What is Oxaloacetate?
Oxaloacetate is an organic compound that has been getting a lot of press over the last few years. Also known as Oxaloacetic acid, this compound which plays a number of key roles in the body has been the subject of an increasing body of research.
Many of the studies to date have focused on the neural protection benefits and anti-aging potential of the compound. Studies have even demonstrated that oxaloacetate can reduce brain damage caused by ischemic attacks.
There is increasingly compelling evidence that oxaloacetate might have neuroprotective actions in the brain. According to studies, it seems to protect the brains neurons against neurotoxicity while simultaneously helping to reduce inflammation in the brain.
As well as its protective effects on the brain, there is also evidence which indicates it could significantly extend a person’s lifespan.
If you are interested in finding out more about oxaloacetate and its truly remarkable potential, please read on.
The Health Benefits of Oxaloacetate
Clinical research has demonstrated that the use of oxaloacetate is linked to a number of benefits while animal studies have also proved encouraging. At the top of that list is the ability of oxaloacetate to preserve brain health and protect against neurotoxicity. Studies also indicate that it can help the brain recover from injury because it stimulated the production of new mitochondria.
1) Brain Health and Protection
The ability of oxaloacetate to protect the brain is primarily due to the way it can scavenge glutamate in the blood. As well as its neuroprotective abilities, it can actually enhance recovery following a strike or brain trauma from injury.
The following lost represents the potential applications of oxaloacetate based on the research to date.
- It prevents neurotoxicity also known as glutamatergic excitotoxicity.
- It can protect the brain from damage by insecticides.
- Protects the mitochondria in the brain.
- Speeds up recovery and lessens brain damage after a stroke or injury.
- May help to prevent an ischemic attack.
2) Life Extension and Anti-Aging
The search for the secret to longevity is genuinely exciting. Even if it slightly too late for me, I am fascinated by the idea that my children and grandchildren could live a much longer life than we can conceive of at the moment.
One of the most promising avenues of research is calorie restriction. Studies on animals have demonstrated that restricting calorific intake can significantly increase an animal’s lifespan. But that is not the only benefit of strict calorie control. Studies also show that limiting calories also improves various other aspects of health when compared to people who overindulge.
So what does this have to do with oxaloacetate?
Studies appear to suggest that oxaloacetate offsets various biomarkers that are associated with the aging process.
One study published in 2009, set out to determine if supplementing with citric acid metabolites might mimic the increase in longevity seen with calorie restriction. To do this, the researchers gave oxaloacetate to a nematode called Caenorhabditis elegans. According to the results, supplementing with oxaloacetate significantly increased longevity. (1)
Whether or not this increase in lifespan would be seen in other animals let alone humans is uncertain. However, the early signs are certainly promising and there are also anecdotal claims to suggest that the lifespans of mice have been increased through oxaloacetate supplementation.
3) Blood Sugar Control
One of the very first published experiments done with oxaloacetate was conducted in Japan way back in 1968. The researchers learned that a plant called Euonymous alatus also known as burning bush had the effect of reducing the blood sugar level of mice. The researchers then isolated the compound responsible for lowering the blood sugar and found that it was oxaloacetate.
After isolating the compound, the researchers went on to create a sodium based oxaloacetic acid called OAA-sodium which they tested on animals. The researchers found that it reduced blood sugar levels significantly in diabetic and healthy animals.
Researchers then went on to give the same treatment to 21 humans with either Type 1 or Type 11 diabetes. Treatment with OOA-sodium reduced blood glucose in all ten patients with the Type 1 form of diabetes and 6 of the 11 with Type 11 diabetes. This clinical trial also determined that there was a minimal risk of any adverse side effects.
4) Cancer Prevention
Although we are still scratching the surface with regard to the potential of oxaloacetate, the studies done to date have been extremely positive. This is certainly the case when it comes to its potential as an anticancer or antitumor agent.
In one study published in 2012, the research team implanted the brains of rats with gliomas and then treated them with oxaloacetate. The researchers found that administering the treatment reduced bot the size of the tumors and their invasiveness.
When oxaloacetate was used in conjunction with Temozolomide – an antitumor medication, excellent synergistic results occurred and survival rates of the animals increased above 200%. (3)
Other studies have demonstrated that by reducing levels of glutamine, you can put a stop to the growth of cancer cells. We know from research that oxaloacetate can reduce glutamine and inhibit the growth of cancer cells in animals. (4)
Yet another study into the effectiveness of oxaloacetate indicates that it can help make radiation and chemotherapy treatments more effective. (5)
5) Boosts Energy and Endurance
Another potential application of oxaloacetate is to give you a boost of energy or even to improve your stamina and endurance performance. You do not need to be an athlete to benefit from a boost in energy. Whether you are spending a long day on your feet or simply doing your household chores, an increase in energy can certainly help.
One study conducted on rats found that treatment with oxaloacetate may help to increase both energy and levels of endurance. (6) According to experts, it has this effect because it helps to activate more mitochondria which in turn increases energy production.
6) Heart Health
The potential benefits of oxaloacetate when it comes to heart health is linked to its general longevity and anti-aging effects.
Studies done on animals have demonstrated that by having an effect similar to a limited calorie diet, it may also reduce the potential of heart disease. Researchers believe that it has this effect by increasing NAD+ levels which stimulate the production of certain proteins that can significantly reduce a person’s risk of getting a heart disease. (7)
How to Take Oxaloacetate
The levels of oxaloacetate found in food is way too low to make much of a difference to your health. For this reason, a supplement may be the best option for you.
It is available in capsule form from many health stores or online. No maximum recommended dose has been determined and studies have found that even at relatively high doses, there were no serious side effects.
For general health purposes and anti-aging, a relatively low dose of about 100 mg a day is typically recommended.
For more serious illnesses like cancer or brain trauma, a much higher dose can be taken. Studies have used doses as high as 1000 mg a day during cancer treatment or immediately following a brain injury.
Please be aware that there are no firm recommended doses of oxaloacetate, so make sure that you speak to your doctor before using it. This is even more important if you are pregnant, nursing or have an underlying medical condition of some kind.