ALC/ALA anecdotal anti-aging effects

Acetyl-l-carnitine and alpha lipoic acid's dual cellular action in the repair of damaged neural pathways produces some remarkable effects. I've got to say this therapy is perhaps the closest one can come to a backwards ride in a time machine.
It is my recollection that I never possessed a very keen sense of smell, so it is hard to know if carnitine and ALA have bestowed me with a sense I was formerly lacking or merely restored a sense I had forgotten I once possessed. Regardless, we have both experienced acute moments of deja vu when particular odors call up scenes from our early childhoods. Newly mowed grass is no longer a singular odor, but a highly
individualized collection of fragrances, plants from the mint families, clover blossoms and a myriad of different grasses. While cleaning leaves out of the spring, I was mentally transported by a distinct smell of pond water and frogs (previously imperceptible) to a lake where I swam as a kid. Hubby had a similar "carnitine moment" when the combined smells of fried onions and diesel fuel from a mall parking garage recreated a street scene in the large east coast city where we lived over 3 decades ago. To say that these sensory stimuli reminded us of our past histories is inadequate; transporting us to a place in time is nearer the mark. ALC/ALA and Anosmia

Over and above the capacity for smell is a sense at times of actually feeling fresh air contacting the walls of our lungs. Presumably this tactile sensation is the result of repairs to lung tissue. The phrase 'drinking in the wind' comes to mind. It is a sensation not experienced since teenaged and very early adult years, a sense of oxygen filling the chest cavity and infusing one's entire body with energy and optimism. A fresh breeze through the window or blowing over the land will unpredictably set off this physiological chain reaction.

And another word about wind currents. We are suddenly able to discern the most minute thermal changes within each breeze. Another person related passing by a refrigerated case in a supermarket and getting goose bumps from the chill, a sensation that had been absent for years.

Another curiousity of ALC/ALA therapy is enhanced color vision, as if someone turned up the contrast on the world. Roadside items (flowers, signs) seem so bright as to almost leap up from the landscape.

Perhaps the most oft alluded to theme among ALC/ALA users is a general sense of well-being.

With the upside comes the downside to anti-aging. A youthful body is somewhat high maintenance. Accelerated hair and nail growth can be a nuisance to keep up with and increased skin oil necessitates more frequent face washing. All those regenerated nerve endings just love to promote itching. Any irritation will trigger the alarm: dry skin, mosquito bites, a tag on a piece of clothing, and increased sloughing off of skin cells from rapid cell growth. Any minor skin allergy is now amplified. Years of manual labor spent cultivating protective callouses on my hands have come to naught. My damaged pain receptors have annoyingly sprung back to life and no longer can I pull hot pans from the oven or extract splinters from my hands without wincing.

A couple other negative effects are most likely attributable to an optimized metabolism. These are increased sensitivity to caffeine and attacks of low blood sugar if one goes too long without eating. ALC/ALA also amplifies the effects of alcohol.

Because ALC/ALA stimulates cerebral cortex activity, it is better to arrange your doses to not fall too close to bedtime. Some people have reported vivid dreams, but for myself it leads to a restless sleep waking up continuously with my mind racing. During waking hours this mental energy is not disruptive and apparently finds a channel in the day's activities.

The only possibly serious ill effect I can report was my reaction to an MAOI (antidepressant medication) that I have taken uneventfully for decades. This medication is seldom prescribed anymore due to its reputation for causing sudden hypertensive episodes in patients, particularly when combined with any of a long list of other drugs and foods. I had not ingested any of these forbidden substances when my blood pressure spiked without warning. Could the ALC/ALA have had a hand? Could it have sensitized me to the MAOI? At present this is under investigation.

An unexpected upside to the antidepressant dilemma emerged. My doctor's advice was to change from a single daily dose of the AD (antidepressant) to 2 doses split 6 hours apart, and to keep a blood pressure med on hand for injecting IM in another emergency. I was also toying with the idea of switching to a safer AD medication. In the meantime I cut the MAOI dose by 2/3rds as a temporary measure expecting fully for depressive symptoms to re-emerge. Several weeks have now passed. So has the ALC/ALA taken over the job of the MAOI? Too early and too little information to call, but research supports ALC/ALA's function as an anti-depressant.
Pets and ALC/ALA

Because animals were, after all, first to test ALC/ALA, it seems fair play that they should share in the benefits of the research they pioneered. These compounds are increasingly appearing as ingredients in pet foods and vitamins formulated for senior animals.

I am giving ALC/ALA to two of our older pets in the hopes it will slow the death of kidney cells and thus delay the onset or worsening of chronic renal failure associated with old age. (See page about ALC/ALA's impact on the health of major organs here. )

Our 10 year old overweight 35 lb sheltie dog gets 400mg ALC/160mg ALA per day hidden inside cheese balls with his breakfast. It's difficult to tell but it seems that his energy level has taken an upswing.

