L-carnitine, or carnitine, is an amino acid that has captured the attention of consumers who strive to live a healthy life. But, why? Basically, L-carnitine helps the body turn fat into energy and acts as an antioxidant. It is a substance produced in the liver and kidneys and stored it in the skeletal muscle, heart, brain and sperm. Some people may not have enough carnitine because their bodies cannot make enough or it cannot transport it into tissues so it can be used. Some people undergoing a medical procedure such as hemodialysis for kidney disease, may also have low levels of L-carnitine since the procedure may use it up.

Also, some conditions such as intermittent claudication or angina can lead to low levels of carnitine. This amino acid is important for heart and brain function, muscle movement, and many other body processes.

Some studies that oral carnitine reduces fat mass, increases muscle mass, and reduces fatigue, making L-carnitine a popular weight loss aid. However, according to the University of Maryland Medical Center, carnitine has been proposed as a treatment for many conditions, even some serious ones (remember to always consult your doctor before taking any kind of supplement).  Besides helping with heart conditions, exercise performance, and weight loss, L-carnitine is believed to help with peripheral vascular disease, diabetic neuropathy, Alzheimer’s disease and memory impairment, kidney disease and dialysis, male infertility, erectile dysfunction, Peyronie’s disease, and hyperthyroidism.

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