Inosital has a particular role in the maintenance of cell membranes, especially those of the brain, bone marrow, eye and intestines. Cell membranes control the contents of the cells, enabling them to function effectively. Inosital promotes healthy skin and hair growth. It helps to control oestrogen levels and may help to prevent breast lumps.
Availability in food
Inosital is widely available in animal food and plants including fresh fruit, cereals and pulses. In plants it occurs as phytic acid which can prevent the absorption of minerals by binding with them. To prevent this, cereals and pulses should be cooked or sprouted. The intestinal bacteria can also manufacture inosital and as the body normally contains stores, daily intake is not essential.
What if your intake is too low?
Eczema, hair loss, constipation, and raised cholesterol may occur, but deficiency of inosital is rare.
When extra may be needed?
- If you regularly drink more than two cups of coffee a day
- If you are taking long-term antibiotics
(Pregnant and breast-feeding women should consult a doctor, midwife, or qualified nutritional therapist bifore taking any vitamin or mineral supplements.)
Can too much be toxic?
There is no known toxicity.
Using a supplement
If you wish to take a supplement, inosital is best taken as part of a balanced B-vitamin tablet or capsule, unless your doctor or nutritional health practitioner advises otherwise.