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Q.

is choline good or bad

Studies by Steven Zeisel have shown that most people don't get the necessary amount of choline and those most deficient show fatty liver and or muscle damage in up to 80% of men. The best sources of choline are from lecithin in eggs and liver. However in the last couple weeks two studies have come out showing gut bacteria convert lecithin and carnitine into TMAO which is linked to artheroschlerosis, heart attack and stroke.  What do you think.

 

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Nutrition
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A.

It's too early to tell.  This study did show that higher levels of trimethylamine-N-oxide (TMAO) are associated with increased heart disease risk.  And, yes, dietary choline found in eggs and meat is metabolized into TMAO.  But this does not prove cause and effect and they don't know if lowering TMAO will lower heart disease risk.  Also, there are other dietary factors that should be looked at such as the consumption of fermented foods, probiotics and prebiotics which promote beneficial bacteria.

Whenever there is preliminary research like this, more studies are needed to confirm a relationship.  It's too soon to make a recommendation that people avoid choline-rich foods like eggs. Don't forget there are other sources of choline such as wheat germ and broccoli in addition to animal products.

For more on this study see this link and for more about Choline click here.

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