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Best supplements for the brain: The essential nutrient needed to boost cognitive function

The brain needs to be nourished in order for it to function properly si it’s important to eat the right foods. Vitamins, minerals and nutrients hold a host of different benefits for different parts of the body, but when it comes to the brain, one nutrient proven vital is choline.

It may not be as well-recognised as vitamin C or calcium, but choline is just as important to your wellbeing, according to Holland & Barrett.

It explains: “Choline is not technically a vitamin, but it is often grouped together with the B vitamins. It is an essential nutrient, though, which means our bodies need it to function normally.

“There are many benefits of choline. We need choline to produce the neurotransmitter acetylcholine, which helps with memory, mood and cognitive function, making it an essential brain food.

“A large-scale American study, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2011, found that a higher choline intake was linked to better cognitive performance.”

Choline is also important for a healthy liver and for maintaining our nervous system.

In 2016, the European Food Safety Authority set the daily adequate intake for choline at 400mg for adults.

While it is available in supplement form, choline can be found in a range of different foods.

According to experts at Healthline, the richest dietary sources of choline include:

  • Beef liver
  • Chicken liver
  • Eggs
  • Fresh cod
  • Salmon

High street health store Holland & Barrett offer some vegetarian alternatives:

  • Wheatgerm (toasted)
  • Brussels sprouts
  • Broccoli
  • Peanut butter
  • Cauliflower
  • Soybeans
  • Flaxseeds

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