Tuesday, 8 November 2016

Alpha Lipoic Acid: Powerful Anti-Oxidant For Nerve Damage

Today's post from diabetv.com (see link below) is a short description of Alpha Lipoic Acid and its benefits for neuropathy patients (amongst others). There are many other posts here on the blog about ALA (use Search button to the right of the blog) but each one teaches us something new about this particular co-enzyme supplement that is so popular among nerve damage patients. As the article states, it's wise to consult your doctor about this but as a general rule ALA is safe so long as vast amounts aren't consumed for any length of time. If you haven't noticed any difference after say a month to 6 weeks, it may be better to stop and look elsewhere.

3 min read

Alpha Lipoic Acid, also known as Lipoic Acid or ALA, is a natural fatty acid produced in small amounts in our body. It plays an important role in our metabolism and as an antioxidant. It has been proven that lipoid acid can contribute to alleviate the painful symptoms of diabetic neuropathy. Today, DiabeTV will explain its properties and advantages of lipoid acid for treating Diabetic Neuropathy (DN).

Lipoic Acid occurs naturally in a wide variety of foods from animal and plant sources including liver, kidney, heart, spinach, broccoli, brussel sprouts, green peas, rice bran, and yeast extract. However, because the amounts found in natural sources are so small, most Lipoic Acid commercially available as a supplement is chemically synthesized.

Lipoic Acid participates in important reactions related to energy production to sustain body functions. Also, it is a potent antioxidant that readily penetrates neurons protecting them from the damaging effects of free radicals.

Multiple research has indicated that Alpha Lipoic Acid is very helpful for neuropathy patients for the following reasons:

It increases insulin sensitivity improving glucose utilization in type 2 diabetes.

Increases glucose uptake by muscle and fat cells reducing glucose levels in blood.

Improves neural transmission of nerve impulses. An excellent response to lipoid acid has been observed after two years of treatment.

As an antioxidant, alpha lipoic acid neutralizes the effects of reactive free radicals that may cause damage to DNA, proteins, and lipids within cell membranes.

It potentiates the action of other antioxidants like vitamin C, glutathione, and coenzyme Q10, which is a key cofactor in cell respiration reactions.

It helps regulate heart rate and it is beneficial for patients with kidney failure who require Hemodialysis.

Lipoic Acid can alleviate the symptons associated with Metabolic Syndrome, Neurodegenerative Diseases, Alzheimer, and cognitive dysfunction related to aging, among others.

As we age our body’s ability to produce Lipoic Acid diminishes so Lipoic Acid supplements are recommended not only for people suffering from Diabetic Neuropathy but also for the general population. Daily-recommended dose in healthy individuals varies between 200-400 mg while for Diabetics with Neuropathy the dose should be increased up to 600-1800 mg per day. Some studies suggest that a dose of 600 mg/day is better tolerated and its benefits can be observed after 5 weeks of treatment.

Remember that this is a supportive treatment. If you are interested in taking Lipoic Acid to treat your Diabetic Neuropathy, consult your physician, especially if you are taking medicine to lower your blood sugar. Avoid complications, watch your diet, do some physical activity, keep your blood sugar levels under control, and take your medicine as recommended by your doctor. Bottom line is, treating Diabetes is a long-term commitment and enjoying a good quality of life will depend largely on your own efforts to do whatever is necessary to achieve this goal.


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