Choline – Benefits, Deficiency Symptoms And Food Sources
Choline is indispensable for a number of fundamental processes in the body. Choline is a water soluble member of the Vitamin B complex. It is not a true vitamin as it is synthesized in the liver. Although the human body can make some choline it is generally recognized that it is important to get dietary choline as well.
Functions and benefits of Choline
Choline helps an important role in human body to absorb and use fats, and is required for making acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter needed for muscle control, memory storage and other functions. Choline has also been shown to be essential for proper brain development in infants and children. In fact, supplementation of animal diets with choline or lecithin at particular times of brain development has been shown to permanently increase cognitive function. Choline keeps the liver healthy by helping to move fats from the liver to cells in the body.
Recommended Dosage for Choline
In the therapeutic use of this nutrient, the dosage is usually increased considerably, but the toxicity level must be kept in mind. The minimum Recommended Dosage Allowance of Choline is:-
* Male – 550 mg. per day.
* Female – 425 mg. per day.
Food sources of Choline
Although most foods have at least a little choline, some people may have to pay more close attention to get enough in their diets, particularly if they do not eat many whole eggs. Organ meats, wheat germ and whole grains, legumes (peas, beans, lentils, peanuts), fish are the good sources of vitamin choline.
Deficiency Symptoms of Choline
A deficiency of choline does not happen easily but if it is deficient it may lead to liver disease, raised cholesterol levels, high blood pressure as well as kidney problems, Choline deficiency may also manifest itself in the inability to digest fats, stunted growth and fatty buildup in the liver. Memory and brain function could also be impaired.