Alpha-lipoic acid (ALA) is found in almost every green vegetable in existence, so it’s no wonder that it’s been recently touted as a blood sugar-balancer.
Alpha-lipoic acid is a powerful antioxidant found in broccoli, spinach, red meat, brussel sprouts, and tomatoes. Basically, all those healthy foods you didn’t want to eat as a kid have the highest amounts of alpha-lipoic acid, go figure.
In general, alpha-lipoic acid is known to abolish free-radicals, reduce inflammation, and fight aging like a champ. What a lot of people might not know about alpha-lipoic acid is that it has been proven to be highly effective in the management of blood sugar imbalance.
Alpha-Lipoic Acid in the Body
The body naturally makes alpha-lipoic acid, so consuming ALA supplements every morning and night isn’t necessary for survival, but for those who experience blood sugar imbalance, it can be hugely beneficial.
When individuals eat supplements or foods that are high in alpha-lipoic acid, the cells convert the antioxidant into dihydrolipoic acid which protects the cell from oxidation, which famously leads to accelerated aging. The good news is that alpha-lipoic acid has the ability to slow this damaging process of oxidation right down.
In a recent study, 20 patients were given alpha-lipoic acid as a treatment for their metabolic syndrome symptoms. Markers of disease included muscle atrophy and difficulty walking. It was found that after ALA treatment, patients experienced a notable reduction in discomfort.1
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When it comes to neuropathy due to diabetes, alpha-lipoic acid has shown to be hugely beneficial. In fact, a 2016 study revealed that oral dosing of alpha-lipoic acid can lessen symptoms of diabetic neuropathy.2
So how much alpha-lipoic acid should you take on a daily basis in order to have an effect on diabetes? Based on the studies previously mentioned, about 600 mg per day of alpha-lipoic acid would suffice, and you should notice an effect after about three weeks of taking it.
Mind you, if you are taking alpha-lipoic acid for its general antioxidant effects, then 50 to 60 milligrams is all that’s necessary. It’s important to note that researchers suggest taking the supplement on its own without food as that might decrease absorption.
You could also try eating more foods that are high in alpha-lipoic acid like organ meats, carrots, and peas but taking a natural supplement is always a good way to make sure you’re getting your alpha-lipoic acid in every day.
As always, avoid any nootropic supplement if you are pregnant or breastfeeding. Additionally, avoid alpha-lipoic acid supplements if you have liver disease, have a thyroid disorder, or are in chemotherapy.
Overall, alpha-lipoic acid could be a good option if you’re in the beginning phases of trying to manage or maintain blood sugar levels or are simply looking to get an antioxidant boost. Try incorporating it into your diet through foods high in alpha-lipoic acid or opt for supplements if you’re looking for a more concentrated, consistent form of supplementation.
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