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Alpha-Lipoic Acid Reduces Diabetic Neuropathy Symptoms

Researchers from Russia and Israel reported in the November 2006 edition of Diabetes Care, on a multi-center randomized, double-blinded, placebo-controlled trial using the antioxidant alpha lipoic acid in 181 patients suffering with diabetic polyneuropathy, elevated blood sugar and damaged nerve endings. The 181 participants were split into four groups with one quarter receiving once-daily oral doses of 600 mg of alpha lipoic acid, another quarter receiving 1,200 mg daily, another quarter receiving 1,800 mg daily and the last quarter receiving placebo. The study was conducted for five weeks.

Researchers measured various symptoms including stabbing and burning pain, tingling and numbness in the feet in these patients who suffered with malfunction of the peripheral nerves. The three groups that received alpha lipoic acid, 600 mg to 1,800 mg daily, had an overall reduction in symptoms by about 50% compared to the placebo group, which had a reduction of symptoms of 32%. Results were statistically significant.


Ziegler, D.; Ametov, A.; Barinov, A.; Dyck, P.; Gurieva, I.; Low, P.; et al. Oral Treatment With Alpha-Lipoic Acid Improves Symptomatic Diabetic Polyneuropathy: The SYDNEY 2 trial. Diabetes Care. 2006 29: 2365-2370.

Key concepts: Antioxidant, alpha lipoic acid, diabetes, diabetic neuropathy