L-carnitine is a compound derived from amino acids that is produced naturally by the body in the kidneys and liver. The scientists at Neuro Drinks note that a person can also obtain L-carnitine through food or as a supplement. L-carnitine is found in many foods, particularly meats such as beef and pork. In fact, L-carnitine was first obtained from meat extracts in 1905, which is where its name comes from (“carnus” is Latin for “flesh”).
L-carnitine is essential for energy production and in aiding in various bodily processes. Additional benefits of L-carnitine appear to include maintaining brain health and reducing the risk of certain illnesses, as the experts at Neuro Drinks discuss below.
Why Do We Need L-carnitine?
The primary role of L-carnitine is to transport long-chain fatty acids into the cell’s mitochondria to be oxidized to produce energy. Thus, L-carnitine is essential for producing energy for the cells, especially those that use fatty acids as fuel, such as skeletal and cardiac tissues. As a secondary function, L-carnitine also aids in the removal of various waste products from cells, preventing buildup that might otherwise cause damage to the body.
Does L-carnitine Promote Heart Health?
The Neuro Drinks team notes that several studies suggest that L-carnitine may benefit various heart health markers. These studies indicate that L-carnitine might temporarily improve heart health and blood and oxygen circulation for those who recently experienced a heart attack. They also point out that supplements may raise the levels of L-carnitine in a failing heart and that taking supplements may help with heart failure symptoms, including arrhythmia and chest pain.
Carnitine Supplements and Chemotherapy
Chemotherapy is a cancer treatment that can often result in fatigue among cancer patients. Studies have previously indicated that cancer patients may also be L-carnitine-deficient, suggesting that L-carnitine supplementation may reduce fatigue levels among patients actively receiving chemotherapy. Indeed, studies have since confirmed that among cancer patients, those also receiving L-carnitine supplements reported less fatigue, elevated mood, and improved quality of sleep.
Carnitine and Muscular Recovery
For some people, L-carnitine supplements are helpful after a serious injury. The molecule can also help muscle recovery and nutrition absorption in aging people. In addition, many athletes take L-carnitine for its performance-enhancing properties. A healthy level of L-carnitine in the body delays muscle metabolism during an intense workout. In a study, adding L-carnitine during intense exercise may help build a person’s endurance. Even non-athletes use L-carnitine after exercise because it lessens muscular tiredness. However, the scientists at Neuro Drinks acknowledge that further research is required on this subject to fully understand how it works.
When Should You Take L-Carnitine?
The ideal L-carnitine dosage and type vary from person to person. The body creates L-carnitine naturally through the liver and kidneys. A healthy body normally produces enough L-carnitine to meet daily requirements. You can also find it in animal proteins, such as red meat, fish, and chicken.
The kidneys store L-carnitine for later use. This implies that a person’s total levels would normally remain constant regardless of diet. The kidneys also eliminate extra L-carnitine through urine to maintain the body’s production at a healthy level. Thus, many healthy adults typically do not need to consume more L-carnitine to support their wellness.
Can You Lose Weight with L-carnitine?
L-carnitine aids in energy production, metabolism, and the breaking down of fats. While many are eager to believe that increasing their intake will help them lose weight, only a few studies support this claim. As a result, the scientists at Neuro Drinks realize that further research is needed.
In the end, boosting L-carnitine intake through supplements cannot replace healthy habits like following a proper diet and frequent exercise. A balanced lifestyle can add to the benefits of the molecule. Aside from L-carnitine, you can also take other nutrients that promote physical and mental well-being.