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March 09, 2023
With Alpha Lipoic Acid (or ALA) appearing as an added ingredient in so many supplements, you may be wondering what makes this so appealing?
If you have taken any supplements lately containing L-Carnitine, you have more than likely at least seen the words "Alpha Lipoic Acid".
In short, it is an antioxidant that helps breakdown carbohydrates into energy. Sounds appealing, right?
In this post we will go in depth about what alpha lipoic acid is, what it's used for and its benefits, potential side effects, and why you may consider adding it to your diet.
But first, we are going to dive into 5 of the best ALA supplements on the market in case you already know about it and want to see the best options. Hopefully by the end of this article you will have found the perfect ALA supplement to add to your dietary routine.
** This post may contain affiliate links where we make a small commission on purchases made at no cost to you. We only recommend products we think you will find valuable.**
Immunovites Alpha Lipoic Acid is our pick for overall best ALA supplement.
Giving a whopping 600mg of R-Alpha Lipoic Acid, Immunovites does something that almost no other Alpha Lipoic Acid supplement is doing, separating R-Alpha Lipoic Acid and S-Alpha Lipoic Acid.
The R-Alpha Lipoic Acid is naturally occurring in the body and is what contributes to its amazing antioxidant properties unlike the S-Alpha Lipoic Acid which is made by chemical manufacturing and is much less biologically active.
Immunovites have found a way stabilize R-Alpha Lipoic Acid by binding it to sodium, so you get a full 600mg dose every serving. Studies have shown that the bound R-Alpha Lipoic Acid has up to 40 times more absorption, which means you will be getting the most out of every dose.
Each serving comes in two vegetarian capsules, with 150mg of sodium (as the binding agent) and 600mg of R-Alpha Lipoic Acid, and will set you back under $40 for a 30 day supply.
This supplement is also non-GMO and is GMP certified.
Nutricost tops our list for best budget Alpha Lipoic Acid, coming in at less than $30 for a 240 capsule bottle, which equates to 120 servings.
This product has an advertised 600mg per serving of Alpha Lipoic Acid, that does include both R-Alpha Lipoic Acid and S-Alpha Lipoic Acid. Just know ahead of time that it is made from a 50:50 ratio, and S-Alpha Lipoic Acid is not as biologically active.
That being said, Nutricost does have this product third party tested, is free from the eight major allergens, and is GMP compliant.
American Standard Alpha Lipoic Acid gets the top spot for the most potent Alpha Lipoic Acid on our list.
Boasting an impressive 1,300mg per dose, American Standard blows the competition out of the water when it comes to dosage size. Even accounting for the combination of R-Alpha Lipoic Acid and S-Alpha Lipoic Acid, you are still getting a massive 650mg dose of bioactive R-Alpha Lipoic Acid!
American Standard also has upped the usual 30 day supply to a 45 day supply. American Standard supplements are third party tested and manufactured in a cGMP facility. All of these benefits and it will only set you back around $20 per bottle!
Horbaach Alpha Lipoic Acid with Biotin offers 600mg of Alpha Lipoic Acid along with 999mcg of biotin. Biotin is a water soluble B-vitamin that improves the efficacy of the beneficial metabolic effects of ALA such as healthy mitochondrial functions, nerve health, and increased antioxidants.
Horbaach ALA comes in a bottle of 240 capsules for around $20, but it should also be noted that the serving size is three capsules, meaning you are getting 80 servings per bottle. This Alpha Lipoic Acid product is non-GMO, certified GMP, and lab tested.
Best Naturals Acetyl L-Carnitine and Alpha Lipoic Acid is our pick for best carnitine/ALA combo.
Carnitine is another well known nutrient that increases fatty acid metabolism for energy production.
The combination of these two possibly anti-aging supplements may improve cognitive function, increase energy production, and possibly help reduce hypertension.
