A major challenge to winning the battle against the negative effects of aging is weight gain. Obesity, or even just being overweight, increases the odds of our suffering from a host of conditions and illnesses that are best avoided. These include, but are not limited to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, high blood pressure, and more. Fortunately, there have been recent studies that have shown lipoic acid and weight loss may go hand in hand.
Over 70% of Americans are overweight or obese with levels that are not too different in many other countries. Eating less and exercising more will take care of weight problems, but it is difficult to change long-standing habits, and results take such a long time. The promise of a fast, easy way to slenderness is enticing. Such pills and products always seem to be on offer. How do we know which are effective and safe and which will not lower the number on the scale, but will lighten our wallets and may even cause us harm?
Lipoic acid is an antioxidant that is found in some foods and is also manufactured in the body. Its primary role seems to be regulating blood sugar, but lipoic acid may also be beneficial in dealing with diabetes, the brain, the liver, blood pressure glaucoma, cancer cells, scars, and aging in general. Lipoic acid is also helpful in that it increases the effectiveness of other antioxidants like vitamins.
Before you rush off to order some lipoic acid, do check out its possible side effects, its cost, and its effectiveness as a weight-loss tool.
Lipoic acid has been shown to do a lot of good things in the body, several of which are anti-aging. Much work has been on the natural lipoic acid our bodies produce. Whether supplemental lipoic acid (how much and what kind) will do still more good or not has yet to be established.
Weight loss due to lipoic acid supplements is likely due to different hormonal factors. As older women, weight gain and loss aren’t just about what we eat. It’s usually due to a complex change in hormones.
With respect to weight loss, some subjects in some of the studies did lose some weight with the supplements. However, the subjects saw improved results when the supplements were taken with a moderate diet and exercise.
Lipoic acid supplements are generally considered safe except when taken in high doses. However, there may be bad reactions. Side effects can include digestive problems like nausea, diarrhea, and vomiting. It can also affect blood sugar levels. Rashes may appear on the skin; breathing could become difficult and cold symptoms such as coughs and fever can appear.
Lipoic acid can be expensive, but the price is only one factor in determining the cost of lipoic acid supplementation. There are several types of lipoic acid and they function differently. Supplements may contain one or more types. The jury is still out on which type and how much lipoic acid should be taken.
If you are cautious and can afford it, lipoic acid supplements may be worth a try, especially if you add the tried and true practices of eating less and moving more. However, the overall effect of lipoic supplementation by itself appears to be negligible. We still need more research in regards to its effectiveness in weight loss.
There is also less quality control of products in the market. So please consult your doctor or physician before introducing a supplement to your diet.
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