Alpha-GPC is considered the best available choline supplement on the market. It is a choline molecule chemically bonded to a phospholipid to achieve maximum absorption and ability to cross the blood-brain barrier. Alpha-GPC is 40% choline by weight, compared to other choline sources like CDP-choline which is only 18%. Choline is a precursor to the excitatory neurotransmitter acetylcholine (ACh), which is found in various brain regions and is required for proper memory and cognition, as well as motor control and muscle contraction. Alpha-GPC seems to be the most effective choline source for raising serum and brain choline levels.1 One of the major benefits of Alpha-GPC is the activation of Protein Kinase C(PKC), which has been shown to facilitate the formation of memories.2,3 Activation of PKC is attributed to the phospholipid structure of alpha-GPC, and is not seen from other choline sources. Alpha-GPC has also been associated with an increase in vesicular acetylcholine transporters, proteins that ultimately help deliver ACh to cell membranes where it can activate neurons.
Another benefit from supplementing with alpha-GPC is growth hormone release. In a study using 600mg of alpha-GPC demonstrated a 40% increase in a post-exercise GH spike compared to the placebo.4 Another study using 1000mg of alpha-GPC showed a 221% increase in GH 60min after consumption.5 Alpha-GPC also has been shown to increase power output by 14% when taken 45min before training.4
Tayebati SK, et al (2013) Modulation of monoaminergic transporters by choline-containing phospholipids in rat brain. CNS Neurol Disord Drug Targets.
Govoni S, et al (1993) PKC translocation in rat brain cortex is promoted in vivo and in vitro by alpha-glycerylphosphorylcholine, a cognition-enhancing drug . Ann N Y Acad Sci.
Bank, B., Loturco, J., & Alkon, D. (1989). Learning-induced activation of protein kinase C. Molecular Neurobiology Mol Neurobiol, 3(1-2), 55-70.
Ziegenfuss, Tim, Jamie Landis, and Jennifer Hofheins. "Acute supplementation with alpha-glycerylphosphorylcholine augments growth hormone response to, and peak force production during, resistance exercise." Journal of the International Society of Sports NutritionS1 (2008): P15
Kawamura, Takashi, et al. "Glycerophosphocholine enhances growth hormone secretion and fat oxidation in young adults." Nutrition11 (2012): 1122-1126.
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