Carnitine has mistakenly been called an amino acid but due to the fact that it doesn’t have an amine group it is in fact very unique. It has a very similar chemical structure to choline, a B Vitamin, but carnitine is not a vitamin either. Carnitine is unique in that it transports fats to where they need to be burned in the human body and it also helps your mitachondria work more effeciently.
Carnitine can help on a weight loss diet in tandem with a low carbohydrate eating protocol. Carnitine is the gate keeper of fat burning – it transports fats to the parts of the cell that utilise it for fuel. It is found predominantly in red meets like beef and lamb and also wild game. But it is found in all protein foods and the supplement form is made from a synthetic form. All sources of carnitine have a strong effect on weight loss through the fat burning effect we’ve discussed.
Carnitine is also renowned for increasing energy levels and is therefore great for athletes or people who need improved stamina. In doasges of up to 4 grammes a day athletes have reported feeling more energetic and performed better on endurance tasks. it also reduces Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS) in athletes post workout which is an added bonus.
The Acetyl -L form of carnitine is very good for brain health and may one day be shown to aid with conditions like dementia and Alzheimers disease. Along with DHA, carnitine should be part of any brain nutrient rationale as we age.