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A Little Thing Called Lecithin

By: Corinna Underwood - Updated: 14 Oct 2012 | comments*Discuss
Lecithin Diet Brain Memory Supplements

Lecithin is a fat-like substance called a phospholipid. The liver produces it daily, if the diet is adequate. Approximately 30% of your brain is composed of lecithin. It is also found in your spine and nerves, as well as all the muscles in your body. The your heart has the highest lecithin content.

Why You Need Lecithin

Every cell in the human body needs it to survive. It is a fatty substance which is essential for making each cell's protective membrane. This membrane offers protection against damage from free radicals which can cause oxidation, and is responsible for the control of nutrients which pass in and out of your cells. The protective layer around nerve and brain cells contain the same substances as found in lecithin. Nerve and muscle cells also contain lecithin. Lecithin is high in the B vitamins, particularly choline. Choline helps your body burn fat. It is important for controlling weight and is also said to help improve memory.

Preventing Disease

Because of choline's active role in metabolism it helps to reduce the risk of heart attack and stroke. A regular daily intake of choline can improve memory and mental function in general.

Lecithin is also important for preventing arteriosclerosis and preventing cardiovascular disease. Lecithin helps with the breakdown of cholesterol and fats into small particles. It enables cholesterol and other lipids, to be removed from the body. It also protects the arteries and organs from the build up of fatty tissue that can lead to stroke or heart attack.

Where to Obtain Lecithin

Lecithin can be found in high concentrations in soybeans and egg yolks, grains, whole wheat and brewer's yeast, are also good sources of lecithin. Research has shown that lecithin obtained from vegetable sources is more effective than from an animal source. Vegetable sources stimulate the re-absorption of bad cholesterol which causes arterial blockages. If there is enough lecithin in the blood then fat levels will return to normal within 3 hours after a high fat meal. However, if the blood supply is low on lecithin, fat and cholesterol levels will remain high for up to 20 hours.

Lecithin Deficiency

Without sufficient lecithin, your body cannot utilize the fat-soluble vitamins A, D, E, and K. By adding an adequate amount of lecithin to your diet you could improve your digestion and utilization of these vitamins by 100% or more. Regular exercise increases the amount of lecithin stored in the muscle tissue, which is in part responsible for greater muscle endurance.

Lecithin Supplements

Lecithin dietary supplements come in three forms: Liquid (thick, syrupy), capsules and granules. It is best to take your lecithin supplement with meals since it will act synergistically with other nutrients.

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