With geriatric cats a point of key importance is that they maintain their appetite. Serious health consequences and death can occur if they go off their food. So for a time it looked like our 20 year old cat would have to be denied the benefits of ALC/ALA therapy. She refused any food containing even the smallest amount of the supplement, and popping pills down her throat (perhaps because of the acidic nature of the ALA) caused her to lose her appetite.

However I circumvented the problem by mixing powdered ALC/ALA into hand creme and applying it to her ears. This transdermal method of application has had a very noticable effect on old kitty's cognitive abilities. Prior to treatment, she often wandered aimlessly in the disoriented manner typical of an Alzheimer's patient. Now her steps have regained deliberate purpose and recognition has returned to her gaze as she seeks us out looking for attention. Not doing so bad for the feline equivilent of a 97 year old lady!
A few random excerpts from personal observations recorded by Russell Mills, science writer, age 60:

"I noticed several types of improvements, most of them so striking that I feel confident attributing them to the regimen.

I noticed a marked decline in my sensitivity to cold temperatures. My whole body felt a bit warmer than usual, as if my metabolism had been revved up, but the effect on my hands was dramatic. Normally when I walk outside in cool weather with my hands exposed, my fingers quickly become numb and discolored (with purple and white patches), and require dousing with warm water in order to recover, whereupon they turn bright red. (This is called Raynaud's Syndrome, I think). Before starting the regimen I was having two or more such experiences every day. During my four weeks on the regimen, I had only two such incidents, and they were mild ones, despite the weather having turned colder."

"Generally speaking, from the end of the first week my body began to feel more lithe and responsive. By lithe I don't mean limber, rather I mean that physical movement had become more pleasurable. For example, if I were walking uphill, each muscle that was being used seemed to be asking to be used again instead of protesting at the exertion."

"Nerve damage recovery: I sometimes wake up with numbness in parts of one or both hands, apparently from sleeping in a bad position. It generally goes away in a few minutes ó except once, about three years ago, when a severe numbness in the outer two fingers of my left hand didnít go away. It remained for the next two-and-a-half years, making typing awkward and piano-playing impossible. It was only after I began using ALA+ALC that the numbness has gradually diminished, until it now seems like the fingers are about 90% back to normal. "

Read the full text detailing Russell Mills' unofficial trial of ALC/ALA:

Recurring themes among the guys below are the return of spontaneous and nocturnal erections, ramped up libido, and pronounced increase in ejaculate volume. Gains were made quickly and at a lower dose by younger men and those with a lesser degree of sexual impairment. While older men with longstanding and severe ED required much larger doses and many months of treatment for the repairs to take hold, the results are all the more spectacular for being restored from complete, or nearly complete, shutdown to sexual functionality.

In addition to sexual benefits, many of these men also noted neurological regenerative effects the same or similar to those described above.

Response to Treatment: Positive
Age: 50
Cause: Spinal Injury
Daily Dose: 5 grams ALC plus time-release ALA
Response to Treatment: Positive
Age: 34
Cause: Unknown (overweight)
Daily Dose: 3 grams ALC plus 1200mg ALA
Response to Treatment: Positive
Age: 50s
Cause: Diabetes
Daily Dose: 3 grams ALC plus 1200mg ALA
raised dose to 5gmALC/2gmALA
Response to Treatment: Negative
Age: 79
Cause: Probably side effects of Med:
Cardura (an alpha blocker) for BPH
Daily Dose: 4 grams ALC plus 1500 mg ALA (daily)
Response to Treatment: Positive
Age: early 40s
Cause: Andropause/low T
Daily Dose: 1 gram ALC/ 400 mg ALA
Response to Treatment: Positive
(Father of CH #5)
Age: 81
Cause: Unknown (age related?)
Daily Dose: 3 grams ALC/ unknown ALA
Response to Treatment: Positive
Age: 43
Cause: Unknown
Daily Dose: 4000mg ALC/1600mg ALA
Response to Treatment: Positive
Age: 54
Cause: Unknown
Daily Dose: unknown dose ALA and 1 gram RALA
Response to Treatment: Positive
Age: (young)
Cause: Unknown cause (Low T)
Daily Dose: 4000mg alc and 2400 mg ala
Response to Treatment: Positive
Age: 20+ years
Cause: Spinal cord injury
Daily Dose: 3grams ALC and 400mg ALA and 200mg RALA
Response to Treatment: Positive
Age: Unknown
Cause: Unknown
Daily Dose: Unknown
Response to Treatment: Positive
Age: 60
Cause: pre-diabetic syndrome
Daily Dose: 5gramsALC/2gramsALA