What is Lecithin and what are the Sunflower Lecithin Benefits?
The term lecithin is describing a various brown or yellowish fatty compounds which occur naturally in various plants and animals. Lecithin was originally isolated from egg yolk.
Lecithin has become a popular supplement especially with regard to improving cholesterol levels as well as improving the functions of the nervous and circulatory systems. Sunflower and soy lecithin are two formulations that are very popular although there are slight differences between them.
Lecithin is known as a component of vital importance to every body’s cell. Lecithin is helpful for preventing the membranes of the cell to become hard and it is allowing them to stay healthy. It does not take a medical expert to tell you that healthy cells mean a healthy body.
Lecithin and other phospholipids are produced naturally in many of the body’s major organs including the heart, liver and kidneys. If you want to boost your lecithin levels however, you might well need to take a supplement.
As well as the heart health benefits of lecithin, there is also some evidence that it can help restore liver health and function and may be able to reverse the damaging effects of alcohol abuse. Some indications that are promising reveal that it could be helpful for improving the functions that are cognitive such as learning and memory.
The Differences Between Sunflower Lecithin and Soy Lecithin
Soy and sunflower lecithin are two very popular supplements of lecithin. Sunflower lecithin is the more expensive option due to the differences in production costs and yield. There are however sunflower lecithin benefits that are above soy lecithin.
- One main advantage is the extraction process; sunflower lecithin gets extracted without the need for potentially damaging chemical solvents such as acetone and hexane.
- Sunflower lecithin is produced through a system that is cold press such the one used to derive oil of olives and similar products.
- The lecithin that is produced raw and at the same time chemical-free is the sunflower lecithin.
- Sunflower lecithin is abundant with choline and fatty acids that are essential such as phosphatidylinositol.
- Soy lecithin is produced by the usage of chemicals that are dangerous such as hexane.
- Soy allergies could be developed at some individuals.
- Soy is often genetically engineered.
- There are concerns of elevated estrogen levels by consuming soy and soy lecithin.
Sunflower Lecithin Benefits
1. Hearth Health and Cholesterol
Lecithin is especially good for the health of your heart. It can help both prevent and reverse damage from coronary disease. Lecithin is essentially an emulsifier of fat which can be used by the body to discard the fat that is excess from the bloodstream.
These excess fats include cholesterol and triglycerides meaning that it will help you to reduce and control the levels of cholesterol. This task is accomplished largely because of the linoleic acid that is present in high concentrations in sunflower lecithin. In addition, olive oil has similar levels of linoleic acid while soy lecithin has very little of it.
The supplementation with sunflower lecithin is improving the circulation of the blood which could be helpful for preventing the formation of blood clots and as well as other problems.
2. Brain Health
The sunflower lecithin benefits to cognitive and neurological health are very important. That is due to abundance with phospholipids that are essential.
Phosphatidylcholine, phosphatidylinositol and phosphatidylethanolamine are all important ingredients which are utilized by the body to repair, strengthen and produce brain cells and also nerve cells. Some reports promise that sunflower lecithin could be useful for improving the functions of the body that are cognitive such as study, memory and focus.
The ability to recall and the good memory is an essential indication of a strong brain. Sunflower lecithin can be helpful for various degenerative conditions of the brain such as dementia, Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
3. For the Liver
The phospholipids also have a very essential role for the health of the liver. The liver very often becomes overwhelmed with fats that are excessive. The lipids (fats) can be accumulated in the liver contrary to the normal process of excretion through the bowels.
This condition is named fatty (non-alcoholic) liver disease. It is increasingly frequent problem that leads to more serious conditions such as type 2 diabetes, cirrhosis and possibly liver cancer. Because of its phospholipid content, sunflower lecithin can help prevent this excessive build-up of fats and keep the liver in good working condition.
4. Antioxidant Ability
Many people are aware that the antioxidants are important for the health. You can be provided by the sunflower lecithin with phosphatidylcholine which is powerful antioxidant.
Getting enough antioxidants into your diet is vital to prevent cellular damage caused by oxidative stress. The process of damage of the cells is leading to many sicknesses like cancer and heart disease and is also causing the process of premature aging both externally and internally.
5. Blood Pressure
As already mentioned, the linoleic acid contained in sunflower lecithin works by breaking down excess fats that accumulate in the body including cholesterol and triglycerides. When cholesterol and triglyceride levels are elevated too much are accumulating on the arterial walls which causes a condition called arteriosclerosis. This is basically a thickening of the arteries which is likely to lead to higher blood pressure and further to heart attack or stroke.
6. Nervous System
Sunflower lecithin is helpful for the efficient functioning of the nervous system due to the richness with fatty acids. These fatty acids boost the strength of nerve tissue and actually improve neurotransmitter activity.
Your nerve fibers consist of a complex network of sheaths which allow nerve impulses to effectively travel from one place to another. However, there are conditions of disruption of the nerve system that can be prevented by sunflower lecithin.
7. Wound Healing
Due to the linoleic acid as well as other essential fatty acids, there is a possibility for sunflower lecithin to be responsible for speeding up the process of release of inflammatory transmitters or cytokines to areas that are wounded in the body. Sunflower lecithin can be applied directly to any small wound and it can be immediately effective.
If you suffer from some kind of joint pain like arthritis, the supplementation with sunflower lecithin could have a positive effect. Lecithin is actually helpful for lubricating the body’s joints.
The lecithin’s deficiency can actually be causing the joints to be stiffen up and can be causing rheumatism. Lecithin supplementation can be helpful for preventing the disease of joints and also for easing the symptoms of conditions that are pre-existing.
9. Free of Estrogen
While this is not an actual sunflower lecithin benefits per se, it is worth noting that unlike soy lecithin, sunflower lecithin is free of the phytoestrogens contained in soy lecithin. Phyoestrogens can cause people of both sexes to produce excess estrogen leading to numerous metabolic issues such as early menopause, breast growth, sexual dysfunction and weight gain. It can also cause autoimmune disorder to the adrenal glands and thyroid.