As a dietary element, it is integrated into the body by ingestion of animal proteins or by production in the body, reaching tissues through the circulation.
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Origin of L-carnitine
L-carnitine also called (carnis) which means meat, comes from Latin and was discovered in 1905 by Russian scientists Gulitsch & Krimberg in meat, the muscles of mammals, demonstrating that this element was essential for the functioning of biochemistry. of the muscle cells.
What is L-Carnitine?
It is a very small water soluble molecule that interferes with the natural process of generating heat by triggering an increase in temperature, which will later cause » fat burning and fat reduction.
L-carnitine is a derivative (amino acid) that can be produced in our body or obtained by eating meat. Furthermore, it is available in the form of a nutritional supplement.
L-carnitine is a carrier of fatty acids in the cellular mitochondria, responsible for the production of cellular energy, but it is also the place where these fatty acids are converted into energy.
Many companies currently have L-carnitine supplements on the market, but not all of them are reliable, as the isolation process is expensive.
For this reason, we will find products on the market that, without mentioning on the label, may contain a mixture of the “L” shape and the “D” shape, which will obviously influence the final price, but also the results and In the health.
Types of L-carnitine
It is important to note that there are two forms of carnitine: L-carnitine and D-carnitine. Both “Carnitine” are produced during the “ L-carnitine ” synthesis process , but only the “L” form is biologically active.
L-carnitine is the standard biologically active form of carnitine, found in the human body, in foods, and in most supplements. We must remember, however, that there are several types of carnitine:
- L-Carnitine-Acetyl – Often called ALCAR or ALC, acetyl-L-carnitine is perhaps the most effective form of carnitine for our brain. It can also be used to treat neurological disorders such as Alzheimer’s disease.
- L-carnitine tartrate – This is one of the most common forms found in sports supplements, due to the speed with its high absorption, (the substance is quickly absorbed into the body).This type of carnitine (tartar) may be helpful in terms of factors associated with exercise, such as muscle inflammation and soreness, and muscle recovery after physical exertion.
- L-carnitine fumarate – It is an amino acid synthesized at the level of all cells, which is found in some nutritional supplements.
- D-carnitine – This inactivated form can cause a deficiency of carnitine in the human body, by inhibiting the absorption of other, much more useful forms at the cellular level.For most people, acetyl-L-carnitine and l-carnitine appear to be the most effective for general use. However, you should always choose the form of carnitine that is best for your personal needs and to achieve your goals.
The role of l-carnitine in the body
- The main role of l-carnitine in the body has to do with mitochondrial function and energy production in cells. In cells, l-carnitine helps transport fatty acids into the mitochondria, where they can be “burned” or consumed for energy.
- Approximately 98% of the body’s midnight l-carnitine is found in our muscles, along with small amounts found in the liver and blood.
- For general health, mitochondrial functions can help increase the development of unhealthy mitochondria, which plays an essential role in disease and aging in a healthy way.
- Elimination of short and medium chain fatty acids from mitochondria On the other hand, carnitine plays an important role in the elimination of mitochondria-related short and medium chain fatty acids.
- You have to understand is that the main role of l-carnitine is the transport of fatty acids in the cells to be processed, or “burned” in the mitochondria, to produce energy.
How and when l-carnitine is administered
Your l-carnitine levels are influenced by how much you eat and how much energy your body produces. Therefore, it would be a wise decision for vegetarians and vegans to take, of course, on the doctor’s recommendation. The doctor will explain in detail how and when l-carnitine is administered, depending on the needs of each person.
You can get small amounts in your diet from eating meat and fish, nutritionists say. The main food sources of l-carnitine are meat, fish, and other animal products, such as milk. A healthy individual can also produce sufficient amounts of l-carnitine in their body.
Vegetable foods that contain l-carnitine
Although there are a number of plant-based foods (such as avocado, asparagus, baked bread, whole wheat) that contain l-carnitine, amounts, and these are often up to tens or hundreds of times lower than the amounts that are found in foods of animal origin.
