Essential Ingredients

Choline is Trending: Meet the Essential Liver Health Nutrient

2 min read

Essential Takeaways

  • Choline is an essential nutrient important to brain, cell, and liver health.*
  • You need Choline while pregnant because your Choline requirements increase dramatically in the third trimester.*
  • Choline works with DHA omega-3 fatty acids to support brain and cognition development in your baby.*

What is Choline?

Choline is a water-soluble essential nutrient that’s important for liver function, brain development, and nerve health.* Choline can be found in foods like eggs, beef liver, salmon, cauliflower, and brussels sprouts. Despite Choline’s availability in foods, it can actually be very difficult to get enough Choline from food when you’re pregnant, regardless of your diet.

Despite the fact that the Institute of Medicine recognized Choline as an essential nutrient in 1998, the FDA didn’t establish a recommended daily intake (RDI) for Choline until 2016.

What Choline Does For You

Choline has many functions inside the body. It is a major component of every cell membrane and works with Folate and Vitamin B12 to create the DNA building blocks for new cells. As the precursor for the brain’s most common neurotransmitter, acetylCholine, Choline is vital for your daily brain and nerve functions.*

Research has also shown that Choline is critical to liver health. Choline is an important component of a lipoprotein called Very Low-Density Lipoprotein (VLDL). VLDL carries triglycerides (a type of fat) out of your liver and into other parts of the body. Without enough Choline, your body has a hard time creating VLDL.*

You Need Choline When You’re Pregnant

In your third trimester, your Choline requirements increase dramatically thanks to the accelerated development rate of your baby’s central nervous system. Even after your baby is born, it still needs a lot of Choline, which it gets through breastfeeding or infant formula. Choline’s high concentration in breastmilk speaks to ongoing demand from infants’ developing brain, which continues at a high rate for at least two years.*

What Choline Does For Baby

Choline works with Omega-3 fatty acids to support brain and cognition development. Choline has also been shown to play the pivotal role in transporting DHA (a type of Omega-3) around the body and across the placenta--a pretty important job considering that a developing baby’s brain can be up to 75% DHA. Studies have shown that supplementing Choline during the last trimester and first three months of nursing is associated with neurologic processing and stress hormone levels in infants.

Ritual’s Form of Choline

Essential Prenatal contains VitaCholine, a fermented Choline in the bitartrate form, which means that it is pure Choline molecules joined with tartaric acid salt molecules. This is the same form of Choline found in healthy foods, and easier for your body to utilize than pure Choline. Unlike most other Choline found in supplements, the tartaric acid salt in our form is derived from wine grapes, which matches the naturally-occurring form of tartrate. Many other Choline manufacturers use synthesized tartaric acid, which is not currently recognized as GRAS (generally recognized as safe) by the FDA.

*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.