Taking Choline to Improve Mental and Physical Health

Photo by: Bigstockphoto
Photo by: Bigstockphoto

Choline is a type of essential nutrient that belong to the B-vitamin family, though it’s not formally seen as a vitamin. Choline works together with amino acid, methionine, and folate to promote better physical and mental health. While the body can make its own choline, it’s also commonly found in the food we eat.

More than keeping the body in its optimum health, choline is regarded as a brain booster because it helps maintain intelligence and synaptic plasticity of the brain.

Choline is utilized by the brain as a precursor to acetylcholine. This is a neurotransmitter that helps keep the cell membrane healthy. Although choline is found in certain types of foods, approximately 90% of the population doesn’t get their daily dietary requirement of this nutrient.

If you are choline-deficient, your memory and reasoning will become impaired. It would be hard to focus and it will ruin your mood. Long-term benefits of taking more choline include lowered acetylcholine levels preventing cognitive decline, senility, dementia, and even Alzheimer’s disease.

Benefits of Choline

Choline is known specifically for helping maintain better mental health. It’s so efficient in keeping the brain healthy that pregnant women are advised to take in more of this nutrient to aid in fetal brain development.

Clinical research shows that taking enough choline every day will keep your brain sharper later in life. Other benefits of choline include better memory retention and enhanced memory recall. It also improves learning, increases communication between brain cells, and improves mental energy.

Choline also helps uplift the mood, raises alertness and mental focus, prevents insomnia, improves REM sleep, minimizes headaches, and reduces mental problems like ADD and ADHD. If you suffer from panic attacks or are constantly anxious, you will also benefit from taking more choline.

Choline may also help reverse damages to the liver, lower cholesterol levels in the blood, and prevent heart diseases and certain types of cancer. Because choline contains anti-inflammatory properties, it could also help soothe symptoms of asthma. This nutrient also helps emulsify fat. This means that choline will keep fats in liquid form so they are less likely to cause blockage in the artery walls or in the gall bladder.

Sources of Choline

Choline is included in some multivitamins but you can also meet your required daily allowance of this nutrient by eating more beef liver, eggs, dairy products, cod, soybeans, cauliflower, kidney beans, or wheat germ.

People who suffer from any form of mental problem will benefit greatly from boosting their choline intake.  This nutrient is also advised for people who have hyperactive brain or those who experience racing thoughts, those afflicted with memory and cognitive problems, as well as those who constantly work out. Too much exercise could deplete the body’s supply of choline so it’s important to take supplements when you are doing strenuous activities on the daily. This nutrient also metabolizes fat so it’s great for those who work out to lose weight!

Finally, because choline helps improve sleep, it prevents bouts of insomnia, minimizes disrupted sleep patterns, and generally promotes better, deeper night’s sleep.