Alpha-lipoic acid supplements (ALA) are super-antioxidants that break many of the rules regarding antioxidant behavior. Dr. Lester Packer, one of the world’s foremost antioxidant research scientists and antiaging expert, calls alpha lipoic acid the most versatile and powerful antioxidant in the antioxidant network family.
Alpha-lipoic acid is unique in that is is both fat- and water-soluble, so it can work everywhere, which is why it is sometimes called the universal antioxidant.
Alpha-lipoic acid's primary job is to allow mitochondria (the power plants in your cells) to turn glucose into energy, increasing your energy levels.
In addition to its ability to neutralize a wide variety of free radicals, ALA is the only antioxidant that can recycle and replenish all of the so-called network antioxidants: vitamin E and C, glutathione and CoQ-10. Alpha-lipoic acid is also capable of recycling itself, the only antioxidant capable of doing this.
The primary health benefits you may get from ALA supplements are:
ALA supplements may play a role in the
prevention and/or treatment of the following:
Alpha-lipoic acid is typically available in doses of 50-600 milligrams, sometimes combined with the amino acid acetyl-l-carnitine, which works to boost its antioxidant capacity. Acetyl-l-carnitine assists in the transport of fat into the mitochondria of the cell, where the fat is burned to produce energy.
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More information on lipoic acid and related antioxidants: