GLA: Fit for a King?

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  • Cure in a Seed

    Cure in a Seed

    Gamma linolenic acid (GLA) is a fatty acid with history. Most commonly found in the seeds of the evening primrose, it’s been used for centuries in homeopathic remedies and folk cures. Native Americans used it to reduce swelling. By the time it made its way to Europe, it was being used it to treat almost everything, eventually being nicknamed the “king’s cure-all.” Read on to learn more about this essential fatty acid that can help to improve your health and wellness.

  • What Is GLA?

    What Is GLA?

    GLA is an omega-6 fatty acid that your body can’t produce, but is readily available in tons of vegetable-based oils. Along with evening primrose oil, you can find it in borrage seed oil and blackcurrant seed oil capsules at most health food stores. However, most diets contain enough that you don’t need a supplement. It’s essential to maintaining brain function and stimulating skin and hair growth, maintaining skeletal and reproductive health, and regulating your metabolism.

  • Diabetic Neuropathy

    Diabetic Neuropathy

    If you suffer from diabetic neuropathy, a common side effect among people with diabetes, there’s some good news: some studies show that you can keep the numbness and tingling associated with this problem at bay. Patients with good sugar control tend to experience more relief than those who have poor sugar control, so consult with your endocrinologist before you add this to your treatment.

  • Arthritis

    Arthritis

    It turns out the ancient healers were on to something: GLA can help to decrease inflammation. Some studies show that it can improve your symptoms and functionality, and that the risk of side effects is low. If you suffer from arthritis, talk to your doctor about adding a supplement to your diet to help manage your symptoms.

  • PMS and Menstrual Cramps

    PMS and Menstrual Cramps

    Many women and girls use GLA supplements to treat period symptoms and alleviate pain. There’s no conclusive scientific evidence that this works, but if you feel like it’s an effective way to manage your pain, most doctors say that it’s safe to pop up to 3,000 milligrams per day.

  • Are There Side Effects?

    Are There Side Effects?

    GLA has a host of possible side effects and drug interactions, so don’t add it to your day without asking your doctor if it’s safe. It’s not for people with seizure disorders. You should avoid taking a supplement of GLA if you’re going to have surgery soon or if you are pregnant. Its side effects are usually mild, and include symptoms like periodic headaches, loose stools, and nausea.

  • Try Natural First

    Try Natural First

    Like any supplement, GLA has the potential to improve your health and overall well being, but it doesn’t come without risks and it isn’t a replacement for a good diet and exercise. Ask your doctor if GLA could be a good addition to your treatment plan, and stick to the dosage guidelines that your physician prescribes.

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