The brain, liver, and kidneys naturally produce the chemical L-carnitine, also known as Levocarnitine. Levocarnitine belongs to a class of amino acid derivatives referred to more generally as carnitine. And, as the scientists behind Neuro Drinks point out, carnitine plays a critical role in energy metabolism. Simply put, L-carnitine transports long-chain fatty acids into mitochondria to be “burned” (i.e., oxidized) to produce energy. As a result, carnitine is usually concentrated in tissues such as cardiac and skeletal muscle that employ fatty acids as an energy source. As a secondary function, carnitine also clears different waste products from cells, preventing buildup that could otherwise cause illness.
L-Carnitine and a Healthy Heart
According to the scientists at Neuro Drinks, a growing body of research suggests the potential benefits of L-carnitine for a range of heart health indicators. These studies suggest that taking L-carnitine supplements may help a failing heart’s L-carnitine levels increase, which may quickly improve heart health and blood and oxygen circulation after a heart attack. In addition to these findings, other research has suggested that taking supplements can alleviate symptoms of heart failure, such as arrhythmia and chest pain. It can also reduce blood pressure and inflammation.
L-Carnitine and the Effects of Chemotherapy
Several studies have indicated that chemotherapy can sometimes result in a lack of L-carnitine among cancer patients. In these instances, L-carnitine supplements may reduce the exhaustion, weakness, and other symptoms often associated with chemotherapy. A similar trial found that cancer patients supplemented with carnitine reported reduced fatigue as well as improved mood and quality of sleep. The experts at Neuro Drinks did note that most of the participants in these studies were deemed carnitine deficient before taking the supplements. They are looking forward to seeing more studies confirming this connection.
L-Carnitine and Brain Health
Studies show that regularly taking acetyl-L-carnitine prevents the loss of brain function caused by Alzheimer’s and other brain conditions. L-carnitine might even prevent brain cell degeneration. Though the exact mechanism of action is unclear, some research suggests a connection between mitochondrial decay and the aging process. Since the concentration of L-carnitine in tissue declines with age, reducing the integrity of the mitochondrial membrane, many scientists believe that L-carnitine supplements could slow aging.
How Can L-carnitine Help the Body?
Each person has a different recommended L-carnitine intake, and a healthy person can produce enough L-carnitine naturally in their kidneys and liver. The kidneys are capable of retaining carnitine. This means that a person’s overall levels should remain constant regardless of diet. The kidneys also flush out surplus carnitine through urine to keep a healthy amount in the body. Adults typically do not need to take more L-carnitine to sustain their health.
Nevertheless, you can also find it in food such as red meat, fish, and chicken. In fact, the name carnitine comes from the Latin word “carnus,” meaning “flesh,” which was chosen after being successfully extracted from meat in 1905.
L-Carnitine and Athletic Performance
Many athletes claim that L-carnitine can improve performance. They have observed that higher L-carnitine levels lower muscle metabolism during high-impact exercise. This finding suggests that carnitine may improve exercise endurance. It is important to remember that the effects of L-carnitine take several weeks to be noticeable, which can seem like a long time when compared with other performance-enhancing supplements like caffeine.
Some people have found that L-carnitine supplements can be very helpful after a major injury. This is especially true as people age and need more nutrients that keep muscles in good form. Even non-athletes take L-carnitine after exercise because it significantly decreases muscular fatigue. The experts at Neuro Drinks everyone to be sure they understand their body’s unique nutritional needs.
Can a Person Lose Weight with L-Carnitine?
L-Carnitine helps with burning fats and energy production. While many think increasing their consumption can aid in weight loss, more research is necessary in this area. Immediately raising your carnitine intake cannot replace more healthy habits like eating right and working out regularly. As the experts at Neuro Drinks advise, you should always first consult a physician before augmenting your diet with a new exercise program or additional supplements.