Baby Brains and Eyeballs, who wants them?
Ok do I have your attention?
I thought so.
Growing tiny intelligent humans takes work and nutrients. The funny thing about nutrients are they come from food, and sometimes they can be made inside the body. One of my favorite nutrients to research and learn about is Choline.
Choline is a nutrient that our bodies are unable to produce on their own. We need an outside source to from meat or and yes some legumes or veggies. That being said animal based products do provide the most, but yes even vegans can get enough choline to grow a tiny human.
Choline is a methy donor and needed for a variety of steps in metabolism. Choline is vital for the production of phosphatidylcholine and sphingomyelin these are critical for cell structure integrity.
Who doesn’t want structural integrity of cells? Think of them like bricks in a building, when they begin to crumble and break down things like bugs, or water damage can destroy the building. The building becomes more at risk and prone to damage from the elements. The body is the same way, when our cells lack integrity, and cannot repair themselves with nutrients that are needed we as humans become prone to injury, and disease.
Now back to baby brains and eyeballs. I don’t know about you but I love me some baby brains, and eyeballs. I love it when I know that what I am putting in my body while creating a human is nourishing not only them but maintaining my cells so I will be around to help them and guide them as they grow.
What does Choline do for our bodies?
Supports lipid transport
Supports lipid metabolism
Cell membrane signaling
Supports early brain development
So what foods would I recommend?
Eggs and yes eat the yolks!
Beef liver (I know yuck, I took Dessicated Beef Liver during pregnancy in a capsule)
How much do we need in a day?
Well if you are pregnant or lactating you need anywhere from 450-500mg daily. The foods above give you anywhere from 72mg-356mg (liver) per serving. So needless to say you can get that amount on a vegetarian or vegan diet but you need to either supplement with a quality prenatal, and make sure you know where to get your choline from if you are looking at getting it purely from fruits and vegetables. Here is a link to the NIH info on choline.
So in short, choline is kind of a big deal and a super important nutrient that we need. One last note on why it is so necessary to also take your folate (not folic acid) during pregnancy is that when we are depleted in folate we actually need more choline because it takes over as the primary methyl donor in the methylation cycle when folate is depleted. The body is a miraculous creating, and when we support it we can do amazing things including growing healthy humans and keeping our cells dialed in.