In today's fast-paced and hectic world, we want gadgets, beauty products and even foods and supplements that do more than one thing at once. Alpha lipoic acid is called "the universal antioxidant" for that reason.
If there's one antioxidant supplement you should know about, it's alpha lipoic acid.
A Little About Alpha Lipoic Acid
Antioxidants are essential to protect the cells of the body. What are they protecting the cells from? Free radicals. Free radicals are the byproduct of energy production and can cause oxidative stress and damage to the cells, causing premature aging and even weakening the immune system.
Alpha lipoic acid is considered "the universal antioxidant" because it's soluble in both water and fat, which means it can be much more easily utilized by the body, and therefore effective in multiple ways. It's often referred to as a vitamin-like compound, since it was first thought to be a vitamin when discovered.
Benefits of Alpha Lipoic Acid
Alpha lipoic acid can be taken for many different reasons to improve health. As previously mentioned, it's an antioxidant and assists in the absorption and effectiveness of other antioxidants, like vitamins C and E. Here are some of the most popular uses for alpha lipoic acid:
Diabetes -- Individuals with diabetes can suffer nerve damage that causes pain, burning and numbness in the limbs. Alpha lipoic acid supplementation may help correct these symptoms in the arms and legs for improved comfort and movement. A 2008 study published in Nutrition reviews, confirmed supplementation with alpha lipoic acid showed positive effects on diabetic neuropathy.
Heart Health -- Antioxidants, like alpha lipoic acid, may also benefit the heart by preventing damage to the cells and keeping the arteries healthy. While not a way to completely prevent heart disease, they may be able to help lower your risk.
Cognitive Function -- Easily crossing the blood-brain barrier, alpha lipoic acid supports the function of the brain and the entire central nervous system. This may help slow or prevent degeneration and support a strong memory for years to come. A 2012 animal study published in the Journal of Alzheimer's disease confirmed alpha lipoic acid reduced oxidative stress and improved memory.
Weight Loss -- When we consume carbohydrates, or sugars, they need to be broken down and utilized as an energy source so they aren't stored as fat throughout the body. Alpha lipoic acid assists in the metabolism of carbohydrates to help you manage your weight. A 2011 study published in The American journal of medicine found 1,800 mg a day of alpha lipoic acid produced modest weight loss in obese patients, prompting further investigation.
Anti-aging -- Alpha lipoic acid can also be applied topically to reduce and prevent the visible signs of aging, like puffiness or fine lines. You can find it in creams and serums due to its anti-inflammatory and antioxidant effects on the tissues.
How to Get More
The body does produce a small amount of alpha lipoic acid. It can also be found in beef and some forms of yeast. But to get a larger amount, supplementation is necessary. Supplements are available in multiple strengths, most often in capsule form. Sometimes, alpha lipoic acid is combined with additional antioxidants.
There are currently no known drug interactions with alpha lipoic acid supplementation. Although rare, these supplements may affect blood sugar levels and cause a skin rash. However, it's always important to check with your doctor before taking any supplements, especially if you're pregnant, breastfeeding or being treated for a medical condition, like diabetes.
Shop for alpha lipoic acid supplements and so much more at eVitamins Canada and save. Let us know how they work for you!
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