Taurine has many known benefits

Taurine is an amino sulfonic acid that is found in high levels in the skeletal and heart muscles of humans, as well as in white blood cells and the central nervous system. It is also found in some plants, such as seaweed, fungi and bacteria. Taurine is a main ingredient in bile and aids in the digestion of fats and the absorption of vitamins that are fat soluble. It is a necessary acid that the human body produces naturally.

Austrian scientists Friedrich Tiedermann and Leopold Gmelin first identified this substance in 1827 in the bile of an ox. This is where the name comes from – the Latin word for bull is Taurus. While scientists know for sure that taurine aids in the breakdown of fats and absorption of vitamins, there are many other claims that have been made concerning its usefulness in the human body. In infants and some animals, specifically cats, it is a requirement for eye health and development. Premature infants who cannot naturally produce this acid must have formula with it added to ensure proper development.

Taurine has many known benefits, although some have not been definitively proven. It may reduce high blood pressure in adults and is being tested as a potential treatment for bipolar depression. Studies on mice have shown that taking supplements while on a high fat diet kept them from gaining weight. In other studies, diabetic rats saw improvement in losing weight, and lower blood sugar levels.

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