Wait, what? That is a common reaction if you ask many people if they know if they are getting enough choline. Choline is an essential nutrient, which means that it is absolutely necessary for health, yet it was only discovered in 1998, so many people have deficiencies to one degree or another.
Some of the symptoms of choline deficiency are fatigue, bad memory, difficulty thinking or retaining new information, aches, mood swings, and nerve problems. Choline deficiencies have also been linked to Alzheimer’s and dementia.
One of the problems doctors have in determining how much choline a person should consume each day is that it can be quite variable. Some people absorb it more easily than others and some illnesses cause an increased need for the nutrient. In general, 400-600 mg per day is normally needed, keeping in mind the wide variation.
Thankfully, there are quite a few foods that are high or relatively high in choline. Meats (including beef and pork), eggs, shellfish, chicken, turkey, and salmon are all high in choline. However, even vegans can get choline from cauliflower, broccoli, peas, Brussels Sprouts, potatoes, onions, bell peppers, and some kinds of mushrooms.
Many doctors now recommend taking choline supplements, in order to make sure that you get enough of this nutrient.
The reason for the picture of the oysters is that a cup of oysters contains 131 mg of choline.
Before reading this, did you know what choline was and how important it is?
I’ve never heard of it