Alpha Lipoic Acid
Alpha Lipoic Acid is an antioxidant, a substance that neutralizes potentially harmful chemicals called free radicals, and converts glucose (blood sugar) into energy.
ALA will be more beneficial for individuals with some of the following conditions:
- Diabetes or higher than normal blood sugar levels;
- Have high cholesterol levels;
- Are affected by cataracts (in early stages);
- Cardiovascular problems such as hardening of arteries.
- ALA helps make vitamin C and E work better;
- ALA is a powerful antioxidant that fights free radicals;
- It's easily absorbed either from food eaten or from supplements;
- ALA helps increase glutathione which helps with detoxification;
- ALA helps protect the lens and retina of your eyes from degeneration, and also helps alleviate glaucoma;
- ALA is used to treat and detoxify the liver.
How to take
As a dietary supplement, take one to six capsules daily, with or without food.
Drug Class and Mechanism
Alpha Lipoic Acid is a fatty acid found naturally inside every cell in the body. It's needed by the body to produce the energy for our body's normal functions. Alpha Lipoic Acid converts glucose (blood sugar) into energy.
Alpha Lipoic Acid is also an antioxidant, a substance that neutralizes potentially harmful chemicals called free radicals. What makes Alpha Lipoic Acid unique is that it functions in water and fat, unlike the more common antioxidants vitamins C and E, and it appears to be able to recycle antioxidants such as vitamin C and glutathione after they have been used up. Glutathione is an important antioxidant that helps the body eliminate potentially harmful substances. Alpha Lipoic Acid increases the formation of glutathione.
If you miss a dose of ALA, take it as soon as possible. If it is almost time for your next dose, skip the missed dose and go back to your regular dosing schedule. Do not take 2 doses at once.
Store ALA at room temperature, between 68 and 77 degrees F (20 and 25 degrees C). Store away from heat, moisture, and light. Keep ALA out of the reach of children and away from pets.
You should not use this medication if you are allergic to Saw Palmetto, or have certain conditions. Be sure your doctor knows if you have:
- a bleeding or blood clotting disorder (such as hemophilia);
- stomach ulcer with active bleeding; or
- ulcerative colitis or Crohn's disease.
- liver disease;
- heart disease;
- a heart rhythm disorder;
- a history of stomach ulcer; or
- asthma or other breathing disorder.
Possible Side Effects
ALA has few if any side effects. The recommended daily dose is between 50mg to 100mg, and higher doses can cause nausea and upset stomachs, and excessive doses can even lead to low blood sugar. On the plus side, taking Alpha LA can sometimes lead to a mild and relaxing feeling, and lead to a better feel of well-being.
Animal studies indicate that ALA may alter thyroid hormone levels, so it could theoretically have the same effect in humans. People taking thyroid medications such as levothyroxine should be monitored by their healthcare provider.