How Alpha-Lipoic Acid Can Help You Lose Weight

Alpha-lipoic acid(ALA) is an antioxidant that is produced by the human body and is found in every body cell. It is a co-factor in the production of ATP from glucose. ATP (adenosine tri-phosphate) is the utilized in the body as the fundamental energy source and all metabolic activities require it. Antioxidants are substances that attack free radicals. Free radicals are a harmful by product of body metabolism. Free radicals can damage body cells, decrease the effectiveness of the immune system, and cause cancer. They in turn damages the organs of your body and are carcinogenic.

ALA has also proven itself effective for weight reduction. ALA is not normally used for quick weight loss. However, consistent use can result in weight loss along with the other health benefits conveyed by ALA. It will increase the rate the glucose is taken into your cells and increase your metabolic rate. The result is that more energy is used faster in the cells of your body, with fewer calories available for storage as fat. Furthermore, the enhanced glucose metabolism with resultant decreases in blood sugar levels will certainly help prevent the storage of belly fat. The decrease in fat storage occurs because inadequate glucose uptake results in increased insulin production. These elevated insulin levels result in fat storage due to the highly anabolic nature of insulin.

Taking alpha-lipoic acid helps another diabetes-related condition called autonomic neuropathy, which affects the nerves supplying the heart. A clinical study determined that people with autonomic neuropathy, which is very common in diabetics, improved when taking 800mg of alpha-lipoic acid daily, compared to a control group which took a placebo.

Alpha-lipoic acid can lower blood sugar levels, and its ability to kill free radicals may help reduce pain, burning, itching, tingling, and numbness in people who have nerve damage caused by diabetes (called peripheral neuropathy). Europeans have used ALA for the purpose for many years. In one European study twelve subjects with normal glucose tolerance served as a control group in terms of insulin sensitivity. At the end of the treatment period, insulin sensitivity of diabetic patients was significantly increased: short-term oral alpha-lipoic acid treatment increases peripheral insulin sensitivity in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus.

It is worth mentioning that alpha-lipoic acid is not the same as alpha linolenic acid, which is an omega-3 fatty acid that may help heart health. Confusion can arise because both are sometimes abbreviated ALA.

Unlike other antioxidants, alpha-lipoic acid is both fat and water soluble. This renders it effective in all body spaces. In addition, antioxidants are depleted as they attack free radicals, but evidence suggests alpha-lipoic acid may help regenerate these other antioxidants and make them active again. Researchers think that ALA works with vitamins C, E, and glutathione to recycle them when they are depleted.

Numerous studies have been performed indication that ALA has health benefits including enhancing cognition and protecting the nervous system. ALA can also be an useful adjunct in our efforts to achieve rapid weight loss.

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