Vitamin A, and more beta-carotene, and more omega-3’s which are good for us. The egg yolks contain lutein and zeaxanthin, both are good source of anti-oxidants for eye health. These help the macula parts of the eyes from damaging UV rays and high-intensity blue light. Eggs are also a complete protein, meaning they include essential 9 amino acids in them. Ovalbumin makes up about 60% of the egg white and has been used as treatment for heavy metal treatments.
One of the least talked about nutrients in eggs is a nutrient called choline. Choline is a necessary nutrient found in eggs, liver, muscle meats, and some other foods and many Americans are not getting the daily amount needed. Our bodies produce choline in small amounts so humans must get it through their diet. Choline is a water-soluble nutrient usually categorized with the B vitamins but it an important part of cognitive health, especially the baby within pregnant women. Pregnant women who consume choline can help support the baby later on because the choline lowers cortisol in the pregnant mother, which in turn, can help the baby have a lower risk of mental disorders, diabetes, and high blood pressure later on in life. It also helps cell membranes function properly, helps nerve communications. Choline can also help reduce inflammation in the body.
Along with being healthier eggs, the chickens are simply fun to watch, especially when running. They crack me up when I yell for them and they all come running to me. Whitey and I like to spend time looking for worms underneath the walking stones out at the barn. Simply put, chickens are good therapy and having the fresh eggs are another benefit.