choline

Choline: It's What's For Breakfast

Breakfast Choline Eat

If you need another reason to have breakfast for dinner, look no further than everyone’s favorite vital nutrient that they’ve never heard of: Choline!

• Choline is a vital nutrient found in eggs, meat, and dairy products.

• But researchers find many people aren’t getting enough of the nutrient.

• Vegans and vegetarians have more risk for lower choline levels, but experts say people can take steps to supplement their diet.

Present in eggs, dairy, and meat, choline was recognized by the Institute of Medicine as an essential nutrient in 1998.

For the last 21 years, the institute has recommended daily choline intake of 550 milligrams (mg) per day for men and 425 mg per day for women, increasing to 450 mg during pregnancy and 550 mg for women who breastfeed.

That amount of choline intake doesn’t seem like it would be too difficult, considering that one hard-boiled egg has about 113 mg of choline.

But according to National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey data, 90 percent of children (but not infants), pregnant women, and adults aren’t getting enough.

The takeaway: If you’re routinely skipping breakfast, make sure you’re getting enough choline in your diet.