Phosphatidylserine is a phospholipid - a molecule made up of two fatty acids and a phosphate group attached to a glycerol backbone. It is concentrated in cells of the brain, where it may be related to brain cell function and neurotransmitter metabolism. Phosphatidylserine is also found in other cell membranes, such as muscle tissue and cells of the immune system, where they may play both a structural and functional role in muscle metabolism and immune system function.
• Prevents muscle breakdown
• Stimulates immune function
• Maintains brain function, memory and cognitive ability
Phosphatidylserine has been shown to reduce blood levels of cortisol - a hormone produced in response to stress. One of the effects of elevated cortisol production is accelerated amino acid catabolism - which could lead to muscle breakdown. Suppression of cortisol levels could theoretically maintain muscle mass during periods of increased stress and intense training.
Scientific Support Phosphatidylserine, like other phospholipids, is a major constituent of cellular membranes. Maintenance of membrane integrity is a crucial component of proper function, but there is little direct evidence that Phosphatidylserine supplements improve membrane integrity or cellular function. Phosphatidylserine has, however, been linked to a suppression of cortisol secretion during periods of intense training (20-30%) - an effect which may help enhance recovery and repair, particularly following intense exercise or injury.
As a brain-support nutrient, Phosphatidylserine has been validated through double-blind trials for improving memory, learning, concentration, word recall, and mood in middle-aged and elderly subjects with dementia or age-related cognitive decline. In animal studies, long-term phosphatidylserine treatment has been shown to maintain the integrity of neuronal structures in the brain which have been altered by the aging process. These are logical findings, as Phosphatidylserine is particularly enriched in the brain and has an excellent benefit-to-risk profile when compared to traditional treatments for memory loss.
It is interesting to note that Phosphatidylserine could also be considered a “general stress” nutrient – providing benefits for athletes subjected to the physical stress of exercise as well as for those individuals who are under chronic emotional stress from hectic lifestyles, job deadlines and many of the other stresses of modern life.