How Can Lecithin Supplements Benefit You?
All about lecithin supplements...
What is it?
What Can It Do For You?
Lecithin is one of a family of fatty compounds called phosphospholipids. It is needed by every living cell in the human body – all 600 trillion for building cell membranes. These membranes control the passage of nutrients into and out of the cells as well as they protect cells’ interior structures. In fact, without lecithin, the membranes in our body would harden and our cells would die.
This essential fatty substance is also found in the protective sheaths surrounding nerve cells and muscles. It also plays a role in carrying out metabolic functions, especially in helping to break down cholesterol and other lipids.
Although lecithin is a lipid, it is partly soluble in water and thus acts as an emulsifying agent, a substance that helps fats mix with water and other bodily fluids. It helps disperse cholesterol and other fats in body fluids so that they can be removed from the body. As such, vital organs and arteries are protected from fatty buildup, making it valuable in the prevention of atherosclerosis and heart disease.
But wait, there's more info about lecithin and lecithin supplements ….
Lecithin is a major component of bile, the digestive juices that breaks down fats. Some experts point out that low levels of lecithin in the bile have been linked to an increased risk of gallstones.
Lecithin is also a rich source of choline, one of the B vitamins, and it also contains linoleic acid and inositol. Once in the body, a major constituent of lecithin called phosphatidylcholine breaks down into choline. Choline is used to make acetylcholine, a neurotransmitter that is necessary to transmit impulses along nerve pathways. Choline is also essential for maintaining cell membranes.
Role as a Supplement: All about Lecithin Supplements
First, phosphatidylcholine (PC) is available in dietary supplement form, which might be thought of as a purified extract of lecithin.
Specifically, phosphatidylcholine may help to:
Prevent Gallstones. As we mentioned earlier, low levels of lecithin in the bile have been linked to an increased risk of gallstones. As such, taking lecithin supplements or its purified extract, phosphatidylcholine may help to avert often painful gallstones as well as promote gallbladder health.
Liver Disease. There has been good clinical data to support the use of phosphatidylcholine for the following liver disorders: toxic liver damage; drug-induced liver damage; diabetic fatty liver; decreased bile solubility; cirrhosis of the liver; chronic hepatitis; alcohol-induced fatty liver; and acute viral hepatitis. More specifically, in Germany, phosphatidylcholine is marketed for the treatment in these liver disorders and its use for these clinical applications has received proper authorization from the BGA, the German equivalent of the FDA.
In addition to the all of the above benefits of lecithin, phosphatidylcholine has been used in connection with bipolar disorder, Alzheimer's disease, elevated cholesterol levels, and memory loss.
Dietary sources of lecithin include liver and other organ meats, muscle meat, egg yolks, as well as plant foods, particularly soybeans. It is also found in peanuts, cabbage, wheat germ, and brewer's yeast. Soybeans and egg yolks are rich sources.
Lecithin is also added to ice cream, mayonnaise, margarine, salad dressings, and many other processed foods to prevent fats and fluids from separating.
Side Effects of Lecithin Supplements
According to experts lecithin is generally safe, although high doses may cause bloating, diarrhea, nausea, and other intestinal symptoms.
Our Opinion about Lecithin Supplements
First, it's important to note that there is no RDA (recommended daily allowance) set for this nutrient.
Second, ironically, some of the best dietary sources of lecithin such as eggs, animal fats, as well as organ meats have been implicated as the culprits in obesity, heart disease, and other health problems. As such, we believe that if you have reduced your intake of such foods, lecithin supplements may be needed to compensate for the dietary shortfall.
Since there is no RDA set for this nutrient, we suggest that you err on the side of caution and take a phosphatidylcholine supplement dosage anywhere from 25 mgs to 100 mgs, which is probably the safest for maintaining vibrant health. In fact, nowadays there are some very highly sophisticated comprehensive multi-nutrient products that include phosphatidylcholine along with a broad range of other nutrients needed for optimal 'whole' body health, like vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, amino acids, herbal extracts, enzymes and other specialty nutrients.
Exception: Therapeutic uses often require higher doses that may not be found in comprehensive multi-nutrient formulas designed for maintaining vibrant health. However, therapeutic uses should only be done in consultation with your physician.
How to Choose Quality Lecithin Supplements
Select a lecithin supplement from only pharmaceutical GMP compliant manufacturers. These facilities adhere to the most stringent regulatory standards for the manufacture of dietary supplements.
This is extremely important because dietary supplements are loosely regulated and many do not contain the ingredients listed on the label or they harbor harmful contaminates. It's hard to believe but its true!
Select a product from a highly-credentialed formulator, especially if you select a comprehensive supplement.
Featured Comprehensive Product
One company that meets the above requirements -- and more -- is Xtend-Life Natural Products from New Zealand. Their flagship product called Total Balance contains Phosphatidyl Choline (as Lecithin), in addition to a broad spectrum of over 70 specialized nutrients that the body needs for optimal health, including vitamins, minerals, potent antioxidants, specialty nutrients, herbal extracts, enzymes, and amino acids.
Total Balance is formulated by a highly credentialed scientific team that can blend these ingredients perfectly to ensure maximum benefits. The company also uses only standardized herbal extracts, the purest herbal extracts with the highest quality and therapeutic benefits, and they adhere to strict pharmaceutical GMP compliance, which is the toughest in the industry.
All of the ingredients used in Xtend-Life Natural Products are supported with a Certificate of Analysis (COA) on file and, in addition, the company does a series of crosschecks before purchasing any raw ingredients that guarantees their potency and safety.
We here at Nutritional-Supplement-Educational-Centre have been taking Total Balance for several years now and can personally attest to its excellent results such as an increase in energy levels, mental clarity, and an increase feeling of well-being.
We hope this webpage discussing lecithin supplements was useful to you.
To Your Heath!
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