Why Is Choline Good for the Brain?
You eat plenty of fruits and veggies, maintain a good balance between proteins, carbs and fats. Maybe you even take a multivitamin. You should be hitting all the required minerals, vitamins and nutrients to have a healthy, happy mind and body. Right? Well, maybe not.
Choline is a micronutrient, not classified as a vitamin or a mineral, but absolutely essential for many body functions, especially brain function. And while it is found in some food, the body may not adequately absorb choline from food, potentially leading to a choline deficiency. A choline deficiency can leave you battling:
- Memory loss
- Cognitive decline
- Learning disabilities
- Muscle aches
- Nerve damage
- Mood disorders and changes
Finding a high quality choline supplement like Neuro Alert could have an affect on your brain health. Let’s take a look at four (of many!) things choline does for the brain.
Choline Supplements & the Brain
Choline Brain Benefit #1: Fights Cognitive Decline
Age-related cognitive decline is very common. And while there are certainly other factors, such as genetic predisposition, that may come into play, nutrition is a big weapon in the arsenal against cognitive decline.
Supplementing with choline, as well as making sure you’re getting enough through your diet, can help maintain your neurotransmitters. As you age, your neurons tend to signal at a slower rate, which can lead to memory issues, forgetfulness, Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia.
Choline helps the brain with plasticity – that is, the ability to continue to change and learn. (It debunks the “you-can’t-teach-an-old-dog-new-tricks” theory.) Choline is important in infants and children as they grow and learn so quickly. Maintaining the brain’s ability to continue to learn is critical to staving off dementia and memory loss.
By continuing to learn new things, your synapses and neurons continue to work and function at higher levels. If you were to start exercising, you wouldn’t stop once you got the bicep you’d been wanting to achieve. You’d keep working that muscle to keep maintaining that level! The brain is no different. Just like muscles, the brain must abide by “use-it-or-lose-it” principles!
Choline Brain Benefit #2: Supports the Physiological Structure of the Brain
Choline provides building blocks for the structure of the central nervous system. In utero choline is crucial for brain and spinal cord development. Throughout your life, choline helps form the tissue of nerves, protect neuron and brain membranes, aid in nerve signaling and improve nerve capacity.
Choline is also a precursor to acetylcholine, the most widely spread neurotransmitter used throughout the body, carrying messages across synapses; it’s found in both the central and peripheral nervous system.
Acetylcholine is crucial in learning and memory processes. A choline deficiency, then, may lead to concentration difficulties, as well as changes in mood and memory disorders. These challenges may only exacerbate with age.
Choline Brain Benefit #3: Boosts Exercise and Athletic Performance
Yes. This is a brain benefit. After all, if your brain is sluggish in reacting, your performance suffers. Whether you participate in running, baseball, soccer, tennis, football or numerous other athletic endeavors, having a sharp, focused mind is critical.
You must be able to intake, process and react to information occurring at a very rapid rate. Think about how brief a time a batter has to decide whether to swing or not. Reaction time is critical, and physical reactions begin in the brain.
Choline assists neurotransmitters in faster signaling.
Choline Brain Benefit #4: Supports Child Development
Because choline is a vital building block, it’s vital for pregnant women to get sufficient levels of choline for the development of their unborn child’s brain and nervous system. This isn’t just important for physiological development. Studies have shown better brain function in children as they age when adequate levels of choline were present before birth.
Choline is naturally found in breast milk, helping continue to promote brain health after birth. Choline is also fortified in most infant formulas.
And as a child grows and learns, choline is necessary for forming new synapses. Developing brains that receive proper nutrition may find improved functionality in:
- Logical thinking
- Reducing ADHD likelihood
- Reducing the risk of learning disabilities
- Social skills, and more.