Alpha Lipoic Acid
What is Alpha Lipoic Acid and what its natural source?
Alpha Lipoic Acid is a natural antioxidant found in all cells. Like vitamin C, it is known to researchers for years but in recent years growing evidence suggests that it has a benefit effect upon oral intake as well as it applied topically.
Alpha lipoic acid is produced in the liver, and minimal amounts of it received from the food we eat (plant and animal source). Natural production of alpha lipoic acid is decreasing with age, and is declining among people suffering from poor health, including diabetes. Thus, with increasing age and morbidity, increased the usage of dietary supplement that contains alpha lipoic acid.
Alpha lipoic acid dissolves in the water and oil, making it a universal antioxidant that can operate on cells surface and deep within them, as opposed to vitamin C (natural, water soluble) and vitamin E (oil soluble). As an antioxidant that soluble in both phases, it also increases the effectiveness and positive impact of other antioxidants. Presence of Alpha Lipoic Acid in the cell helps maintain the levels of other antioxidants.
What is diabetic neuropathy?
Neuropathy is one of the most common and serious complications of diabetes, and is a major cause in impaired quality of life of diabetes patients. High levels of blood sugar, that characteristic diabetes patient, lead to vascular injury and nerve damage. These damages include neuronal transport problems that expressed in many symptoms like, severe pain, burning sensation, tingling and numbness in the lower limbs, and in advanced situations can lead to amputation. Treatment and right balance of the sugar can delay and even prevent the development of diabetic neuropathy.
Who needs Alpha Lipoic Acid?
Many studies in recent years indicate a connection between Alpha Lipoic Acid and treatment of diabetic neuropathy symptoms. Additionally, as an effective, natural and powerful antioxidant, Alpha Lipoic Acid may help cure a variety of situations affected by oxidative damage. Those studies have demonstrated the efficiency of the Alpha Lipoic Acid in diabetes balance and protection of the body against the damaging effects of the oxidizing agents that are created naturally in our bodies and our environment. Among others, Alpha lipoic acid participates in neuronal transport.
Is Alpha Lipoic Acid helps treat diabetes?
Alpha Lipoic Acid is used for the treatment and reduction of symptoms associated with diabetic neuropathy and damage to nerve cells.
Treatment using Alpha Lipoic Acid supplement, found in studies to be safe to use and does not cause side effects, and can be integrated into existing treatment for diabetes while improving the quality of life of patients.
Diabetic patients taking Alpha Lipoic Acid supplement daily, showed a significant improvement for neuropathic symptoms, including pain and feeling of burning,thanks to encouraging the rehabilitation of nerve fibers and improved blood flow to peripheral nerves. According to the researchers, there was a decrease of up to 50 percent of these symptoms in the group receiving the supplement when compared with placebo.
Several studies have found that Alpha Lipoic Acid can increase the absorption of sugar from the blood into the cells of fat and muscle tissue This behavior mimics insulin action and thus may improve blood sugar balance and has beneficial effect on hemoglobin A1Cand significantly reduce diabetes complications. In addition, studies have found that supplementation Alpha Lipoic Acid improves peripheral insulin sensitivity. Alpha Lipoic Acid was found as having the ability to slow down the destruction of pancreatic cells that are essential for producing insulin.
Is the supplement of Alpha Lipoic Acid also effective in the treatment of heart disease and blood vessels?
Diabetics are at higher risk for heart and cardiovascular diseases, compared to the rest of the population, due to damage to the large and small blood vessels in their bodies. The presence of diabetes increases the incidence of complications and mortality from these diseases.
Oxidative stress is a significant risk factor for heart cardiovascular diseases, and may lead to vascular endothelial injury, atherosclerosis and other complications. Alpha Lipoic Acid has been observed in studies as having a beneficial effect and protects the vascular endothel.
In one of the studies that conducted to show the effectiveness of the Alpha Lipoic Acid, people with metabolic syndrome were given a dose of 300 mg Alpha Lipoic Acid. After four weeks the resrarchers identified a 44 percent improvement in endothelial function, compared to the control group.
These days a long-term controlled studies are conducted to determine whether adding Alpha Lipoic Acid to nutrition of diabetic patients can reduce the risk of vascular complications.
Other functions of the Alpha Lipoic Acid
Alpha Lipoic Acid plays a special role in relieving inflammation (inflammation increases skin aging). It prevents the cell to produce inflammatory factors (cytokines) that are harmful to the cell. Another thing that Alpha Lipoic Acid does it operates a factor in the cell that activates enzymes that digest damaged collagen – collagen that damaged by free radicals. Therefore topical application of the Alpha Lipoic Acid provides the effect of the blurring visible scars and wrinkles.
Alpha Lipoic Acid helps in producing the small molecule NO (Nitric Oxide), which helps control blood flow to the skin. (Incidentally, this is what makes Viagra, based on NO; expands blood vessels ...). The improved blood flow helps reduce swelling and edema, thereby reducing the swelling characteristic under the eyes. It also gives the skin a healthy sheen resulting from good circulation.
Alpha Lipoic Acid prevents the creation of pigmentation spots by inhibiting the enzyme Tyrosinase that responsible for production of the melanin pigment.