Alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA): is an antioxidant that is manufactured in the human body. Antioxidants are substances that work by attacking “free radicals,” waste products created when the body turns food into energy. There are also many sources of free radicals in the environment such as ultraviolet rays, radiation, and toxic chemicals in cigarette smoke, car exhaust, and pesticides. Free radicals cause harmful chemical reactions that can damage cells in the body, making it harder for the body to fight off infections. As a result, a person becomes more susceptible to long term diseases such as diabetes and liver damage.
Alpha Lipoic Acid is fat and water soluble. Once lipoic acid crosses the cell membrane, it is broken down into dihydrofolic acid, which is also an antioxidant. Alpha lipoic acid also recycles other key antioxidants, such as vitamin C, vitamin E, and glutathione.
Diabetic neuropathy is the most common neuropathy and it is associated with a wide range of physical manifestations. The vast majority of patients with clinical diabetic neuropathy have sensory and autonomic conditions. Patients experience pain, trophic changes in the feet, and autonomic disturbances. Occasionally, patients with diabetes can develop focal and multifocal neuropathies that include cranial nerve involvement and limb and truncal neuropathies. This neuropathic pattern tends to occur after 50 years of age, and mostly in patients with long-standing diabetes mellitus. Alpha Lipoic Acid has been shown to protect tissues thereby slowing the degenerative process.
ALA has been used intravenously in Germany for the last 30 years for patients with Adult onset Diabetes. Research has shown that when used regularly Alpha-Lipoic Acid Reduces Insulin Resistance and increase cellular utilization of glucose by more than 50%.
Neuropathy can be from Chemotherapy, diabetes or several other reasons and ALA can help. We have also seen a significant decrease in nerve pain from past injuries when patients get ALA IV’s.
Alpha-lipoic acid may prove useful in the treatment of chronic hepatitis because it relieves stress on the liver and helps rid the body of toxins.
Because ALA can pass easily into the brain, it has protective effects on brain and nerve tissue and shows promise as a treatment for stroke and other brain disorders involving free radical damage. Animals treated with alpha-lipoic acid, for example, suffered less brain damage and had a four times greater survival rate after a stroke than the animals who did not receive this supplement.
Evidence shows strong therapeutic value for Alpha Lipoic Acid in treatment of ocular disorders namely Cataracts and Glaucoma. A majority of elderly citizens in the US have experienced cataracts and have had surgery to remove them. What about prevention? ALA can be used to prevent the return of the cataracts after surgery. For those who have Glaucoma, Alpha Lipoic Acid can be used during their treatment process to further enhance the treatment of the disease.
Ask your Physician how Alpha Lipoic Acid can help you in your recovery process!