Why do I choose sunflower lecithin? (which comes from sunflowers by the way). It’s a staple in pretty much every basic protocol I have. For both men and women with just about any and all health issues, this is one of those items that everyone should be looking into. I would almost even dare to call it a superfood….almost.

How do you get this into your diet? Simple. I add it to breakfast, add it to smoothies and shakes, I add in to salad dressings… the possibilities are endless, but be warned I ONLY use the powder and avoid SOY lecithin at all costs. If you want to max out the benefits you can even jack your dose to 1200 mg per day for both sexes and not have to worry about overdoing it. 

Did you know that your brain is made up of mostly fat? A third of the brains matter is a yellowy-brown fat known as lecithin. Since this is such a major amount of mass it is something we need to look at closely. When I recommend to my patients to consume lecithin (min 600 mg per day for men and 500 mg per day for women) for brain health I have a good reason behind it. You see lecithin holds choline, a vital neurotransmitter phospholipid that just so happens to be involved in THOUSANDS of processes in our body. We are talking about concentration, dexterity, bodily movement, even urination and bowel movements… 

Want a healthier brain? Get it into you. Sunflower lecithin helps us to create, repair and strengthen brain and nerve cells. This is beneficial for those suffering any kind of degenerative brain disease such as dementia, parkinson and Alzheimer’s. Clinical studies have shown improvement with as little as 35 mg per day.

Sunflower lecithin also contains linoleic acid, that means cholesterol lowering power. Since lecithin is a fat emulsifier it is essential for removing excess fats from the blood stream. That being said, fat is not the enemy (I think we have put that dietary myth to bed by now). That being said, I am also referring to its ability to remove triglycerides and free cholesterol. This means it is a major player in helping your liver accomplish its detoxifying task. Did you know the only other lecithin containing plant that contains as much linoleic acid is olive trees (i.e: olive oil), but that’s a whole other protocol.

Since we are on the topic of liver detox, lets dig a little deeper. The liver tends to get overloaded with lipids (fats), they then start to accumulate rather than being eliminated. This is part of the reason we need to make sure to help the liver do it’s job. Since there has been a significant rise in a condition known as non- alcoholic fatty liver disease, known to cause type 2 diabetes and even lead to liver cancer, this is something to take note of. Any help the liver can get to run more efficiently is a good thing. phospholipids do that.

It’s also an antioxidant, no shit! Sunflower lecithin contains one of mother natures most powerful antioxidants known as phosphatidylcholine.  This helps with prevention from having our cells destroyed by nasty free radicals. Oxidative damage done by these little jerks can cause anything from premature aging to cancer. 

For all you gym buffs out there, you are going to like this part. Recovery after an injury or a workout is sped up, due to the linoleic and other oleic acids found in sunflower lecithin. How? Because it helps speed the release of inflammatory transmitters known as cytokines which go straight to the injured area of the body. You can even apply it to external wounds for faster healing. 

Suffering arthritis? Lecithin happens to not only be found in the brain, but also happens to be the viscous fluid that sits between our joints lubricating them, every single one of them actually. If we don’t have this we end up with stiffness which eventually leads to permanent joint issues and disease like rheumatoid arthritis. This is where a higher dose comes into play. 100 mg per day is sufficient to protect against this. 

So many of us are stressed, and suffering anxiety. This is one of the main reasons I incorporate this into my protocols. The large amount of fat acids help the nervous system by way of strengthening nerve tissues and increasing neurotransmitter activity. Let’s geek out for a second here. Nerve fibres are made up of myelin sheaths. These sheaths are sort of like an information highway that allow impulses to travel to their destination. When they are disrupted then whole nervous system is thrown out of whack, this means mood swings, agitation, depression,anxiety, gut issues, an inability to cope with stress and so much more

How about blood pressure? it’s going to help lower that too. 

Sleep quality? You betcha! Because lecithin has more choline than most other plant (or animal) food sources it is going to help you get those zzz’s. Choline is converted into a neurotransmitter known as acetylcholine. Fun fact: the more processed foods you eat the more depleted intros you will be, so a diet high in processed foods is one of the top things you will want to address. 

Why not soy? Estrogen, phytoestrogens to be specific. Now this is a controversial one especially in the vegan community. It can lead to hormone imbalances, weight gain, breast growth in men (and women), sexual dysfunction and autoimmune disorders of the thyroid and adrenal glands. 

So get out and grab some powdered (not liquid) sunflower (not soy) lecithin and throw it into anything you can. This stuff is awesome.