Nutrition Made Simple


February 06 2021



L-arginine or simply called as arginine is an alpha-amino acid. It carries an alpha-amino group, an alpha-carboxylic acid group and a side chain containing a 3-carbon aliphatic straight-chain ending with a guanidino group.

L-Carnitine is a naturally occurring physiological compound. It is an amino acid and an essential cofactor of fatty acid metabolism.

Carnitine is found in all cells of the body. Carnitine is synthesized in the human body with the help of metabolic enzymes and various nutrients such as iron, ascorbic acid, and zinc. It is produced mainly in the kidneys and liver from 2 amino acids i.e. lysine and methionine. 

L carnitine is stored in the brain, heart and skeletal muscles. It is also stored in the sperms in men. Carnitine facilitates the transport of fatty acids for beta-oxidation and energy production. It is also responsible to transport the toxic compounds from mitochondria to prevent their accumulation.

Mitochondria in the body are responsible for burning fats to create energy for the proper functioning of the cells and body as a whole and Carnitine act as a shuttle transporting these fatty acids into the mitochondria of the cell.

Carnitine is found in different forms such as D-carnitine (mirror image), Acetyl-L-Carnitine, L-carnitine L-tartrate, propionyl-L-carnitine. L and D carnitine are isomers, but L-carnitine is the most therapeutically active form which is synthesized in the body.

Sources of L-carnitine:

Red meat, fish, poultry, milk are the best sources. Ice cream, whole bread, cheddar cheese and asparagus also contain carnitine.

As already stated, carnitine is abundantly produced in the body, but supplements may be required by vegans or people with genetic disorders who are unable to produce the required amounts. In people with chronic renal failure and the use of certain antibiotics may result in Carnitine.

Carnitine deficiency may cause cardiomyopathy, hypoglycemia and skeletal muscle weakness.

Health benefits of L-Carnitine

Aids in weight loss:

Studies have shown that L-Carnitine supplementation can influence lipid metabolism in some species and can also affect the body composition of growing animals. In a study, rats were fed with L-carnitine (5 g/kg) for 23 days. The results showed that the rats lost a considerable amount of weight on the energy-reduced diet. At the same time, a shift occurred in the ratio of fat to protein in favour of protein in the carcass, leading to a marked reduction of body fat levels and a slight reduction of protein levels.

Maintains Heart Health:

L-Carnitine has shown to provide a plethora of benefits when administered after acute myocardial infarction. L-Carnitine has been shown to lessen infarct size, to reduce ventricular arrhythmias, left ventricular dilation, and heart failure incidence, as well as improve survival. These benefits are due to its ability to boost glucose oxidation in ischemic tissues and an increase in fatty acyl-coenzyme A levels that can impair mitochondrial efficiency and promote oxidative stress and inflammation.

Maintains brain health:

Research study shows that alterations of fatty acids and lipid metabolism occur in depression. Low cholesterol levels are associated with a higher prevalence of depressive symptoms and risk for suicide. L-Carnitine has anti-depressant activity and influences membrane phospholipid metabolism. Such a mechanism could affect the secretion of hormones, cytokines and prostaglandins. It might also useful in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease by causing restoration of synaptic function.

Improves exercise performance:

L-carnitine is said to have beneficial effects on increasing exercise performance and tolerance. A study on 12 subjects was done to determine the effect of carnitine on exercise performance. The results showed an increase in the limit of performance and oxygen consumption.

How to take L-carnitine?

Carnitine can be obtained through dietary sources and as supplements. Here's a link to Alvizia's amino acids supplements L-carnitine 500mg - 90 Tablets (PACK OF 2), Pre-workout & Post-workout supplement for Muscle, Brain & Heart health.

This article is the sole opinion of the author and Alvizia Healthcare holds no responsibility for the content. *

Tagged: L-Carnitine, Tablets, Weight-Management, Workout-Support


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