Foods of animal origin that contain l-carnitine
The best Food Sources of l-carnitine include:
- ground beef: 81 mg for an 85-gram serving
- pork: 24 mg in an 85-gram serving;
- fish meat: 5 mg in an 85-gram serving
- chicken meat: 3 mg per 85-gram serving
- milk: 8 mg for an 227 ml serving
- cheddar cheese, Interesting to note is the fact that food sources of l-carnitine have, in fact, the absorption rate much higher than supplies.
Dietary supplements with l-carnitine
According to one study, 14% is absorbed when the substance is administered as a supplement. It is good that your body has the ability to produce l-Carnitine naturally from the amino acids methionine and lysine, in the event that the reserves are too low at the moment. For these reasons, l-Carnitine supplementation should be taken only in special cases, for example, if you use l-Carnitine to treat an illness or medical condition.
Specialists say that older people would benefit from l-carnitine supplements. Research shows that l-carnitine levels tend to spike as a person ages.
In one study, 2 grams of l-carnitine reduced fatigue and stimulated muscular system function in older people. Other research shows that acetyl-L-carnitine may also be helpful, contributing to brain health and brain function as you age.
Diseases or treatments
Specialists also say that the risk of L-Carnitine Deficiency is higher in people suffering from diseases such as cirrhosis and kidney disease.
Therefore, a supplement with l-carnitine could be beneficial for patients with cirrhosis or those with kidney disease. Also, for medical or genetic reasons, some patients may produce too little l-carnitine in the body and therefore a deficiency results.
Primary systemic carnitine deficiency can occur when the protein that is responsible for bringing carnitine into cells undergoes genetic modification. This deficiency causes problems with food processing.
Additionally, this rare condition can lead to:
- low plasma carnitine values;
- progressive cardiomyopathy or a condition of the heart muscle (myocardium));
- skeletal muscle myopathy;
- Polo hypoglucose;
- weak hip muscles, weak muscles in the shoulder area, upper arms, legs, neck, and jaw.
If left untreated, it is fatal. Symptoms will gradually worsen from childhood to early adulthood.
If carnitine deficiency occurs as a result of other metabolic diseases, this is a secondary carnitine deficiency. Cancer and aging reduce carnitine levels in the body.
People who have an unbalanced diet or lack animal products may need to take l-carnitine supplements or may need to eat certain carnitine-enriched foods.
Correct administration of l-carnitine
Sometimes it is not necessary to eat foods rich in carnitine or take supplements based on l-carnitine because the liver and kidneys produce enough carnitine for our body.
However, there are people who produce very little carnitine in the body. In your case, your doctor may recommend supplements with l-carnitine.
Recommended daily dose of l-carnitine
The standard dose of l-carnitine is 500 mg per day. Although the recommended dosage varies from study to study, there is a discussion regarding usage and dosage for each form of carnitine:
- Acetyl-L-carnitine: Doses for this form range from 600 to 2,500 mg per day.
- L-carnitine tartrate: Doses for this form range from 1000 aieu mg per day.
- propionyl-L-carnitine: Doses for this form range from 400 to 1000 mg per day.
Based on an analysis of research in the field, up to 2,000 mg (or 2 grams) per day appears to be a safe amount for long-term use and is an effective dose for most forms of l-carnitine.
Thyroid hormones also interact with l-carnitine. L-carnitine seems to reduce the way thyroid hormones work in the human body, and if you consider it essential at the same time as a thyroid hormone-based treatment, it could decrease its effectiveness.
The importance of l-carnitine for the body
L-carnitine is an important amino acid, which is often used as a weight loss supplement. It has, however, other benefits for the human body, in addition to helping to burn fat.
Benefits of L-Carnitine
In theory, using l-carnitine as a weight loss supplement makes sense as it aids in the transport of more fatty acids into the cells to be “burned” and converted into energy, but it has many other benefits as well. to burn fat in the body.
The role of l-carnitine in burning fat in the body
L-Carnitine is very important for the body because it plays a crucial role in energy production by transporting fatty acids to the cells, that is, the mitochondria. Mitochondria are in charge of “burning” these fatty acids (entr), to create energy that can be used by our bodies.
