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ALCAR/ALA - how and when?

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Posted 16 January 2007 - 12:24 AM

I have recently started taking ALCAR and ALA with noticeable positive benefits to my energy levels and my ability to concentrate. I am currently taking 500mg of ALCAR and 200mg of ALA together twice a day about 1 hour before breakfast and 1 hour before lunch. Is this reasonable? What is the optimal way to take these two supplements to maximize absorption and benefits? What is the ideal ration of ALA to ALCAR? Thanks in advance for any info!

#2 EmbraceUnity

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Posted 27 January 2007 - 10:22 PM

A lot of people on these forums take around that much, or even a bit more. I just started with the stuff, but I must say, it has noticeably elevated my mood and energy too! I take it with a good amount of green tea, and it is just what the doctor ordered... so to speak.

One thing I would suggest would be to look into R-lipoic Acid instead, since there are conflicting studies about the efficacy and even dangers of S-lipoic acid. S-lipoic acid is the other component to regular ALA.

There are special versions of both these supplements available at LEF, which are supposedly much better absorbed by the body. I have not tried them, but many people recommend them. If I decide to become serious about supplements I will definitely become an LEF member. The money is the only issue really.

Optimized ALCAR

R-Dihydro-Lipoic Acid
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#3 dachshund

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Posted 09 November 2007 - 04:54 AM

I have done a little home experimenting & noticed that while Na-RALA is fully soluble in water, upon the addition of ALCAR the solution to become milky white. I suspect that Na-RALA reacts with the ALCAR (properly, Acetyl-L-carnitine hydrogen chloride) to form sodium chloride and an insoluble material, perhaps acetyl-L-carnitine hydrogen R-lipoate. ALCAR is fully soluble in water by itself.

I take my Na-RALA dissolved in water about 30 minutes before consuming ALCAR, to mitigate the possibility of diminished Na-RALA bioavailability from reaction with weak conjugate acids like ALCAR. However, this makes me wonder about what happens to Na-RALA in the acidic stomach environment. My concern would be that Na-RALA is protonated in the stomach to H-RALA and that it spontaneously polymerizes.

Has anyone looked into this possibility or have information from published sources on the Na-RALA/ALCAR compatibility, or the stability of Na-RALA in the acidic stomach environment? I contacted Karyn Young at Geronova and she told me that they had not looked into this. Superior Nutraceuticals offers an ALCAR/Na-RALA capsule combo. I wonder if they have they looked into the chemical compatibility of these two supplements? I like Superior Nutraceuticals for their products and purchase Na-RALA, Ascorbate salts and EGCG powders from them.

I would be interested to get input on the Geronova NaRALA product and experiences with it from the ImmInst.org community. Does it really overcome the inherent instability problems of R-ALA in the acidic environment of the stomach, or is one better served by consuming a weak base like sodium bicabonate with the Na-RALA to retain its salt nature in the stomach.

Thanks for your responses!

#4 niner

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Posted 10 November 2007 - 05:08 AM

In the stomach, it would seem to me that your concern about Na-RALA being protonated is likely. Don't bother with the bicarbonate; you'll never raise stomach pH enough, and you wouldn't want to if you could. As to it polymerizing, I suspect that is more of a shelf life issue, and probably not an issue in the stomach. Personally, I prefer to use a sustained release form of RALA or ALA, because the half life of lipoic acid in the body is only about 25 minutes. If I'm going to have ALCAR on board cranking up my mitochondria, I'd like to be sure that I have a good antioxidant around for the duration. I don't know if plain lipoic acid partitions into the mitochondrion and stays there for a long time or not, so I feel safer with the sustained release form. I like AOR's sustained release RALA, but it's pretty expensive. Source Naturals has one that's a lot cheaper. Unique Nutrition had AOR's on deep discount recently, so I bought 5 bottles.

#5 dachshund

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Posted 10 November 2007 - 05:07 PM

Thanks Niner for your input! Do you believe that 300 mg RLA provided in two SR capsules is adequate for anti-aging in combination with ALCAR? The 150 mg capsule dose seems pretty standard from AOR, Geronova & SN. As you mentioned these products are spendy and once you start taking more than two a day it gets really expensive.

Also, Superior Nutraceuticals has notified me that they will follow-up with Karyn Young at Geronova to get feedback on my question from the experts. If you would like to follow that dicussion you can see it at the Superior Nutraceuticals community forum, http://www.superiorn...orums/index.php.

Thanks and take care!

#6 theta

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Posted 11 November 2007 - 07:12 AM

I guess RALA could polymerize when catalyzed by a strong acid.
Forming a polythioester? The present of a large excess of water
would likely reduce that polymerization. Since an esterification
reaction produces water as byproduct a large excess of water
would shift the equilibrium to no esterification. Plus I think a certain amount of heat might be needed that the body would not supply to drive the reaction. Though the fact RALA is not very soluble in water might make that protection less than ideal. I wonder if RALA is very
soluble in other consumable solvents like ethanol or glycerin? They
would likely interfere with RALA self-polymerization. Seems esterifing
RALA with ethanol in the first place would make it for less likely to
polymerize in the stomach. Though who knows if it would be safe and effective? Also its possible digestive enzymes could break down a short RALA polymer anyway since esterification reactions are reversible.

#7 kakker

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Posted 26 May 2010 - 01:13 PM

After drastically cutting back my supplement regimen in the fall, I recently reintroduced r-lipoic acid (200 mg) and ALCAR (500 mg). I've come across a few reports on the net (which I take with a grain of salt because they don't seem to be well documemented) that it may be necessary to take extra biotin and other b vitamins (e.g., thiamin) when supplementing with r-lipoic acid and ALCAR. Is there any good evidence in humans to substantiate these claims? I've tried doing multiple pubmed searches, but I can't seem to find much of anything on the topic. I have some degree of expertise in statistics and research design, but I am a rank amateur in the area of biochemistry, so I doubt I could properly evaluate the content of a study in this area anyway. (Or at least not without a reasonably high degree of error!) :)

Edited by kakker, 26 May 2010 - 01:15 PM.

#8 albedo

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Posted 27 December 2011 - 07:58 PM

Using LEF's ALC and R-ALA but disappointed I could not find human trials on R-ALA. I trust however both B Ames's works (see the Juvenon) and LEF recommendation. Can report (subjective) increased mental energy (e.g. able to work late night if necessary without much effort) and probably more physical energy/endurance during exercise.

#9 albedo

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Posted 27 December 2011 - 08:38 PM

Add on ...

Taking both in the morning and 2x ALC during the day, preferably on empty stomach

#10 longevitynow

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Posted 30 December 2011 - 04:48 AM

I take ALA and ALCAR every morning as an anti-aging support. Can't say I notice much. But if I remember my afternoon/evening dose I have more energy in the evening,such that I shouldn't take them too close to bed. Most often on empty stomach, but sometimes after a meal. As an amino acid, am I reducing effectiveness of the ALCAR by taking it with food/protein?

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#11 stablemind

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Posted 19 November 2012 - 06:53 PM

Has anyone noticed combined synergy of ALA and ALCAR that produces effects greater than either alone?

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