The effects of alpha lipoid acid (ALA) on plasma lipids remains unclear due to contradictory results obtained in clinical trials. To clarify the effects of ALA, this meta-analysis includes 12 randomized and controlled trials assessing the effects of ALA on lipid profile.
Results show that ALA reduces total cholesterol level in comparison to controls (Weight mean difference = -10.18 mg/dL, 95% CI: -16.16, -4.20 mg/dL, p = 0.001). A significant reduction in LDL-cholesterol has also been measured (WMD = -9.22 mg/dL, 95% CI: -18.28, -0.16 mg/dL, p = 0.001). However, no change in HDL-cholesterol has been measured. Regarding triglycerides, the analysis show no significant effect of ALA on triglycerides, except in a subgroup analysis based in health status (diabetic vs. diabetic) in which triglycerides were reduced in both populations.
Therefore, ALA reduce plasma lipids. However, the consequences of these changes has to be clarified, notably regarding cardiovascular diseases.
Haghighatdoost F, Hariri M. Does alpha-lipoic acid affect lipid profile? A meta-analysis and systematic review on randomized controlled trials. Eur J Pharmacol. 2019 Jan 8. pii: S0014-2999(19)30009-3.