L-Carnitine

Discussion in 'Health & Fitness' started by The Victor, Sep 14, 2006.

  1. The Victor

    The Victor Rookie

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    I was just wondering if anyone uses any dietetic suplement based on or containing L-Carnitine and what do you think about it.
    Does it work? Any side effects or warnings?
    I'd like to lose a few pounds, that would help my tennis game a lot, I think.

    Combining this suplement with exercise and eating better could do the trick. Thoughts?
     
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  2. jackson vile

    jackson vile Legend

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    You would want to combine it with a anti oxidant that effects the mitochondria as that is where the carnitine will take effect.

    What happens is that it will increase the performance of the cell, increasing output, that this means is that you will increase oxidation and if you do not use and AO you will induce a higher than normal amount of damage to the cells.

    You will get really sore and tired faster, not a good thing.

    What are some good supps of the mito? ALA R-ALA, SOD, and Idebenone/Q10 mix.

    Also you will want to use the the acetyl form acetyl-carnitine, you can get 100g for $9.00

    As for the AO the cheapest would be regular ALA 100mg caps 120 for $8.25

    Look at Beyond A Century.

    Best combo though is the Carnatine-Argonite 100g $36 with the Ideb/Q10 mix 50g for $30
     
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  3. Ano

    Ano Hall of Fame

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    L-Carnitine is an amino acid that has a role to play in metabolizing fatty acids.

    L-Carnitine acts to transport long chain fatty acids into the mitochondria of the cell, where these fats can be metabolized and used for fuel (1).

    Being an amino acid, L-Carnitine in present in many of the protein foods you eat every day, especially in meat.

    With regard to safety, -carnitine has been involved in countless clinical trials over the years and to my knowedge certainly no known side effects have been reported. Rather, positive effects have been reported (in addition to the role L carnitine plays in fat burning) involving the ability of L-carnitine to significantly lower blood pressure in spontneously hypertensive rats in the scientific literature (2).

    Furthermore, many a case of carnitine deficiency has been reported, further solidifying supplementation (3)

    References:

    1. Heinonen, OJ. Sports Med 22(2):109-132
    2. Rauchova, H., et al., Eur J Pharmacol (342)235-239, 1998
    3. Bach, J & Balch P. Prescription for Nutrition Healing. Avery Publishing Group, 1997.

    But if you want to lose weight, my advice to you is to do regular cardio (3-5 times a week) 30-45 minutes per session. Start up slowly, and gradually increase your frequency and duration when your condition improve.

    Eat small meals 5-6 times a day consisting of skinless chicken breast, egg whites, lean beef, fish such as tuna, salmon (this one is pretty high in fat, but its fine because it's a good fat), protein shakes, brown rice, sweet potattoes, fruits and green veggies.

    Weight training also important to build or at least to maintain your muscle. Remember muscle burn calories. If you build more muscle, you will burn more calories. (1 pound of muscle burns between 30 - 50 calories per day). Do basic exercise such as bench press, Pull down, shoulder press, leg press, stiff leg dead lift for 1-3 sets, 2 times a week. Again, start slowly and increase your frequency, sets, weight and intensity as your conditioning has improved.

    Eliminate junk foods such as ice creams, fried foods, cakes and basically everything that taste good. When you reduce your bad fat intake (saturated fat, trans fat) , it's a good idea to take 1 table spoon of good fat such as flax seed oil so you don't deficient in good fats such as Omega-3 and Omega-6

    And don't forget to drink plenty of water through out the day until your urine is clear or pale in color.

    Good luck.
     
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  4. You cannot be serious !!!

    You cannot be serious !!! Rookie

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    Good advice mate. Nothing beats a good healthy diet and regular exercise. Another thing to add is to drink alcohol in moderation. Having a not too late dinner with less carbs helps too.

    I for one am not a strong believer of supplements. I used to weight train obsessively and use to drink protein supplement shakes and take all sorts of stuff that i can't even remember - it got me huge, but when I stopped training I just lost it all too quickly and the bulges started coming out....
     
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  5. Phil

    Phil Hall of Fame

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    Regular use of L-Carnitine will contribute to weight loss...almost exclusively in your WALLET. The stuff is expensive and it does not work-or certainly doesn't work as advertised, as a "weight loss" supplement.

    Save your money and time and take Ano's advice. And...before you even begin a new program, analyze your current diet/eating habits and excercise regimine, determine what you are doing WRONG (e.g. too much beer, not enough cardio, etc.), and then...change those bad habits. Then hit the gym 4 to 6 times a week. It works. I would recommend that you not use ANY supplements other than, say, a basic multivitamin. Total waste of money.
     
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  6. You cannot be serious !!!

    You cannot be serious !!! Rookie

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    Spot on the money Phil
     
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  7. The Victor

    The Victor Rookie

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    Thanks for the input everyone.

