Carnitine & Weight Loss
Carnitine (also known as L-Carnitine) is a compound that is biosynthesized from amino acids. It is considered a pseudo amino acid. Carnitine assists in turning fat into energy as it transports fatty acids to be turned into energy. It is also in foods such as red meat, dairy and avocados. Carnitine is often used as a dietary supplement to aid in weight loss.
Carnitine is produced by the kidneys and liver. It lives in various parts of the body, including sperm, heart and muscles. Carnitine has been used to treat conditions such as heart disease, Alzheimer’s disease, erectile dysfunction, hyperthyroidism and chronic fatigue syndrome.
Carnitine is a supplement that is often used to aid in weight loss. In addition, it’s used as a supplement to enhance exercise performance. Increasing exercise performance and endurance can assist in weight loss as well. Clayton South, an expert in the body building industry, states that Carnitine does help build muscle, and it can also be an appetite suppressant.
There are mixed results on whether or not Carnitine is effective for weight loss. In 2002, a study conducted at the Institute of Nutritional Sciences in Germany found that Carnitine did not result in greater weight loss.
Alternately, Carnitine is a supplement that bodybuilders and fitness athletes take as part of their program. Bodybuilders and fitness athletes often supplement heavily with Carnitine before a competition because it aids in cutting fat and allows the muscles to be showcased. In addition, they use it to boost energy levels to complete grueling workouts.
Is L-Carnitine Safe?
Sixty million Americans are obese, the majority of whom are trying to lose weight. L-carnitine is a safe nutritional supplement that can increase metabolism and help with your weight loss goal.
What It Is
L-carnitine is an amino acid that occurs naturally and aids in the process of metabolizing fat in the body. It works through transporting fatty acids to cells, more specifically to the mitochondria.
How It Works
L-carnitine works by boosting your energy and burning triglycerides (fat stored in the body made of excess calories, sugar and alcohol) allowing your body to burn more fat while increasing stamina and endurance.
The National Institute of Health’s Dietary Guidelines for Americans suggest most adults get enough L-carnitine from either the body’s natural production or through a healthy diet containing low-fat milk, fruits, grains and vegetables. For weight-loss goals, 3 grams per day is considered an appropriate dose.
While the effects are not life-threatening, symptoms may include vomiting, nausea, diarrhea, cramps and sometimes a body odor that smells like fish. On rare occasions, usually when taking more than the recommended allowance, people report muscle weakness and seizures in those who have a seizure disorder.
L-carnitine has shown to have a negative reaction when taken with some antibiotics, especially prescribed for on-going treatment of urinary tract infections. However, these interactions are not life threatening, as the drug combination results in low levels of carnitine in the body, but no illnesses were reported as a result of this.
Effective and Safe
Studies by the National Institute of Health have shown no major side effects or harm caused as long as taken in moderate amounts. Whether or not it is effective in aiding weight loss, it depends on the overall diet consumed more than the addition of L-carnitine as a way to lose weight.