Regulation of blood pressure
Some studies have shown that l-carnitine has potential benefits for the heart. Therefore, it is beneficial for the reduction of blood pressure and the inflammatory processes associated with heart disease. In one study, participants took 2 grams of acetyl-L-carnitine per day. It lowered their systolic blood pressure, an important indicator of heart health and disease risk, by almost 10 points.
Strengthening of the immune system
Acetyl-L-carnitine, say foreign experts,which improves immune function. It is well known that acetyl-L-carnitine can improve the function of the immune system by stimulating the ability of macrophages (immune system cells, the role of important, which are derived from certain white blood cells).
To function as phagocytes (cells in the blood that defend the body from infection, digest and foreign elements that have entered it).
Cholesterol reduction and triglyceride freedom
A study published in 2009 in “the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition” examined the effects of l-carnitine supplements on oxidized low-density lipoprotein (or LDL-cholesterol oxidation) in patients with diabetes.
The participants were divided into two groups, and the results showed that the ionetics treated with l-carnitine had reduced levels of oxidized LDL cholesterol. Also, triglyceride levels have dropped. This study suggests that l-carnitine may keep cholesterol levels in check.
The role of l-carnitine in the growth of bone density
L-carnitine supplementation in the diet improves bone mineral density, an animal study shows. Results of the August 2008 study show that carnitine supplementation slows bone density loss and improves microstructural properties.
Researchers have also found that l-carnitine can influence bone density and reduce the rate of bone turnover in laboratory mice, leading to a difference in osteoporosis treatment.
Increased resistance to pain and exertion
Carnitine is used by many athletes and gym enthusiasts, and it is also available as supplements. One reason that convinces many of us to use l-carnitine is that it improves exercise performance in healthy people through different mechanisms.
Other reasons to supplement with l-carnitine have to do with the fact that it increases resistance to pain and exertion, to change the way the body responds to physical training, to change the resistance of muscles to fatigue, improves tolerance to physical activity, increases the resistance of the respiratory muscles.
Fights male infertility by increasing semen qualityL-carnitine also has benefits in treating sexual dysfunction, experts say.
Two forms of carnitine (propionyl-L-carnitine and acetyl-l-carnitine) improved the effectiveness of the drug viagra in terms of restoring sexual potency.
Studies on infertility in men have suggested that 2 to 3 grams per day of carnitine for 3 to 4 months may increase sperm quality and that 2 grams per day taken for 2 months may increase sperm motility. But we should note that other studies have not confirmed this, so opinions are divided.
Contribution of l-carnitine in the treatment of cardiovascular diseases.
A 12-month study showed a reduction in cases of heart failure and death among participants who took l-carnitine supplements.
Improved mental state and cognitive decline
L-carnitine may also have benefits in terms of brain function. Some animal studies suggest that acetyl-l-carnitine (ALCAR) may help prevent age-related cognitive decline and improve markers of learning.
In human studies, daily administration of acetyl-l-carnitine has helped improve brain function in those with Alzheimer’s disease and other diseases that affect the brain.
Contribution to the treatment of severe kidney disease
For severe kidney disease, experts have found that l-carnitine may have benefits.
American authorities have approved L-carnitine for the treatment and prevention of l-carnitine deficiency among patients with severe kidney disease, who undergo hemodialysis.
Improved liver function
L-carnitine supplements improve liver function in those suffering from hepatic steatosis (fatty liver disease).
Italian researchers found in 2010 that l-carnitine supplements can improve liver function, liver histology, and other manifestations of non-alcoholic steatosis of the liver (NASH). L-carnitine supplementation induces regression of nonalcohepatitis (NASH) even when plasma and liver carnitine levels appear to be normal, the 2010 study showed.
Adverse reactions of the administration of l-carnitine
Although experts from across the country at the National Institutes of Health (NIH) say of the quality of therapy, l-carnitine is “generally safe and well tolerated,” l-carnitine supplements may cause some side effects. when they exceed the dose recommended by the specialist.
My name is Ellie Lauderdale, MD and I am USA based professional Nutritionist .
I am a Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and board certified specialist in sports dietetics who is trained in integrative medicine. I have worked with hundreds of clients, from those suffering with chronic disease to professional and olympian athletes. My goal is to help optimize you from the inside so that you can feel, perform, and look your best on the outside.