This company has broken down these supplements into 525mg of Acetyl L-Carnitine HCL and 225mg of Alpha Lipoic Acid per serving which is only one capsule. This is a lower amount of ALA than other products, but the addition of L-Carnitine makes up for some of it, and for the low price of around $20 it is easy to overlook.
These L-Carnitine/ALA supplements are third party tested, GMP compliant, and are non-GMO & gluten free, as well as free from major allergens.
Alpha Lipoic Acid is an antioxidant produced naturally by the body. It helps to convert glucose into a power source. Unlike other antioxidants, ALA is both water and fat-soluble, meaning it can work throughout your entire system.
It is commonly found in red meats, organ meats, and brewer's yeast.
Alpha lipoic acid provides multiple health benefits that we cover below. You'll be able to see why this supplement is becoming ever more popular.
ALA can help improve nerve blood flow and in clinical trials has shown that it improves distal nerve conduction in diabetic neuropathy. ALA has been used by diabetics to help relieve neuropathic pain symptoms, and can start working in as little as 3 weeks, which is remarkably quick for supplements with antioxidant properties.
ALA has been found to help reduce C-Reactive protein, interlukin-6, and tumor necrosis factor-alpha, which are key markers for inflammation.
The reduction in oxidative stress and inflammation can help stop osteoporosis causing bone resorbing activity.
In addition, there is some promise in showing ALA being a possible way to help treat polycystic ovary syndrome.
There are several studies that show that ALA taken as a medication for diabetes can help with blood sugar control by lowering glucose levels. As mentioned before ALA's ability to kill free radicals can help treat diabetic peripheral neuropathy pain caused by diabetic related nerve damage. There also have been some recent studies that show ALA improves insulin sensitivity in patients with type-2 diabetes.
There are mixed feelings on how efficient Alpha Lipoic Acids are as weight loss supplements, but there is proof that it can help. There is some proof that ALA can inhibit a particular enzyme in the hypothalamus, which will in turn signal your stomach into thinking it's full. Also some studies found that in control groups, the group taking ALA vs a placebo did end up losing more weight.
The most common side effects found with taking oral ALA are heartburn, nausea, headache, and vomiting. As with starting all new supplements, you should check with a doctor to make sure none of your current medications have any negative interactions.
Below we cover the main factors you should consider when shopping for an ALA supplement.
Knowing whether or not you want a solely ALA product or a combination such as what Best Naturals and Horbaach offer above can be a huge part in which supplements to buy. The best bet is to go with R-Alpha Lipoic Acid, since it is the part of ALA that is found naturally and reaps all the benefits along with it.
Third party testing is extremely important and should factor into your decision. Knowing exactly what is in your supplements should be a top priority for anyone looking to ingest something.
This is going to vary pretty widely, and if you do decided the R-ALA is the way you want to go, then you are probably looking to spend a little extra money.
Getting a feel for what people that have actually tried the product is essential to make an informed decision. Seeing both the good and bad can give you an idea of whether it works and if there were problems, how the manufacturing company dealt with them.
There are a whole host of possible benefits to taking ALA such as decreasing skin aging, improving memory, reducing inflammation, being beneficial in treating diabetic related pain symptoms, and weight loss.
All of that with a low risk of side effects makes it even more appealing.
The most effective form of lipoic acid is the naturally occurring R-Alpha Lipoic Acid which until recently was not able to be found commercially due to its unstable nature.
Immunovites ALA is one of the brands that has found a way to bond R-ALA to another ingredient to make it viable.
If you are talking about in food, then red meat and organ meats are the highest sources. If not, any of our five supplements we've reviewed above are a great way to intake ALA.
Any other vitamin or herbal supplements that naturally lower blood sugar levels should be avoided.
Now that you've gone through our review of our top five ALA supplements, you have a pretty firm idea of what adding Alpha Lipoic Acid supplements to your diet can do for you.
So what are you waiting for? Try ALA for yourself and start enjoying some of the same benefits as the others who've been using this supplement.
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