I come from Denmark and have been very interested in your website through my pregnancy. Im 34 weeks along now.
I have some questions I hope you are willing to answer.
Since week 10 in my pregnancy I have been taking a soy lecitin supplement containing 520 mg GMO-free lecithin and 60 mg phosphatidylcholin pr capsule (I take 2 a day.) This is the product: http://www.dkpharma.dk/shop/lecithin-520-mg-82.html
Is this safe or should I stop?
For a week when I was 17-18 weeks pregnant I took another supplement: lecithin granules derived from GMO-free soy beans.
I took 1 tablespoon (about 10 g) a day for a week untill I found a study about some rats who had poor reflexes because their mother-rat was fed with lecithin granules through pregnancy. I stopped imediately after this discovery. I Think the lecthin granules contained about 800 mg choline.
Did this supplement harm my baby?How much choline or phospatidylcholine (is this the same as choline?) should I consume a Day and which supplement
I'm not a scientist or a doctor - I just read a lot of the science literature and make the best interpretation that I can. I recommend you read up on my blog as much as you can to get the full background. I can't tell you what to do. I can just tell you what I would do if I had another baby.
First of all, you mentioned that "I found a study about some rats who had poor reflexes because their mother-rat was fed with lecithin granules through pregnancy." - I think I saw that study - but it was very old - about 30 years old I think. The many studies since then have not seen that effect and in fact see very good outcomes. Can you send me a link to that study if you can please.
If you do a search on pubmed.org on "pregnancy and choline" or "prenatal choline" you'll see that about 50 relevant studies have been done over the past 25 years or so on prenatal supplementation with choline during pregnancy. This you mentioned is the only study to my knowledge that showed negative results - and its from a relatively unknown lab in Russia (and not from a well-known lab that focuses on choline research). When I mentioned this study to other researchers who focus on choline research in the USA academic centers - they say that they think that the Russians didn't do a well controlled study - and the results are flawed - because it goes against all the other studies done in the past 25 years. So - I don't pay much attention to it.
We ended up taking a balanced approach - 50% Phosphatydyl choline and 50% Choline Bitartrate. But now I would just take the Phosphatydyl choline (other parents I've talked to did just this, one parent just 3 grams of choline in the form of choline Lecithin granules. And I've talked to researchers - they also recommend phosphatidyl choline and the most recent study (see below regarding the study in preventing mental illness used it too - and has had good results).
You are only taking 120mg of choline - two pills of 60 mg, ( phosphatidylcholine) which is not even at the level of the minimum recommended daily level during pregnancy. See these documents:
550 mg during pregnancy is the absolute minimum recommended by the medical field here in the USA and most people I've talked to or read about now suggest no less than 900 mg a day - just to minimize deficiencies in choline during pregnancy.
But the research that I've focused on is that if you take much larger amounts that the brain seems to get "turbo charged" and work much better as the child grows - see this research:
In fact, the minimum RDA (recommended daily amount) is about 550 mg of choline a day to prevent a deficit. However even moderate levels of choline (in the 550 mg to 900mg a day have not shown any of the extra benefit in terms of memory and brain development that the mouse research has shown - see this study:
We took about 3.5 grams of phospatidyl choline a day during our pregnancy - based on soy lecithin (we took probably 10 or 15 grams of lecithin a day , split between breakfast, lunch and dinnner. Our kids are very health and at the top of their classes and at 3.5 and 5 years old they are fluent in Mandarin Chinese and English (better then most of the native Chinese speaker children in their school I am told).
I don't see anything wrong with the lecithin you are taking - but you are taking a very small amount compared to what we took and what I think is now the best level to take (5 to 6 grams a day). See this study:
So - the only thing I'd do differently if I were you is to increase the level of Lecithin to this higher level to get the expected benefits in terms of brain development. The experts are doing tests with this higher level (see the study above) so I think it safe. (but of course others may disagree).
You asked "How much choline or phospatidylcholine (is this the same as choline?) should I consume a Day and which supplement?"
Phosphatydyl choline is a type of choline - and the one the I and other parents I've talked to think is the best source.
We used this source: http://www.iherb.com/Now-Foods-Lecithin-Extra-Strength-1200-mg-200-Softgels/658
And also used a lot of the granules (I mixed it into Quiches, and spaghetti sauce, etc.) and we also ate a lot of egg yolks - the best source.
Your sources are a lot more expensive than our sources, unfortunately.
Lastly - since you're pregnant right now - I recommend you read this page and the associated documents:
I hope this helps