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June 2019 Health Newsletter


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» ALPHA LIPOIC ACID
» ACA Joins Voices Coalition to Increase Access to Non-opioid Pain Treatments
» Fit At 50 Means Less Chronic Disease
» Active Kids Think Better

ALPHA LIPOIC ACID

Alpha-Lipoic Acid

What is alpha-lipoic acid? Why do we need it?

Alpha-lipoic acid (ALA) is an antioxidant manufactured in the body. It is sometimes referred to as the ?universal? antioxidant because, unlike most antioxidants, it is soluble in both fat and water. In addition to being manufactured by the body, it can be found in some foods and supplements (see below).

ALA has several benefits, particularly for people with diabetes. It enhances glucose uptake in people with type-2 diabetes, inhibits the process of glybosylation (in which sugar molecules attach themselves to proteins), and can reduce nerve damage and pain caused by diabetes. Preliminary evidence suggests that ALA can improve visual function in people with glaucoma. Test-tube studies show that ALA can stop the HIV virus from replicating, but whether ALA supplements can help people infected with HIV remains unclear at this point.

How much alpha-lipoic acid should I take?

As of this writing, there is no clear evidence that any particular dose of ALA provides a benefit for any particular condition. In the abovementioned glaucoma study, researchers provided subjects with 150 mg of ALA per day. Other studies typically use between 750 and 800 mg per day. Some practitioners recommend 20-50 mg of alpha-lipoic acid daily to provide general antioxidant protection.

What are some good sources of alpha-lipoic acid? What forms are available?

Small amounts of alpha-lipoic acid are produced naturally by the body. Some red meats ? particularly liver ? are believed to be good sources of ALA; supplements are also available.

What can happen if I don't get enough alpha-lipoic acid? What can happen if I take too much? Are there any side-effects I should be aware of?

Because alpha-lipoic acid is produced naturally in the body, deficiencies are not known to occur in humans. However, for people who take large doses of ALA supplements, some side-effects may occur, including skin rash, and diabetics run the risk of suffering hypoglycemia. Long-term use of alpha-lipoic acid in animals has been shown to interfere with the actions of the vitamin biotin, but research on humans has yet to be conducted.

As always, make sure to consult with a licensed health care provider before you begin taking alpha-lipoic acid or any other herbal remedy or dietary supplement.


References

  • Busse E, Zimmer G, Schorpohl B, et al. Influence of alpha-lipoic acid on intracellular glutathione in vitro and in vivo.Arzneimittelforschung1992;42:829-31.
  • Filina AA, Davydova NG, Endrikhovskii SN, et al. Lipoic acid as a means of metabolic therapy of open-angle glaucoma.Vestn Oftalmol1995;111:6-8.
  • Lykkesfeldt J, Hagen TM, Vinarsky V, et al. Age-associated decline in ascorbic acid concentration, recycling, and biosynthesis in rat hepatocytes - reversal with (R)-alpha-lipoic acid supplementation.FASEB J1998;12:1183-9.
  • Nichols TW Jr. Alpha-lipoic acid: biological effects and clinical implications.Altern Med Rev1997;2:177-83.
  • Packer L, Witt EH, Tritschler HJ. Alpha-lipoic acid as a biological antioxidant.Free Radic Biol Med1995;19:227-50.

Author: Nichols
Source: TYH
Copyright: TYH 1997


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ACA Joins Voices Coalition to Increase Access to Non-opioid Pain Treatments

The American Chiropractic Association (ACA) has joined forces with Voices for Non-Opioid Choices ("Voices"), a nonpartisan coalition of more than 20 organizations committed to preventing opioid addiction before it starts by increasing patient access to non-opioid therapies and approaches for managing acute pain.  Chiropractors' use of spinal manipulation as a non-drug approach to back pain treatment is especially relevant in combating the U.S. opioid epidemic.  Low back pain is one of the most common conditions for which prescription opioid pain medications are prescribed even though research shows the drugs have limited effectiveness in relieving back pain and carry higher risks.  The Voices coalition seeks to increase access to multiple non-opioid and non-drug approaches so that patients can manage their pain more safely and effectively--particularly pain after surgery.  According to Voices, pain after surgery is a common path to opioid abuse, misuse and addiction, with about 3 million Americans becoming "persistent" opioid users each year following a surgical procedure.  The Voices coalition includes both patient and provider organizations such as the American Nurses Association, the Alliance of Orthopaedic Executives, the American Medical Women’s Association and the National Safety Council.  "We are excited to join Voices and its efforts to increase access to non-opioid approaches to pain treatment.  Chiropractic services and other non-drug approaches are an important first line of defense against pain," said ACA President Robert C. Jones, DC.  "Beyond the risks of addiction and overdose, prescription opioid medications that numb pain may convince a patient that a musculoskeletal condition such as back pain is less severe than it is or that it has healed. This misunderstanding can lead to overexertion and a delay in the healing process or even permanent injury."

The American Chiropractic Association (ACA) is the largest professional chiropractic organization in the United States.  ACA attracts the most principled and accomplished chiropractors, who understand that it takes more to be called an ACA chiropractor.  We are leading our profession in the most constructive and far-reaching ways -- by working hand in hand with other health care professionals, by lobbying for pro-chiropractic legislation and policies, by supporting meaningful research and by using that research to inform our treatment practices.  We also provide professional and educational opportunities for all our members and are committed to being a positive and unifying force for the practice of modern chiropractic.

Author: ChiroPlanet.com
Source: Acatoday.com; May 20, 2019.
Copyright: ProfessionalPlanets.com LLC 2019


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Fit At 50 Means Less Chronic Disease

In a finding that should come as a surprise to no one, a new U.S. study concluded that physically fit 50 year olds suffered less from chronic conditions like heart disease, diabetes, Alzheimer's disease and colon cancer, as they aged. The study of over 18,600 men and women, linked treadmill tests, done at the age of 50 and meant to establish cardiovascular health, to an additional 26 years of Medicare claims. Men in the lowest fifth of fitness scores in the initial evaluation experienced a rate of chronic disease of 28 percent per year. In contrast, the the rate of the top fifth was 16 percent per year. In women, the rates were 20 percent and 11 percent. Currently, national guidelines recommend 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise or 75 minutes of high-intensity exercise per week. While the findings do not prove that exercise cuts the risk of chronic disease, it does appear that it makes a difference as we age. However, researchers added that the study did not take into account genetic and environmental factors which may affect the chronic disease rates.

Author: ChiroPlanet.com
Source: Archives of Internal Medicine, online August 27, 2012.
Copyright: ProfessionalPlanets.com LLC 2012


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Active Kids Think Better

According to researchers, children who participate in moderate to vigorous physical activity not only benefit physically, they also improve their cognitive performance and brain function. Results from a new study involving 221 children aged 7 to 9 show regular participation in moderate to vigorous physical activity increases their ability to block out distractions, increase focus and improve their multi-tasking skills. U.S. and European exercise guidelines for children and teens currently call for a minimum of 60 minutes of moderate to vigorous physical activity per day. If you're a parent with a child or teen, encourage and assist them in becoming and staying physically active. Enroll them in after school programs that involve physical activity. Get them into a sports league. Join the YMCA. Take them to the park. Play in the back yard. Be safe but definitely be active!

Author: ChiroPlanet.com
Source: Pediatrics, online September 29, 2014.
Copyright: ProfessionalPlanets.com LLC 2014


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