This is just a quick research update on a new study on alpha-lipoic acid (ALA). In a study involving 57 patients with type 2 diabetes, supplementation with ALA (300 mg/day) for a period of 8 weeks was found to be associated with significant decrease in fasting blood glucose and post-prandial glucose levels, IR-Homeostasis Model Assessment index, and glutathione peroxidase levels.
The authors state, "This study supports the use of ALA as an antioxidant in the care of diabetic patients."
What most people don't realize about ALA is that only the R(+) form is active in humans. Many supplements have an equal amount of the S(-) isomer, which in the best-case-scenario is inert, and in the worst-case, may counteract the benefits of the R(+) isomer (this I've heard a number of times, but haven't confirmed it with my own research, FYI).
Also, most don't know that ALA is unstable at room temperature and should be stored in the fridge (and buy this from the cooler section at your healthfood store). There are, however, a number of "stabilized" ALA products on the market, so make sure if you're not buying from the fridge, you look for a stabilized product (typically it will be listed as a sodium salt of ALA in the ingredient list).
Source: Effect of alpha-lipoic acid on blood glucose, insulin resistance and glutathione peroxidase of type 2 diabetic patients
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