Researchers have conducted a number of studies on the effect of lipoic acid on diabetic neuropathy. In diabetes, high blood sugar can damage nerves, most often in the hands and feet. People with this nerve damage, called neuropathy, can experience pain and numbness in those areas.
Lipoic acid offers two kinds of support for diabetes. It is a powerful antioxidant and it also activates a switch in the body that causes blood sugar to be used more normally. A 2011 study assessed these past studies and concluded that 600mg lipoic acid per day for as little as 5 weeks significantly improved neuropathy symptoms.