Introduction to ALA – Alpha-Lipoic Acid

Introduction to ALA – Alpha-Lipoic Acid

Alpha lipoic acid is a natural compound. It is an antioxidant, genuinely generated by our biological system. It is then spread and is eventually present in each single cell in our body. One of its roles is to convert glucose (blood sugar) into prominent energy. This energy is necessary for us, human, to remain active and in good conditions. Furthermore, antioxidant are matters that perform a vital function of fighting ‘free radicals’, the waste that are produced during the changing of glucose to energy. Alpha lipoic acid avoids free radicals, and ensures better protection of cells. The immune system is thus enforced against infections and other deleterious threats.

In the United State of America, research and clinical studies on human was initiated in the 1970’s trying to find out the benefits of ALA (alpha-lipoic acid) in treating human health problems. The study was carried out by the National Institutes of Health, which was monitored by Burton M. Berkson and Fredrick C. Bartter. An empirical research was administrated on a sample of 79 individuals, who were suffering from acute liver problems or damages. The sample was treated with the use of ALA. Astounding results showed that a total of 75 persons of the total of 79 had completely recovered. The damages were repaired and the functioning of the liver was back to a normal state. Alpha-lipoic acid was afterwards continuingly examined by Dr.Berkson, who had been appointed as member of the FDA. It was concluded that ALA was a proper treatment for chronic liver disease, viral hebatitis and even other illnesses.

Uses of ALA (alpha lipoic acid)

ALA has been identified to be effective in treating a range of health problems. These ranges from:

  • Brain function – it prevents free radicals, thus safeguarding cells from the threats of being damaged
  • Peripheral neuropathy – example diabetes, controls the level of blood sugar in the body
  • Aging related issues – it protects cells from being damaged by free radicals
  • Burning mouth syndrome
  • Viral Hebatitis
  • Stroke
  • Glaucoma
  • Liver damage

It is certain that antioxidant medicine treats other health concerns. These are some of its most devised purposes. The effectiveness in treating each of the mentioned health conditions depends upon the dosage. There is no confirmation that it will totally alleviate the health problems. The research on liver damage itself showed some unrepaired cases (4 out of 79). The study highlighted that 4 individuals were not fully recovered after the therapy. However, alpha lipoic acid remains an important drug in treating and alleviating illness, disease and damages inferred on internal cells.

Side effects of ALA (alpha lipoic acid)

ALA does not carry an intense list of adverse effects, but there are some common reactions that are experienced by patients under treatment of alpha lipic acid. These can be:

  • Muscle pain
  • Headache
  • Skin rash and irritation
  • Insuline autoimmune syndrome – Based on reports from Japan, but this one is considered to be extremely rare.

The progress of research has not yet clearly evaluated whether alpha lipoic acid is convenient for children or pregnant women. Moreover, proper evaluation of the risk associated with the drug, as a dietary supplement or in any other form, requires specialized advises from professional health care providers.

Interaction possibility that exist with ALA (alpha-lipoic acid)

There is always a risk that a negative reaction can be derived from a combination of drugs. It is thus pertinent to consult a health care provider before assuring the consumption of alpha lipoic acid.

Eventually, ALA (alpha-lipoic –acid) does influence the level of blood sugar (glucose) in the body. It decreases the presence of glucose, in respect to its mechanism to increase energy. This is attribute is positive for people who suffer from diabetes. However, if these individuals are consuming other drugs geared towards diabetes, ultimately diminishing blood sugar, then a combined effect can lead to hypoglycemia. It is a situation where a low level of blood sugar is present in the body. It is thus necessary to regulate the level of glucose in correlation to drug intake and availability of blood sugar within the body itself. This would reduce the risk of attaining a situation of hypoglycemia.

Furthermore, ALA can have a negative effect if consumed together with Levothyroxine. The reason for this particular relation is that alpha-lipoic acid tends to decrease the level of thyroid hormone. This particular research is heavily based on animal research. But the effect can absolutely be equal for human.

General information about ALA (alpha-lipoic acid)

Alpha lipoic acid does not need to be consumed. A health body can itself generate sufficient quantities of ALA for the body. However, a body in poor condition can lack the potential to produce the necessary amount.

ALA is mainly generated from the consumption of yeast, meats: especially organs such as liver and red meat. Moreover, the supplement is available in capsules. There is no recommend dosage. The volume will thus be inferred based on treatment purposes. For instance, for diabetes treatment a volume of 800mg daily would probably be assigned. For general intake the volume can be as low as 20mg to 50 mg per day.

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