January is a great time for fresh starts and pursuing healthier habits. And one way to jump start better eating habits is by incorporating better ingredients. Eggs are a staple in many diets, but not all eggs are created equal. Here are a few reasons why you should choose farm-fresh free-range eggs.

Better-For-You Eggs

In a comparison between pasture-raised chicken eggs and those from chicken commercially raised on factory farms, hens who openly forage in the great outdoors were found to produce eggs that have:

  • 1/3 less cholesterol
  • 1/4 less fat
  • 2/3 more vitamin A
  • 2 times more omega-3 fatty acids
  • 3 times more vitamin E
  • 7 times more beta carotene
  • 4 to 6 times more vitamin D

Undeniably Fresher

Store bought eggs really aren’t that fresh. The average grocery store egg might be several months old by the time you buy it. Commercially raised eggs can be sold up to 30 days after the egg has been placed into the carton. (And that isn’t necessarily the same day it was laid, y’all.)

Older eggs are still okay to eat, but the quality of the egg isn’t as good. Fresh eggs have firm yolks and tighter, clear egg whites. And of course, the longer that eggs are exposed to air, the higher the chance that bacteria can penetrate the egg’s porous shell.

Longer Lasting

Freshly laid eggs are naturally covered with a special protective coating called the “bloom” that acts as an antibacterial barrier to protect the potential developing chick. Without this bloom, eggs begin to spoil, yet all store-bought eggs have been washed before packaging, rinsing off this protection. For this reason, unwashed fresh eggs will last several months, even without refrigeration if the eggs are stored in a cool, dry place.

Home Grown Eggs Are Fun And Easy

Chicken TractorRaising your own chickens couldn’t be easier. With a small chicken tractor, which features a portable coop with attached run, you can wheel a small collection of hens around the yard, giving them access to fresh grass and juicy bugs. And the enclosed run protects your flock from predators while giving them 24/7 access to the outdoors. All you need to do is give them a little food, fresh water and access to a new patch of grass.

Many neighborhoods allow for one or two hens (not roosters) and a chicken tractor is perfect for even small yards. Plus there’s nothing like waking up and walking outside to collect your nutritious and fresh breakfast in the morning.

How are you planning on being healthier in 2017? Let us know in the comments below.