Lipoic acid has been reported to be an effective antioxidant. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of Lipoic acid supplementation on markers of free radical stress prior to and following exhaustive exercise in rats. Rats were fed Lipoic acid for 8 weeks. Blood and tissue concentrations of Lipoic acid and glutathione were determined prior to and following exercise and compared to controls. Results revealed that Lipoic acid supplementation increased gastrocnemius Lipoic acid levels and total glutathione levels in blood and the liver. Additionally, the exercise-induced decrease in heart glutathione activity was prevented by Lipoic acid supplementation. Lipoic acid supplementation protected against oxidative lipid damage in the heart, liver, and gastrocnemius. The authors concluded that Lipoic acid supplementation also enhanced tissue defenses and counteracted exercise-induced cell damage.
Journal of Applied Physiology. 86:1191-1196, 1999.