The Added Health Benefits of Free-Range Eggs
It is no secret that in the fast-paced, instant gratification world we live in today, food is becoming less and less focused on fueling the body and more so on appeasing the taste buds and providing convenience to consumers. The reality is, food is growing less and less nutritious, which is why supplementation of nutrients using vitamins has become increasingly more common in recent decades. At Creswick Farms, we want to get back to offering food to our customers that are rich in essential nutrients, like food used to be.
If you’ve ever had the pleasure of visiting Creswick Farms, you may have noticed our chickens milling about, scratching and pecking at the ground. While you might find this behavior amusing (so do we!), the truth is that this is an instinctive and vital part of what our chickens do daily to create the nutrient dense, delicious free-range eggs that you buy from Creswick Farms.
According to a study conducted by Mother Earth News, who compared their results to the US Department of Agriculture’s stored data on the nutrient content of conventional chicken eggs (ie. factory farm), there is a significant difference in the quality of free-range eggs compared to the confinement style egg production factories that produce eggs for grocery stores, including possessing:
- 1⁄3 less cholesterol
- 1/4 less saturated fat
- An additional 2/3 vitamin A
- Double the omega-3 fatty acids
- Triple the vitamin E
- A whopping seven times more beta carotene
Even more recently, a study also conducted by Mother Earth News, indicated that free-range eggs contain 4 to 6 times the amount of vitamin D as conventional eggs. Similar studies have also been conducted by Pennsylvania State University and the British Journal of Nutrition.
How can a free-range diet make such a difference in the bio-available nutrients of a chicken egg? The answer is honestly pretty simple – bugs, bugs, bugs! That comical pecking and scratching behavior of chickens results in our hens ingesting a varied diet of insects and plants. Insects are packed with protein and contain a complex array of amino acids that benefit the digestive systems in chickens. Additionally, insects with exoskeletons, which is made up of chitin, such as beetles, grasshoppers, spiders, and ants may offer an immune boost for the birds themselves.
At Creswick Farms, we strive to use sustainable farming practices to give our livestock happy, enriched lives while providing superior, nutrient dense foods to our customers. Not only does this free-range lifestyle benefit us as the consumer, but it also has loads of perks for the chickens themselves, providing them with mental stimulation, more natural and advanced social interactions, healthier and more varied intestinal flora and stronger immune systems.