Phosphatidylserine

(Known as Phospholipids, Phosphatidylserine)

tickMuscle Builder
tickMood enhancer
tickControls cortisol
How does it work?
Phosphatidylserine belongs to a special category of fat-soluble substances called phospholipids. It is needed to repair damaged cells, for normal brain function, and may also aid muscle growth.
Who is it used for?
Phosphatidylserine is especially useful for people wanting to build muscle, and may also improve mood and mental function.
How does it work?
Phospholipids are found in cell membranes, the "envelopes" which surround and protect the cells in your body. Phosphatidylserine is found in high concentrations in the brain, and helps to transfer signals from one brain cell to another.

One exciting feature of phosphatidylserine is its ability to lower cortisol levels [7, 8]. Cortisol is linked to all kinds of health problems, including diabetes, heart disease and depression. Cortisol may also weaken your immune system, leaving you more susceptible to colds and flu. One of the effects of elevated cortisol production is to increase the flow of protein out of your muscle cells. In other words, more cortisol equals less muscle. Most experts believe that suppressing cortisol levels helps to maintain muscle mass during periods of increased stress and intense training.

Phosphatidylserine may also help to preserve, or even improve, some aspects of mental functioning in the elderly when taken daily for three to six months [1, 2, 5]. In one double-blind study, mental function improved by an average of 15% [3]. In a similar trial, continued improvement was seen up to three months after the supplementation period ended [4].

Phosphatidylserine also affects the levels of neurotransmitters in the brain related to mood. In one study, a group of women suffering from depression were given 300 milligrams of phosphatidylserine per day for 30 days. The results show, on average, a 70% reduction in the severity of their depression [6]. PS is found in only trace amounts in a typical diet, and a supplement is necessary to reach the doses used in the research.
How do I use it?
Positive effects on mental function have been achieved using 200-500 milligrams per day of phosphatidylserine. Most studies used 300 milligrams per day. A 50-milligram dose before exercise has also been shown to lower cortisol levels.
What results can I expect?
Short-term supplementation (several days) with phosphatidylserine tends to improve endurance exercise performance. Up to 30 days of regular use is required to improve mental function.
What can it be combined with?
Although phosphatidylserine is very effective when used alone, some strength coaches report greater gains in muscle size and strength when phosphatidylserine is combined with whey protein.

1. Crook TH, Tinklenberg J, Yesavage J. (1991). Effects of phosphatidylserine in age-associated memory impairment. Neurology, 41, 644-649
2. Cenacchi T, Bertoldin T, Farina C. (1993). Cognitive decline in the elderly: a double-blind, placebo-controlled multicenter study on efficacy of phosphatidylserine administration. Aging (Milano), 5, 123-133
3. Fünfgeld EW, Baggen M, Nedwidek P. (1989). Double-blind study with phosphatidylserine (PS) in Parkinsonian patients with senile dementia of Alzheimer's type (SDAT). Prog Clin Biol Res, 317, 1235-1246
4. Amaducci L. (1988). Phosphatidylserine in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease: results of a multicenter study. Psychopharmacol Bull, 24, 130-134
5. Heiss WD, Kessler J, Mielke R. (1994). Long-term effects of phosphatidylserine, pyritinol, and cognitive training in Alzheimer's disease. A neuropsychological, EEG, and PET investigation. Dementia, 5, 88-98
6. Maggioni M, Picotti GB, Bondiolotti GP. (1990). Effects of phosphatidylserine therapy in geriatric patients with depressive disorders. Acta Psychiatr Scand (Denmark), 81, 265-270
7. Monteleone P, Beinat L, Tanzillo C, Maj M, Kemali D. (1990). Effects of phosphatidylserine on the neuroendocrine response to physical stress in humans. Neuroendocrinology, 52, 243-248
8.Monteleone P, Maj M, Beinat L, Natale M, Kemali D. (1992). Blunting by chronic phosphatidylserine administration of the stress-induced activation of the hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis in healthy men. Eur J Clin Pharmacol, 42, 385-888

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