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On Easter and beyond, healthy habits for eating hard-boiled or fried eggs

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Eggs have gotten a bad reputation over the years, but they don't have to. These are the nutrition statististics from SuperTracker: A large egg has 6 grams of protein, 1 gram of carbohydrates, 5 grams of fat and zero grams of dietary fiber. But eyebrows raise over the cholesterol rate, which is 211 milligrams (70 percent of the daily target limit).

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However, the American Heart Association isn't necessarily saying do away with eating eggs. AHA just wants people to be more conscious of leveling the rest of their meals around eating eggs.

The daily recommended guidelines for cholesterol is less than 300 milligrams for people with normal LDL (bad) cholesterol levels. AHA states that if eggs are eaten every morning, replace some of the meat with vegetables.

One pork sausage patty has 23 milligrams of cholesterol. One turkey patty has 67 grams of cholesterol. And one beef sausage patty has 22 milligrams of cholesterol. And let's be honest here. How often do omnivores eat just one patty of sausage for breakfast?

Vegetarians may be better off when it comes to staying within the cholesterol guidelines. For example, MorningStar Farms Original Sausage Patties have zero grams of cholesterol.

The problem is the vegetarian version has more sodium. For example, a beef patty has 176 milligrams of sodium, but MorningStar sausage patties have 260 milligrams. And the American Heart Association recommends having less than 1500 milligrams of sodium per day.

Want to skip sausage for bacon?

One slice of pork bacon has 9 milligrams of cholesterol. One slice of turkey bacon has 11 milligrams of cholesterol. One slice of beef bacon has 8 milligrams of cholesterol. And vegetarian bacon, such as MorningStar Farms Veggie Bacon Strips, wins again with zero grams of cholesterol.

Veggie bacon also beats out sodium statistics with one slice totaling 115 milligrams of sodium compared to beef turkey bacon's 146 milligrams.

Other common breakfast choices, such as bread, can sound the alarm for carbohydrates, but it has zero grams of cholesterol for either white or wheat versions.

However, for a fried egg, margarine still beats butter with zero grams of cholesterol as opposed to unsalted butter's 31 milligrams of cholesterol.

And both liquid and powder coffee creamer, which have zero grams of cholesterol, beat whole milk (24 milligrams), 2 percent milk (20 milligrams), 1 percent milk (12 milligrams) and skim milk (5 milligrams). Soy milk (suggested brand: Silk) has zero milligrams of cholesterol.

Watching a serving size can go a long way with helping to fight against high cholesterol no matter what the food is.

Follow Shamontiel on Pinterest for all of her latest Chicago nutrition and fitness entries, or subscribe to her Chicago Diet and Exercise channel at the top of this page. Also, follow her @BlackHealthNews.

Follow Shamontiel on Pinterest for all of her latest Chicago vegetarian entries, or subscribe to her Chicago Vegetarian channel at the top of this page. Also, follow her "Diet & Exercise" and "Vegetarian World" Pinterest boards.