What is Alpha Lipoic Acid?
Author: ANCP Date Posted:6 May 2016
What is Alpha Lipoic Acid & What is it used for?
Alpha Lipoic Acid is a sulphur containing, vitamin-like substance that can be obtained from the diet, but is also manufactured by the body.
1. A Potent antioxidant
Alpha Lipoic Acid is a unique antioxidant that is soluble in both the watery and fatty environments of our cells. this enables it to effectively scavenge a wider range of free radicals that occur in our various cellular environments. It also helps regenerate other antioxidants, including vitamin E (which is fat-soluble) and vitamin C (which is water-soluble).
2. Cellular energy:
Alpha Lipoic Acid helps convert the carbohydrates we eat into units of energy (adenosine triphosphate, or ATP) to fuel our cells.
3. Blood sugar balance:
Alpha Lipoic Acid supports the metabolism of glucose and the uptake of glucose into the cells, so it may assist in the maintenance of healthy blood sugar levels in healthy individuals.
4. Healthy Ageing:
Because of its unique, potent antioxidant effects, Alpha Lipoic Acid is thought to help support the healthy ageing process.
5. Cardiovascular Health:
Alpha Lipoic Acid helps protect LDL-cholesterol (sometimes referred to as ‘bad’ cholesterol) from being damaged (oxidised) by free radicals, which may in turn help support heart and blood vessel health. (Oxidised LDL-cholesterol particles are regarded as being more likely to induce inflammation and other changes in the blood vessels and may increase the likelihood of plaque forming in the arteries).
Where can I find Alpha Lipoic Acid?
The richest dietary sources of alpha lipoic acid are meats (including organ meats such as heart, liver and kidneys). Vegetarian sources include tomatoes, potatoes, broccoli, spinach, peas and rice bran. If you’re taking a supplement to top up your levels further, up to 600 mg/day (taken as three doses of 200 mg each) is a suitable dose for most people. This is also the dose used in several clinical studies.