What does inositol do?
Inositol is required for proper formation of cell membranes. It affects nerve transmission and helps in transporting fats within the body.
Where is inositol found?
Nuts, beans, wheat and wheat bran, cantaloupe, and oranges are excellent sources of inositol. Most dietary inositol is in the form of phytate.
Who is likely to be deficient in inositol?
Clear deficiency of inositol has not been reported, although diabetics have increased excretion and may benefit from inositol supplements.
How much inositol is usually taken?
Most people do not need to take inositol. In addition, the small amounts commonly found in multi-vitamin supplements are probably unnecessary and ineffective. Nutritionally oriented doctors sometimes suggest 500 mg twice per day.
Are there any side effects or interactions?
Toxicity has not been reported, although people with chronic renal failure show elevated levels.
Large amounts of phytate, the common dietary form of inositol, reduce the absorption of calcium, iron, and zinc. However, supplemental inositol does not have this effect.
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