Lithium orotate is a mineral salt that is normally found in small amounts in all living things. Each molecule of lithium orotate
consists of a molecule of orotic acid in which one of the hydrogen atoms is replaced by a lithium atom.
Orotate (orotic acid) is a biochemical substance made by all living cells. It is a necessary raw material for making the genetic
material: RNA and DNA.
Some evidence suggests that lithium may be an essential trace mineral.
Lithium orotate was introduced as a supplement by Dr. Hans Nieper, the innovative German physician, who used it to treat depression,
headaches, migraine, epilepsy, and alcoholism. Nieper considered orotates to be superior to carbonates, chlorides, sulfates,
and other negative-charged ions as bioavailability enhancers for minerals like lithium.
Other lithium salts have been used for more than a century to treat mania. During the first half of the 20th Century, however,
lithium therapy fell out of fashion and was not rediscovered until 1949. Since then, it has become one of the mainstays in the treatment of ‘bipolar disorder’ (the current euphemism for manic-depression).
During the past ten years a number of lab studies have kindled interest in the use of lithium for treating Alzheimer’s and
other neurodegenerative diseases.
What we can’t tell you
In the U.S. and some other industrialized countries, government agencies like the U.S. Food and Drug Administration
have adopted censorship as a method for intensifying their control over the supplement industry and its customers.
Thus, FDA regulations prohibit us from telling you that any of our products are effective as medical treatments,
even if they are, in fact, effective.
Accordingly, we will limit our discussion of Monolith™ to a brief summary of relevant research,
and let you draw your own conclusions about what medical conditions it may be effective in treating.
Lithium and neurodegenerative diseases
In 1997 a groundbreaking paper appeared in the Journal of Biological Chemistry, reporting that lithium interferes with a key
process in the brain that damages nerve cells in Alzheimer’s disease. The researchers stated that “these findings could be
exploited to develop a novel intervention for Alzheimer’s disease.”
More recent studies in cell culture and lab animals have added weight to this prediction and found additional ways in which
lithium protects nerve cells and stimulates the repair of damaged nerve tissue.
In a 2004 review of the subject, D.M. Chuang of the (U.S.) National Institutes of Health wrote: “The neuroprotective and neurotrophic
actions of lithium have profound clinical implications. In addition to its present use in bipolar patients, lithium could
be used to treat acute brain injuries such as stroke and chronic progressive neurodegenerative diseases.” Examples of such diseases are Alzheimer’s, Huntington’s, ALS, Parkinson’s, and other less well-known conditions.
Other possible applications of lithium orotate
Several other applications for lithium supplements have come to light recently:
- treating disruptive behavior disorders in children and adolscents
- preventing episodic impulsive aggressiveness
- protecting the brain from damage by alcohol
- treating kleptomania
- preventing symptoms of Fragile X Syndrome (FXS). (FXS is a genetic flaw that causes certain forms of autism, learning disabilities, anxiety disorders, and mental retardation.)
Furthermore, orotates (even those without lithium) have other useful properties:
- protecting the heart from arrhythmias
- reducing heart-attack damage
- stimulating production of red and white blood cells
- lowering mental stress
- eliminating nerve-damaging deposits of lipofuscin and ceroid pigments.
Dosages and toxicity
Lithium carbonate and lithium citrate (the salts of lithium that have been traditionally used to treat bipolar disorder) have a poor toxicity profile — they show
toxic effects at dosages only a little higher than the medically effective dose. ‘Bipolar’ patients, who usually use high
doses of lithium carbonate (typically above 900 mg/day) must therefore receive professional guidance and testing for side
In contrast, the therapeutic dose of lithium orotate is much lower than that of the other lithium salts. The explanation normally
given for this is that the orotate form of lithium passes through the blood brain barrier far more easily than do the chloride
or citrate forms; therefore much smaller doses of the orotate can be used (150 mg/day or less), resulting in lower, nontoxic
concentrations of lithium throughout rest of the body.
Although the lally-gaggers who control the world’s clinical research programs have yet to conduct a clinical trial of lithium
as a prevention or treatment for Alzheimer’s or for any other neurodegenerative disorder, we needn’t wait for them to get
their act together. Lithium orotate is available as a nutritional supplement.
Are Monolith™ supplements useful for the conditions and purposes mentioned above?
We aren’t allowed to tell you, so you should take a look at some of the references cited here,
and then decide for yourself.