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Steve Liberati
01-20-2007, 10:33 AM
I was told r-ALA helps mitigate the increase and severity of the insulin spike caused from a high gi starchy carb containing meal. I wanted to know if anyone has any studies on r-ALA with humans and its effect on insulin response. I did a MEDLINE search on PUBMED but only found a few studies done on Zucker (?) rats. I hear the research on r-ALA is promising. Just like to see it for myself.

I had taken r-ALA in the past with cheat meals but not sure whether it really worked. Its not very cheap either.

Any help here is appreciated.

Robert Allison
01-20-2007, 11:18 AM
Hi Steve,

I am not sure this is what you are looking for, but here are a few studies from the PubMed site that look at ALA and glucose metabolism:

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=PubMed&list_uids=7575750&dopt=Abstract

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=pubmed&dopt=Abstract&list_uids=8817248&query_hl=67&itool=pubmed_docsum

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/entrez/query.fcgi?cmd=Retrieve&db=pubmed&dopt=Abstract&list_uids=14984445&query_hl=76&itool=pubmed_docsum

These studies seem to be looking at the therapeutic benefits of ongoing ALA supplementation to enhance glucose metabolism, as opposed to minimizing the insulin spike that might occur from one (carb rich?) meal, but the effect might be the same.

I take ALA regularly and I sometimes also use it in the manner you outlined. I, too, have wondered whether it has the potential to significant blunt a one-time insulin spike.

The Linus Pauling Institute also has some good info on ALA:

http://lpi.oregonstate.edu/infocenter/othernuts/la/

Great question... I hope this helps.

Robert

Mike ODonnell
01-20-2007, 12:29 PM
From that Linus Palding link above...

"Insulin Signaling: The binding of insulin to the insulin receptor (IR) triggers the autophosporylation of several tyrosine residues on the IR. Activation of the IR in this manner stimulates a cascade of protein phosphorylations, resulting in the translocation of glucose transporters (GLUT4) to the cell membrane and increased cellular glucose uptake (3, 33). LA has been found to increase GLUT4 translocation to cell membranes and to increase glucose uptake in cultured adipose (fat) and muscle cells (34, 35). Although LA does not appear to bind to the IR like insulin, it can activate the insulin signaling cascade in cultured cells, possibly by acting as a mild oxidizing agent (3, 33)."

Whether the cost to benefit ratio is worth it.....who knows....most supplements usually aren't

Steve Liberati
01-20-2007, 06:02 PM
Thanks guys...not sure what to make of it. Might try cutting it out for a few weeks and see if I notice any difference. True most of these supps are trial-n-error anyway.

Robb Wolf
01-21-2007, 03:11 PM
Either way I think the ALA is best used as a daily. Use something like cinnamon for a specific meal IMO.