The GLA Factsheet
GLA has become increasingly trendy to use in women’s health and skin health supplements. This has led to the assumption that GLA is a supplement for women only. But this is not the case – GLA’s anti-inflammatory effects provide a wide range of benefits for men and women. When men and women consume GLA, it raises the body’s production of two hormone-like compounds called prostaglandin E1 and hydroxyeicosatetraenoic acid. These compounds are responsible for lowering swelling and inflammation seen in a number of health conditions, offering support to skin and heart health while relieving symptoms associated with arthritis and diabetes.
The outer layer of the skin protects and defends our body by working as a barrier. GLA can improve the function of this skin barrier by restoring moisture and smoothness to healthy, dry or damaged skin. GLA not only helps in the maintenance of healthy skin, but it also alleviates inflammation seen in skin conditions such as eczema, dermatitis, psoriasis or itchy skin.
The anti-inflammatory effects of GLA help to reduce pain, inflammation and joint stiffness found in arthritis. Taking GLA supplements can help slow the progression of degenerative joint diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis. GLA is also vital for patients suffering from osteoporosis as it increases calcium absorption and buildup in bones.
Studies show that GLA improves symptoms seen in diabetic neuropathy, a condition causing nerve damage, affecting a high number of diabetic patients. This nerve damage can cause numbness in the patient’s hands or legs, and in severe cases results in amputation. As GLA increases nerve communication and nerve function, it contributes to the prevention and improvement of nerve damage seen in diabetic patients.
The anti-inflammatory effect of GLA may lower plaque formation seen in the arterial walls of our cardiovascular system, lowering risk of heart disease. This omega-6 fatty acid has also been shown to improve cholesterol levels and lower high blood pressure induced by high stress situations.