7. Alpha-lipoic acid
- Main uses: Easing nerve pain, lowering blood sugar
- Typical dosage: 600 to 800 milligrams a day
Also known as ALA, alpha-lipoic acid can neutralize many types of free radicals—reactive oxygen atoms that can damage other cells. A build-up of free radicals, caused in part by high blood sugar, can actually lead to nerve damage and other serious issues.
A study published in the Canadian Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology found that ALA helps both in the prevention and in the treatment of diabetes. As a treatment for diabetic neuropathy, says Shane-McWhorter, “ALA may help more with early nerve damage than with more advanced problems.” Other studies have shown a decrease in nerve pain, numbness, and burning.