It is rare that a natural supplement is discovered that can not only assist in weight loss and body composition, but also improve overall health while increasing energy levels. Alpha Lipoic Acid (or ALA) is one such chemical, and to top it all off, it is widely sold at a price that would suit any budget.
What Is It?
Alpha Lipoic Acid is a naturally occurring chemical that the body produces in order to metabolize glucose into ATP. It acts as a nutrient partitioner- basically what this means is that it is responsible for converting the foods we eat into energy to be used. ALA is an insulin mimicking agent – it speeds glucose from the bloodstream, helping you process the foods you eat and making your body more sensitive to insulin. This ensures that carbohydrates will be used for fuel, and not stored as bodyfat, making ALA a current staple for fitness enthusiasts and dieters.
In addition, ALA serves as a powerful antioxidant that removes free radicals (unstable molecules that steal electrons from other molecules) from the cells, which in excess can lead to inflammation, heart disease, premature aging, and other chronic illnesses. By increasing the production of glutathione it functions to dissolve other toxic substances in the liver and promote overall wellness.
How Can It Help Me?
- Allows for a more efficient breakdown of carbohydrates -lessens fat gain and increases energy
- Significantly boosts immune system and wards off diseases
- Helps fights symptoms of aging
- Assists with detoxification
- Increases the benefits derived from Vitamin E and C
- Limits lens and retina degeneration and lessons symptoms of cataracts
How Should I Take It?
Take one 300 mg capsule of ALA up to three times a day on an empty stomach, 30 minutes prior to eating (preferably a meal containing carbs). Make sure to eat shortly afterwards, as it has been known to lower blood sugar and can cause mild dizziness if this is not followed. Diabetics should consult a doctor prior to taking ALA, as it may conflict with their current medications.
Where Can I Find It?
Alpha Lipoic Acid is commonly found in health stores and online sites in a variety of forms. In addition to the basic ALA form, it is also available as R-ALA and Na-RALA, which are alternate forms that increase bio availability (ensuring that the full amount reaches your body). Although they are more effective for this reason, the price also tends to be steeper. (Note that these forms are more potent than normal ALA and require about half the dose.)