While statins are known to restrict cholesterol and doctors monitor heart and muscle problems, rarely do they concern themselves with the risk of low cholesterol to brain function. So what’s the answer?
The answer is “consume more choline” according to the National Academy of Sciences in America over 15 years ago. Choline is an essential part of methylation in the body, its membranes and especially the brain.
So why do doctors not seem to be aware of this?
Choline is essential for maintaining normal levels of a crucially important neurotransmitter called acetylcholine that helps boost your memory and overall brain performance. It boosts dopamine production – in short supply in Parkinson’s sufferers; and norepinephrine – a neurotransmitter crucial for your ability to focus on a subject.
Then choline protects the brain from free-radical damage.
And research shows choline is essential in stopping brain shrinkage, as it helps build new tissue.
Choline also helps in the brain’s energy system through ATP production – the brain demands a lot of energy.
One study showed that supplementation with choline ‘significantly improved short-term memory loss’ (Alvarez, XA et al; 1997; Meth Find Exp Clin Pharmacol: 201-10) while a second showed choline boosted verbal memory and recall (Spiers, et al; 1996; Archives of Neurology 53: 441-48).
Finally, several recent studies have demonstrated that choline could even reverse symptoms in patients with early signs of Alzheimer’s ( For example: Wurtman, RJ. 2014 Nutrients 6: 1701-10. And. Zeisel et al, “Choline: An Essential Nutrient for Public Health.” Nutr Rev 2009; 67: 615-23.
Natural Sources: organic eggs, soya milk, tofu, broccoli, prawns, tuna, salmon, cod, chicken, turkey and beef. The NAS suggested an upper limit was 3.5 grams a day – this would require supplementation. 425 mg seems the recommended level.