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Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Inositol

inositol is a member of the vitamin B complex and is often referred to as vitamin B8 (although it’s not really a vitamin at all). Inositol is actually a naturally occurring glucose isomer. Inositol benefits your body in a number of ways by transporting fat throughout your body and it also aids the neurons in your central nervous system to make sure everything is running smoothly. Inositol also functions very closely with another popular nutrient, choline, and both have huge health benefits.

Inositol is needed for health at cellular level and a fair concentration is found in the lens of the human eye as well as the heart. Men taking extra inositol reported that their hair loss had improved, with less hair falling out - although this has not been tested under clinical situations.

Inositol is required for
  • Inositol plays an important part in the health of cell membranes especially the specialized cells in the brain, bone marrow, eyes and intestines. 
  • The function of the cell membranes is to regulate the contents of the cells, which makes effective functioning possible. 
  •  Inositol is said to promote healthy hair, hair growth, and helps in controlling estrogen levels and may assist in preventing breast lumps. It may also be of benefit in reducing blood cholesterol levels.
Deficiency of inositol
If your intake is not sufficient, you may experience symptoms such as eczema, hair loss, constipation, and abnormalities of the eyes and raised cholesterol.


Best used with

Choline should be taken in the same amount as inositol and the best is to take the entire B group vitamins with it, Vitamin E, vitamin C as well as folic acid and linoleic acid is thought to increase the functioning of inositol.

When more inositol may be required 

Taking of long term antibiotics may increase your need for inositol, as well as if you consume a lot of coffee.

Enemy of inositol 


  • Coffee kills this nutrient.

Food sources 

  • Inositol is available from both plant and animal sources. The plant form in which inositol is available is phytic acid, which can bind with minerals and so affect their absorption negatively.
  • The body is also able to manufacture this factor. Inositol is available from wheat germ, brewers yeast. bananas, liver, brown rice, oat flakes, nuts, unrefined molasses, raisins and vegetables.

Amazing Inositol Benefits


  • It promotes strong, health hair. As I briefly mentioned earlier, one of the most talked about inositol benefits is how it benefits your hair. It’s a member of the B complex family which, as anybody who has studied will know, are known to promote strong hair, healthier hair, and faster growth.
  • It lowers cholesterol levels. One major health benefit of inositol is that when combined with choline, they produce lecithin in your body (which you can also obtain from soy lecithin). Lecithin is fundamental in breaking down fats in your body and this means that it can prevent fat build ups in the cell walls of your heart, arteries and brain by breaking down the fatty deposits. Less fat in your arteries, lower cholesterol.
  • It can treat depression and mood swings. The way inositol benefits depression, mood swings and to a lesser extent, bipolar disorder is very promising as well. Research has shown that those with low levels of inositol in their body have a higher chance of suffering any of these mental illnesses. Also, inositol is known to participate in the action of serotonin production in the brain and nerve systems that responds well to mood stabilizers. Put these together and you have a pretty great, natural antidepressant.
  • It can help babies with respiratory problems. A study published in the late 90′s has shown that inositol benefits new born babies with respiratory distress by significantly reducing death and disability. Inositol supplementation lowered rates of death, lung complications, brain bleeds, and eye problems with no real side effects. Further studies are ongoing, but if you are pregnant, speak to your doctor about adding inositol to your prenatal vitamins and they can recommend what you need to do to protect your child.
  • It might help fight against cancer. I know, I know. Everything has been linked to a cure for cancer. However, this is because the cure will not be one thing, but a combination of things that fight this disease. Inositol, for example, has been shown to have compounds with the criteria needed to treat and potentially prevent cancer. A few select studies in vitro have also shown that it may help — especially when combined with phytic acid.
  • It can help diabetes sufferers. Another great benefit of inositol (as part of the B-complex) is that it can have a positive impact on body cells. Diabetic neuropathy, a nerve disease which is the most frequent complication in diabetics, can be treated well using inositol supplements. Since most of the decreased nerve function is down to a loss of inositol in the cell, increasing your intake can ease the symptoms. It won’t cure the disease, but it will make it more bearable when combined with other diabetic neuropathy treatments.
  • It eases constipation. A lack of inositol in your system can cause excessive relaxation of the muscles in your intestines and alimentary canal, which leads to constipation. Inositol works to stimulate the muscular action and ease the pain of constipation. The same effects can be used in pregnant women to stimulate the muscular contractions in pregnancy to induce labor.