Alpha Lipoic Acid Benefits Our Relationship With Sugar
Straight away I’m sure you’re thinking, fantastic! I can eat sugary foods and alpha lipoic acid will do all the dirty work for me. Not so fast.
Alpha lipoic acid benefits our bodies not by eradicating sugar in our systems but by converting it into a store of available energy.
Alpha lipoic acid (ALA) is found deep inside the cell, in the mitochondria, where it helps microscopic energy factories convert glucose into energy in the form of ATP (adenosine triphosphate).
Now if you have spent any time Googling this don’t get confused with alpha-linolenic acid - an omega-3 fatty acid. Alpha lipoic acid is a fatty acid actually created by our bodies, but it can also be obtained through meats, organs (not the kind in churches) and certain vegetables like spinach and broccoli.
It’s not only essential for energy production and the proper utilisation of sugar, but also as an antioxidant, helping to neutralize free-radicals, protect DNA and ‘recycle’ other antioxidants like glutathione and vitamins C and E.
Alpha Lipoic Acid Benefits The Ageing Process
Originating within our very own bodies, alpha lipoic acid production, like so many other processes, decreases as we age. So the alpha lipoic acid benefits we would usually manufacture ourselves need to be provided in supplemental forms.
This may prove extremely helpful for healthy ageing and the prevention of age-related diseases.
Alpha lipoic acid can also be considered for diabetic support, weight loss and cardiovascular health, for which it has been used in Germany for over 50 years.
Interestingly, alpha lipoic acid is bound and neutralized by the protein avidin; which is found in raw egg whites.
It’s best to avoid consuming them together, so if you are having your Athletic Greens in the morning make sure you poach your eggs well.
Alpha Lipoic Acid Benefits Antioxidant Activity
Alpha lipoic acid has been included in Athletic Greens to help with antioxidant protection from the stresses of modern day life, both internally and externally.
Popular as a potent antioxidant and antioxidant “recycler” and touted by many as a potent weight loss supplement, alpha lipoic acid has positive effects on blood glucose levels.
However, this effect is not as strong as many weight loss “experts” make it out to be.
From all that we know and that is as yet undiscovered about alpha lipoic acid benefits, it is most notably credited with:
→ Increased antioxidant activity
→ Reduced free-radical damage
→ Decreased inflammation
→ Restoration of cellular glutathione (the body’s master antioxidant), as well as other antioxidant vitamins such as C and E.
That makes alpha lipoic acid great for:
✔ Healthy ageing
→ By protecting against free-radicals and DNA damage.
✔ Blood glucose control
→ By helping mitochondria turn glucose into ATP.
✔ Improving the function of the heart and protecting against cardiovascular disease
→ By enhancing the activity of CoQ10, crucial for healthy heart function.
→ By reducing inflammation and oxidative stress, which play key roles in the development of heart disease .
→ By lowering blood pressure.
✔ Diabetes and diabetic complications
→ By reducing insulin resistance, especially in overweight adults with Type 2 Diabetes.
✔ Protecting the liver
→ By preserving glutathione, which helps the liver neutralize toxic substances.
✔ Protecting against neurodegeneration
→ By reducing inflammation and protecting against oxidative stress (as a result of elevated blood sugar)
✔ For weight loss
→ By improving glucose and fat metabolism, ALA helps the body use food for fuel instead of storing it as fat.
→ By reducing chemerin, a molecule associated with weight gain and metabolic dysfunction.
→ By increasing insulin sensitivity.
✔ For chelating heavy metals
→ By aiding in the process of removing heavy metals from our blood stream.
Due to these numerous alpha lipoic acid benefits, the following conditions may be aided by alpha lipoic acid supplementation:
→ Memory loss
→ Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
→ Metabolic Syndrome
→ Diseases of the heart and blood vessels
→ Lyme Disease
→ Liver Disease
→ Intermittent claudication and other circulatory issues
→ Polycystic Ovaries
Alpha Lipoic Acids Supplementary dosages
As mentioned, our bodies produce ALA naturally, but our production of it declines as we age. On top of that, it’s not commonly found in many foods.
For these reasons, it has been included in Athletic Greens, particularly for its beneficial effects on blood sugar levels and also because alpha lipoic acid supports the immune system.
While no upper limit for alpha lipoic acid consumption in humans has been established, protocols using 600mg of alpha lipoic acid per day for a minimum of 10 weeks showed the most improvement.
In some cases a higher dose of 1,800mg per day has been effective for weight loss.
ALA supplementation has also been linked to helping improve the insulin sensitivity in women suffering from Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS).
When prescribed to one woman who had struggled with PCOS and had fought to lose weight for many years, a regular dose of alpha lipoic acid supplementation enabled her to lose weight without making any other changes to her daily routine of diet and exercise.
ALA doses of up to 2,400mg per day have reportedly been used in clinical trials, with no adverse effects.
Alpha Lipoic Acid Benefits With a Little Help From Some Friends
Alpha lipoic acid benefits are a well-understood key player in energy metabolism and production, with known antioxidant effects and a long history of use in countries like Germany.
It is most indicated for diabetes and diabetic complications, but can also be considered for anti-ageing, cardiovascular health and any condition requiring strong antioxidant support.
We have assembled a team of strong antioxidants in Athletic Greens, such as acerola, bilberry, cocoa bean polyphenol extract, green tea extract, vitamins C and E.
Alpha lipoic acid has the ability to help “recycle” antioxidants such as these.
It can also enhance the effects of the COQ10 contained within Athletic Greens.
In terms of immediate ailments, it is difficult to make claims. ALA supplementation is more of a long term investment.
The only short term claim you could potentially make about alpha lipoic acid is that it may help to improve skin in a reasonable timeframe due to its antioxidant effect and its antioxidant “recycling” effect.
As the skin is our largest organ, that is certainly a great payoff in the short term while we wait for all of the longer term alpha lipoic acid benefits to kick in.