Alpha lipoic acid: what it is and what the scientific evidence says about its use
Unfortunately, lipoic acid has become news in recent days. Known as alpha lipoic acid, this substance it is sold as a nutritional supplement in order, among other things, to burn fat, absorb glucose or improve our cholesterol levels.
Besides that, It is considered to be an antioxidant, and some of the websites that sell them indicate that it is able to slow down aging, decrease inflammation, increase our energy levels, etc. It is a supplement that can be purchased easily in herbalists or online.
What exactly is liposic acid?
It is an enzyme, composed of several isomers, and considered to be involved in some enzymatic functions, as in oxidative decarboxylations of keto acids, as well as as a catalyst for a series of chemical reactions.
It is an enzyme that is not an essential nutrient for humans, although we can find it in small doses in food like broccoli, some legumes, or red meat.
In correct doses (50-100 milligrams), although it is not necessary for our body, it does not seem to generate any problem. However, in very high doses it can cause headaches, tingling, metabolic failure, cramps, etc.
Lack of scientific evidence about its effects
As far as its possible benefits are concerned, there is some research that suggests that this enzyme could have certain benefits, such as anti-inflammatory drugs. But nevertheless, the evidence is weak and preliminary. Therefore, the EFSA (European Food Safety Authority) has not considered the allegations that speak of these benefits as good.
Thus, they consider that It is not proven that it gives us antioxidant properties, nor that it helps cholesterol levels. Nor do they find evidence on clear that it improves blood glucose concentration or that it helps our cell and genetic regeneration.
At the moment, and as with other supplements, the sale of alpha lipoic acid is not regulated, so it can be purchased without a prescription. This does not mean that we can consume it freely without any risk.
From Vitónica we remind you that most supplements are not necessary - except B12 in the case of vegetarian or vegan people -. With proper nutrition we can cover all our nutritional needs. The use of supplements It is only recommended in cases where it is due to a medical recommendation and specify the necessary doses.