Today I’m going to talk about something that’s very important for your body and brain. In fact, it’s essential for
- healthy brain development, function memory, and cognition
- muscle development
- healthy liver function
- nervous system
Therefore, adequate amounts are needed for optimal health, fitness & longevity… especially if you’re over the age of 35.
Deficiency Is Very Unhealthy
Unfortunately, many people have inadequate amounts of this nutrient and are actually deficient in it. Mainly because they don’t eat the few specific foods that contain this essential nutrient.
People who are especially at risk of deficiency are:
- Athletes – especially long-distance runners or anyone who works out 4-5 times a week.
- Alcohol Drinkers – yes, this includes those of you who drink wine
- Women – especially pregnant and postmenopausal women
I’ve actually been taking this nutrient myself for over 25 years. I just take it in pill form. And in the past decade, I’ve taken more advanced versions of it.
Of course, by now you’re thinking, “Okay, what the heck is this super nutrient?”
What Is Choline?
Choline is actually an essential nutrient – meaning you need it.
For example, there are essential amino acids – meaning, you need protein.
There are essential fatty acids – meaning, you need some specific forms of fat.
Ironically, there are no essential carbohydrates – but, that’s another story for another day.
Even though choline is a nutrient, it’s neither a vitamin nor a mineral. However, many people or experts often group it with the B vitamin due to its similarities.
How Much Choline Do You Need?
Since it’s a nutrient, there is no RDA amount like there might be for certain vitamins and minerals.
However, the Institute of Medicine has set a value for an adequate intake (AI) (6).
This value is intended to be sufficient for most healthy people, helping them avoid negative consequences of deficiency, such as liver damage.
The average adult needs about 500 mg daily. Pregnant women need to double that by about 1000 mg.
Remember, this is so you don’t get SICK or have health problems.
I personally take double the dose at a minimum of 1000 mg daily and I take different forms of Choline, which I’ll tell you about in a minute.
Top 3 Food Sources For Choline
The good news is that you can get a decent amount of choline from foods. The 3 best ones being:
- Beef liver: 1 slice (2.4 ounces or 68 grams) contains 290 mg.
- Chicken liver: 1 slice (2.4 ounces or 68 grams) contains 222 mg.
- Eggs: 1 large egg contains 113 mg. It’s found in the YOLK and ideally, the yolk should be runny, not hard-boiled.
- Fresh cod: 3 ounces (85 grams) contain 248 mg.
But remember, you need to get at least 500 mg daily and I prefer 1000 mg for women, anyone who exercises regularly, and if you do anything that can stress your liver (alcohol, prescription drugs, etc.)
Now, I typically eat 1 or 2 raw eggs, about 3-4x weekly. I put it in a protein shake. So, that’s where I get my food source. I don’t like liver and rarely eat cod.
However, I still take different forms of Choline in supplements.
Best Forms Of Choline Supplements
Now, one of the reasons you take choline or need it is to help produce acetylcholine… especially since it declines as we age.
So, I take 3 main forms of choline:
- Regular Choline Bitartrate, which is the least absorbable form, but still has specific benefits and needs to be taken.
- Alpha-GPC [Alpha-Glyceryl Phosphoryl Choline (A-GPC)] is extremely well absorbed and crosses the blood-brain barrier. This has more energy, brain, memory, and cognitive benefits
- Citicoline (CDP-Choline)
Why do I take all 3? Because they work well together.
I know you’ll read online that one does this and the other does that and so on and so forth. But these 3 have an amazing synergy when combined together.
I won’t get into all the boring science and medical stuff – needless to say, the best nootropic, brain, and energy products will contain all 3.
And the good news is that when combined together, you need a lower dose – so that’ll save you time and money as well.
My favorite supplements contain the proper amounts, as well as other body and brain energy ingredients.