The Top Choline Rich Foods + Recipes
Why is Choline important? How much do you need each day? What do deficiencies look like? Which foods and recipes contain it?
Choline (Phosphatidyl Choline)
What is Choline?
Choline is one of the B complex vitamins and also an essential fatty acid (phospholipid). Choline is water-soluble (can dissolve in water) and can be manufactured in the body from the amino acids (the building blocks which make proteins) methionine and serine using vitamin B12 and folic acid.
Why is Choline important and what does it do in the body?
Choline helps make cell membranes. It forms part of sphingomyelin (a fat molecule found in cell membranes especially in the nerve sheath surrounding nerve cells) and phosphatidyl-choline (another fat molecule also found in cell membranes). It is vital in the formation of the neurotransmitter acetyl choline. A neurotransmitter is a chemical that allows nerve cells to communicate with other cells.
It is also required for the metabolism of fats. It works with betaine, inositol (another of the vitamin B complex) vitamin B12, folic acid and the amino acid carnitine, to utilize fats and cholesterol. It does this by helping to emulsify cholesterol which makes it easier to absorb into the lymphatic system. It is transported from this to the blood stream.
It is a vital liver support and aids in the detoxification of toxins and drugs from the liver and supports the removal of fat from the liver.
Choline is necessary for memory and also supports sensory input signals and muscular control. Research on rats, at Duke University Medical Center, has shown that the administration of choline during pregnancy increases brain function in the offspring which demonstrate greater learning ability and better recall. It may therefore be important to give choline supplements during pregnancy together with vitamin B5 and manganese.
A form of choline is being studied in the treatment of some types of cancer and to reduce pain and fever. The role of choline and vitamin B12 in the prevention and treatment of cancer is also being studied. Choline decreases estrogen activity and may ease the symptoms of menstrual cramps and lower the risk of developing breast lumps and breast cancer.
Choline increases the synthesis of the stress hormone adrenalin and supports sleep.
How much Choline do you need each day?
Choline is often sold as phosphatidyl-choline or phosphatidyl-inositol and even though no absolute daily allowance has been reported, 50-1,000mg per day is often used.
The DRI (Daily Recommended Intake) /RDA (Recommended DailyAllowance) of dietary Choline are listed below:
Please Note: By definition, the DRI/RDA recommendations apply only to 98% of healthy individuals and are not sufficient for those with higher nutrient requirements based upon their biochemical individuality, genetics, health status, medications, deficiencies, lifestyle, and toxic exposures.
Recommended Daily Allowance: None established
Optimal Daily Allowance 50mg/Day
What are possible Choline deficiency conditions and symptoms?
High blood pressure (hypertension)
Intolerance to fats
Nerve/muscle diseases such as myasthenia gravis and tardive dyskinesia
What are possible Choline toxicity conditions and symptoms?
There are no known side effects or toxicity symptoms associated with the administration of choline. It may be advisable to also supplement calcium to maintain phosphorus levels, as phosphorus levels commonly increase with choline supplementation. If large doses of choline are taken, it is advisable to take additional Vitamin B6 because choline may deplete Vitamin B6 levels with prolonged use.
What steals Choline from the body?
What tests can be used to assess Choline levels?
Blood levels - choline in plasma <1-12g indicates deficiency
What foods contain the highest amounts of Choline?
Top 10 Choline rich foods are:
1. Egg yolk 820mg/100g
2. Caviar 490mg/100g
Recipe: Avocado and Caviar Boats
3. Liver 426mg/100g
4. Salmon 231mg/100g
Recipe: Almond Crusted Salmon
5. Shiitake mushrooms 202mg/100g
6. Pork tenderloin 194mg/100g
7. Turkey 156mg/100g
Recipe: Paleo Turkey Chilli
8. Veal 128mg/100g
Recipe: Veal Chops with Rosemary
9. Mollusks 107mg/100g
Recipe: Paleo Seafood Soup
10. Peanuts 55.3mg/100g
What are the best Choline products?
Choline is commonly sold as phosphatidyl-choline or phosphatidyl-inositol
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This article was written by Jonathan Tommey, CCN and Bella Grace, NTP. This article is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Content should not be considered a substitute for professional medical expertise or treatment.
Isabella Grace is a Nutritional Therapy Practitioner focusing on toxin-free, natural living to its fullest extent. Her mission is to provide personalized integrative health solutions to create sustainable, lifelong change and enable you to live, love, and serve at your fullest health potential.
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