Herbal Supplements

What is alpha-lipoic acid (ALA) used for?

A Answers (1)

  • Strong scientific evidence for the use of ALA for these conditions:
    • Neuropathy (nerve pain or damage): Several studies have shown that alpha-lipoic acid (ALA) is an effective treatment for neuropathy (nerve pain or damage) associated with diabetes.
    • Type 2 diabetes: Several studies have shown that ALA may help control and improve blood sugar levels. Additional studies on this topic are needed. Diabetes is a serious illness and should be treated under the supervision of a qualified healthcare provider.
    Unclear scientific evidence of the use of ALA for these conditions:
    • Antioxidant: ALA may increase the production of glutathione and help repair cell damage. Most studies support the antioxidant effects of ALA. Additional research is needed in this area.
    • Carpal tunnel syndrome: Early research suggests that ALA and gamma-linolenic acid may benefit symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome, particularly in the early stages of the disease. Additional research evaluating ALA alone is needed.
    • Cognitive function (associated with HIV): ALA has been studied as a treatment for cognitive impairment (problems with mental function) caused by nerve damage in HIV patients. More high-quality studies are needed.
    • HIV patients on antiretroviral therapy: In HIV patients on antiretroviral therapy, ALA improved white blood cell function. Additional research on this topic is needed.
    • Kidney disease: ALA may improve the blood vessel lining function, possibly benefiting patients with end-stage kidney disease. More research is needed in this area.
    • Migraine: ALA may help prevent migraines. Further research is needed to confirm these results.
    • Pain (burning mouth syndrome): ALA has shown mixed results as a treatment for burning mouth syndrome, a condition that causes the mouth to feel hot or tingly. Additional research is needed.
    • Peripheral artery disease: ALA may reduce pain associated with exercise in people with peripheral artery disease. Additional studies are warranted.
    • Wound healing (in people undergoing hyperbaric oxygen therapy): ALA may reduce tissue damage caused by long-term exposure to high levels of oxygen. More research is needed in this area.
    You should read product labels, and discuss all therapies with a qualified healthcare provider. Natural Standard information does not constitute medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. For more information visit
Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.
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Does alpha-lipoic acid (ALA) help with neuropathy?