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lipoic, lipoic acid, alpha lipoic, alpha-lipoic acid, antioxidant

Prevention of free radical damage
Alpha-Lipoic Acid - powerful and universal antioxidant

A
lpha-lipoic acid is a naturally-occurring antioxidant compound that is synthesized by plants and animals, including humans. Although our bodies produce lipoic acid, and it can also be found in some foods such as potatoes, red meat, liver, and yeast, these sources do not provide enough to achieve optimum benefits from it. Experts recommends 50 mg/day of lipoic acid - much more than is normally available to the body - as a preventive measure against damage caused by free-radical attacks. This is why it should be taken as a nutritional supplement by anyone who wants to retard the body's aging process.
Alpha-lipoic acid, also known as thioctic acid, is a powerful antioxidant which protects the body-tissues. It might be called the perfect antioxidant, because its uniquely valuable property is that alpha-lipoic acid is able to deactivate both fat-soluble and water-soluble free radicals. Because of this, it protects both lipoproteins and cell-membranes - actions no other antioxidant can combine. Scientific abstracts

Alpha-Lipoic Acid and metabolism
Alpha-lipoic acid is in fact used by our bodies to speed-up metabolism and support energy production. There have been hundreds of scientific studies over the last 40 years which have revealed how lipoic acid energizes metabolism. In addition, recent studies show how it protects our genetic material and slows aging.
Another function of lipoic acid is that it increases the bioavailability of several very important nutrients, including vitamins B, C, and E, helping to conserve them and maintain healthy levels of them in the body. When the body is deficient in lipoic acid, other antioxidant substances do not properly "network together"; and so, providing an adequate supply of lipoic acid can produce a superadditive effect. Scientific abstracts
Alpha-Lipoic Acid and diabetes
In non-diabetic patients alpha-lipoic acid helps to normalize blood sugar levels. Both insulin-dependent and non-insulin-dependent diabetics will be interested to learn that lipoic acid has been used for nearly 30 years in Europe to cope with diabetic neuropathy, to help regulate blood sugar, and to prevent diabetic cardiopathy. Scientific abstracts
Alpha-Lipoic Acid and HIV
New studies have indicated alpha-lipoic acid as a possible HIV-inhibitor. Scientific abstracts
Alpha-Lipoic Acid and protection of the brain
Supplementation with Alpha-lipoic acid can increase the levels in the brain of the protective compound glutathione. This substance has a very important function; glutathione protects the brain from damage caused by free radicals. Scientific abstracts
Alpha-Lipoic Acid and the nervous system
Alpha-lipoic acid also increases creatine intake. Studies show that alpha-lipoic acid is beneficial for the nervous system, due to its ability to protect and repair neurons; it not only protects, but may even be involved in regenerating nerves. As indicated above, it is being studied for its possible role in the treatment of Parkinson's disease and Alzheimer's disease. Scientific abstracts
Alpha-Lipoic Acid and radiation sickness
Alone or together with vitamin E and vitamin C, alpha-lipoic acid is usefull in nuclear-radiation exposure, lessening indices of oxidative damage and normalizing organ functions. Scientific abstracts

Some foods with relatively high alpha-lipoic acid content
Food
Serving
Alpha-lipoic acid (mcg/serving)
Beef kidney
3 ounces (85 g)
19
Beef heart
3 ounces (85 g)
32
Beef liver
3 ounces (85 g)
14
Spinach
1 cup raw (30 g)
5
Broccoli
1 cup raw (71 g)
4
Tomato
1 medium (123 g)
3
Peas
1 cup raw (145 g)
7
Brussel sprouts
1 cup raw (88 g)
3