Imagine this: you’re on your 6th egg of the week, feeling like a champ, and then bam! The very thought of another egg sends your stomach into a tailspin.
Yep, you’ve got egg ick.
Egg ick may not be a term you’ll find in medical journals, but it’s a real phenomenon that’s been buzzing on TikTok.
According to TikTok user @shabnomnom, egg ick is when eggs “start to taste a little too much like eggs, and you can’t eat them anymore.”
@kiaraa.barnes Just trying to get my protein in bruh 🤮#gymtok #fittok #gymhumor #ick ♬ Minute Maid Buss – KentoLit56
Whether you’re mid-bite at brunch or cooking scrambled eggs, this aversion can strike anytime and last from days to months.
But what causes this phenomenon, and how can you get over it? Let’s crack into it.
What Causes Egg Ick?
But what’s behind this sudden aversion? Let’s delve into some of the potential causes.
Sometimes, the issue is all in your head.
Psychological factors can play a significant role in developing egg ick. For instance, you might have recently overindulged in egg-centric meals, leading to fatigue.
It’s like listening to your favorite song on repeat until you can’t stand it anymore. Your brain might be signaling that it’s time for a change, making the thought of another egg-based meal unappetizing.
Women are especially susceptible to changes in taste preferences, often due to hormonal fluctuations. These shifts can occur during different phases of the menstrual cycle, pregnancy, or menopause.
So if you find yourself suddenly gagging at the smell of scrambled eggs, don’t be too quick to blame the chef; your hormones might be the real culprits.
Mild intolerance to eggs is not the same as an egg allergy, which would involve the immune system and could result in severe reactions.
Instead, a mild intolerance is usually related to your digestive system’s inability to break down certain egg components. This can be due to a lack of specific enzymes needed for digestion or a sensitivity to certain proteins or fats in the egg, like:
- Ovalbumin. This is the primary protein found in egg whites and is often the culprit behind egg intolerance or allergies.
- Ovomucoid. Also found in the egg white, ovomucoid is known to be a potent allergen and can cause intolerance in some people.
- Ovotransferrin. Another protein in egg whites, ovotransferrin, is less commonly a cause of intolerance but still possible.
- Livetin. Found in the yolk, this protein can also cause intolerance or allergic reactions in some people.
- Phospholipids. These fats are abundant in egg yolks and can sometimes cause digestive issues for people with certain fat malabsorption conditions.
- Avidin. This enzyme found in raw egg whites can bind to biotin (a B vitamin), potentially leading to a deficiency if consumed in large amounts. Cooking usually neutralizes this effect.
In this case, your body is sending you a clear message to steer clear, at least for a while, or consult your doctor.
Sometimes, the texture or smell of eggs can trigger egg ick.
The slimy whites or the sulfuric smell of a hard-boiled egg can suddenly become overwhelming, making you turn your nose to something you once enjoyed.
Ways to Get Over Egg Ick
My worst nightmare♬ original sound – To₿ee Maguire
If you’re going through an “egg ick” phase, don’t worry; you’re not alone. Understanding the root cause of your egg ick can help you decide whether it’s a temporary phase or something more serious.
Whether it’s psychological, hormonal, or a mild intolerance, recognizing the signs can help you navigate back to a balanced diet — or at least to a breakfast that doesn’t make you queasy.
Take a Break
Sometimes, absence makes the heart grow fonder. Taking a break from eggs for a while might be all you need to reset your palate.
Switch It Up
If scrambled eggs trigger your egg ick, try switching to a different preparation method. A hard-boiled egg might be more palatable.
Mask the Flavor
If it’s the taste that’s getting to you, try masking it with strong flavors like red vein chilies or herbs.
Healthy Egg Substitutes Packed with Protein
If you’re in the throes of egg ick and can’t stomach the thought of another scrambled egg dish, don’t worry. There are plenty of healthy, protein-rich substitutes that can easily take the place of eggs in your diet.
Not only is Greek yogurt a fantastic substitute for baking, but it also packs a protein punch.
With about 10 grams of protein per 100 grams, it’s a worthy alternative to eggs for breakfast or as a snack.
Scrambled tofu can mimic the texture of scrambled eggs and is a protein-packed alternative.
With around 8 grams of protein per 100 grams, it’s a solid choice for those looking to maintain their protein intake.
This grain is versatile and high in protein, with about 4 grams per cup.
Use it in salads, as a side dish, or even make quinoa “fried rice” as an egg-free option.
With approximately 28 grams of protein per cup, cottage cheese can be a great addition if eggs are off the menu.
Use it in salads, as a topping, or enjoy it alone.
This fermented soy product contains about 19 grams of protein per 100 grams.
It can be sliced, marinated, and used as an egg alternative in various dishes.
For those who prefer a plant-based diet, black beans offer around 7 grams of protein per half-cup and can be used in various dishes, from salads to black bean burgers.