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Alpha Lipoic Acid ALA for Anti-Inflammatory Diets

Alpha lipoic acid (ALA) is a nutrient that works in the body as a powerful antioxidant. The nutrient is also called "thioctic acid" or simply "lipoic acid". ALA is involved in the production of cellular energy or ATP. It contains sulphur and is functional in both water-based and oil-based environments. While not technically a "vitamin", alpha lipoic acid is a valuable aid to assist the body in neutralizing reactive oxygen species and free radicals.

Beyond its normal role in metabolism, the nutrient has found uses to help improve or prevent certain conditions. Researchers and physicians, especially in Europe and Japan, use the substance with patients who have either diabetes and/or AIDs. ALA has proven especially valuable in management of AIDs, diabetes and other diseases related to inflammation. Some other uses relate to cyrrosis of the liver, neuropathy and similar conditions.

Management of Diabetic Neuropathy
& Other Conditions

Physicians tend to recommend doses of only 50 to 100mg/day for most people, and sometimes prescribe 600mg or more per day in divided doses for people suffering from diabetic neuropathy or other conditions related to inflammation or high levels of AGEs (advanced glycation end products). Lipoic acid appears to reduce or slow the formation of these products, which may help manage neuropathy for some patients.

Other products that are thought to be helpful for patients with AGE formation problems include benfotiamine, pyridoxamine, aminoguanidine (sold as Pimagedine), carnosine, aspirin, and acetyl-l-carnitine.

ALA is capable of regenerating several other antioxidants to their active states, including vitamin C, vitamin E, glutathione, and coenzyme Q-10. ALA also has several potential benefits for people with diabetes. It enhances glucose uptake in type 2 (non-insulin-dependent) diabetes, inhibits glycosylation (the abnormal attachment of sugar to protein), and has been used to improve diabetic nerve damage and reduce associated pain.

Most studies have used intravenous alpha lipoic acid, but oral supplementation has nonetheless proved partially helpful in treating at least one form of diabetic neuropathy (using 800 mg per day). Preliminary evidence also indicates that 150 mg of alpha lipoic acid, taken daily for one month, improves visual function in people with glaucoma.

Consider taking at least 300mg per day of Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA). Even higher doses of up to 1.5 grams (1,500mg) per day or more have been used by many physicians to treat active Type-2 Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease in their patients.

The combination of Vitamin-E and Alpha Lipoic Acid has been shown to significantly improve heart performance and reduce lipid oxidation when added to diets. Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) is a powerful antioxidant that helps protect the body from oxidative damage related to aging and exercise.

Scientific Research Supporting
Alpha Lipoic Acid Supplementation

The references below were available from the NIH site as of July 14, 2008:

Where to buy Alpha Lipoic Acid

Alpha Lipoic Acid is not sold everywhere. You may find that some grocery stores and smaller vitamin shops may not carry this powerful antioxidant. Here is a list of a few good places to try.

Today there are many brands of Alpha Lipoic Acid available at reasonable prices. Even Wal-Mart now offers the product in several dosages, such as 100mg and 200mg per capsule. Recently, their on-the-shelf price for the 200mg capsules in a 50 pill bottle was less than $7.00 in one local Wal-Mart we checked. Wal-Mart usually sells these nutrients under a "house brand" product label that you may not be familiar with, but we've found them of good quality.

You should be able to find many brands available now in Walgreens, K-Mart, and many local discount pharmacies. Some grocery store vitamin departments may also carry this product.

Another good source is iHerb will show you a wide selection of brand names, all a very low prices. They do not carry their own "private label" brands. All brands shown in their online store are well known national brand names. They ship from Los Angeles, California; in most cases the next day after you order. We have no relationship with this company, but have purchased from them before at very reasonable prices.

©2008, Rights granted for unlimited duplication and dissemination as long as the references to are left unchanged, and a working link is provided pointing back to our home page: /

* All information on is for educational purposes only. These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. Before changing your diet, or adding supplements to your diet, or beginning an exercise program, everyone should consult a qualified and licensed health practitioner; a physician, dietician or similar professional.

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Replace omega-6 vegetable oils with omega-9 olive oil... Eat oily fish like tuna, sardines, anchovy, salmon, herring... Beans, lentils, peas add fiber... Nine or more 3-ounce servings of fruits or vegetables per day...