Alpha-lipoic acid is an antioxidant that is a vitamin-like chemical produced inside a laboratory. Sources of alpha-lipoic acid include spinach, broccoli, kidney and liver, among others.
Patients with diabetes and those suffering from burning pain and numbness in the arms and legs are also treated with alpha-lipoic acid.
Some individuals take alpha-lipoic acid to combat chronic fatigues syndrome, memory loss, heart diseases, cancer and liver-diseases, to name a few.
Patients who are suffering from eye-related diseases such as retina damage, glaucoma and cataracts also take alpha-lipoic acid.
How does alpha-lipoic acid work?
Alpha-lipoic acid can help in the prevention of specific types of cell damage within the body. It can also aid in the restoration of vitamin levels in the body like vitamin E and vitamin C. Some studies also indicate that it can help in the improvement of both the conduction and function of neurons for those with diabetes.
Alpha-lipoic acid breaks down the carbohydrates in the body which in turn produces energy that can be used by the other organs.
It also functions as an anti-oxidant wherein it gives protection to the brain that is suffering from injury or damage. Patients with liver diseases also take alpha-lipoic acid.
Research shows that the alpha-lipoic acid can be taken by most adults orally or through intravenous means. Some patients however may suffer from mouth rashes when taking alpha-lipoic acid.
There are no conclusive studies on the effects of taking alpha-lipoic acid by those who are pregnant and breastfeeding. Doctor’s advice to patients is to be on the safe side and avoid taking it.
Those who take alcoholic drinks while taking alpha-lipoic acid should take a thiamine supplement since alcohol causes thiamine levels to go down. Patients with low thiamine levels while taking alpha-lipoic acid face some health risks.