    Actually I overheard a trainer at my gym talking wonders about L-Carnitine, and that's why I started the thread. I've never taken any supplements.

    I'll definitely try to eat better and go to the gym (although I'll only be able to go a couple of times a week on account of my occupation). I've lost weight before doing just that, so I know I'm capable of doing it again, but my life doesn't allow much time for working out. I'll try to go running a couple of times a week along with working out at the gym.
     
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  8. chess9

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  9. jackson vile

    jackson vile Legend

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    Wow some serious ignorance on this post LOL

    First ditch the free form and get the acetyl form that is leaps and bounds more effective.


    And yes it does work, and yes it will help you lose fat and be able to work at a higher level for longer when use in conjuction with an AO that works in the mitochondria.


    I can' belive people making coments and they don't even understand how it works or it's implications towards athletes.


    Alpha lipoic acid (ALA) and Acetyl-L-Carnitine (ALCAR) are two nutrients that have been the subject of considerable research as of late. Both compounds display many impressive properties, and have many synergistic effects when combined. The ALA and ALCAR combination has significant anti-aging and cognition improving properties and can also be effectively used for fat loss and to increase athletic performance.

    ALCAR is the acetylated version of L-carnitine, an important amino acid that improves mitochondrial function and plays a role in fatty acid oxidation. ALCAR may be more bioavailable than l-carnitine, and also provides acetyl groups for synthesis of compounds such as acetylcholine. ALCAR also has a cholinomimetic effect on its own. Both ALCAR and l-carnitine have been successfully used to treat a very wide range of conditions with little or no side effects.

    ALA is a naturally occuring antioxidant enzyme that is also an important mitochondrial component. It has many properties that make it superior to most other antioxidants. Like ALCAR, ALA has been used to treat various conditions, particularly diabetes.

    Studies with both ALCAR and L-carnitine indicate that they can improve athletic performance. This is because carnitine improves fatty acid oxidation, increasing fuel availability and preserving muscle glycogen. Carnitine also appears to favorably effect markers of recovery and the hormonal response to resistance exercise. Many trials have found that supplemental carnitine improves exercise performance in individuals that are impaired in some way, such as patients with angina, patients with cardiac insufficiency, and hemodialysis patients. In healthy humans, one study found that carnitine increased endurance, an effect that was potentiated further by caffeine. Some animal studies have also found performance increases from carnitine supplementation. ALA may synergize with ALCAR and further increase exercise performance in two ways. First, it may increase glucose transport to muscle, particularly because exercise is associated with a high degree of oxidative stress. Secondly, ALA and ALCAR may synergize to increase fatty acid utilization and cellular energy production.

    A second benefit of ALCAR is fat loss. Studies in animals have found it to decrease fat mass and/or increase lean mass, as well as blunt the age-related increase in fat cell size. In a study in humans, 700 mg carnitine and 900 mg choline caused a significant decrease in body fat. Once again, ALA may synergize by improving mitochondrial function and fatty acid oxidation, as well as having a positive nutrient partitioning effect when used around exercise.

    In the area of anti-aging research, Dr. Bruce Ames has had very promising results with this combination of nutrients. Mitochondrial damage is a significant factor in the aging process, and ALCAR greatly improves mitochondrial function when given to old rats. Along with this comes improved short term memory and cognitive function, an effect that has also been observed when elderly humans are given ALCAR. However, Dr. Ames also found that when rodents were given high (but not low) doses of ALCAR, hepatic antioxidant status was lowered. ALA prevented this, and also caused an even further improvement in mitochondrial function. Ames concluded, "Supplementing the diet of old rats with ALCAR and LA significantly improves many of the most frequently encountered age-related changes in mammals – namely loss of energy metabolism, increased oxidative stress, decreased physical activity, and impaired cognitive function."
     
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  10. jackson vile

    jackson vile Legend

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    Alpha Lipoic Acid, Acetyl-L-Carnitine and Carnosine
    The Latest Significant Research on This Powerful Life Extension Trio
    By Tim Batchelder, B.A.

    ALC helps maintain liver function, which is essential for detoxification. One new study found that ALC almost completely restores the age-dependent decline in oxygen consumption, gluconeogenesis, urea synthesis, and ketogenesis found in the liver of old rats to the levels found in young rats.37 ALC also helps prevent hepatoxicity and increases survival during chemotherapy with heptotoxic alkylating agents for cancer.38 ALC and ALA are useful in treating muscle and nerve mitochondrial toxicity caused by nucleoside analog reverse transcriptase inhibitor therapy for HIV-AIDS.39 ALC also enhances detoxification of ethanol in the liver as well as the unpleasant side effects of detoxification. For example, it significantly reduces the onset of tremors in ethanol withdrawal syndrome as well as the level of ethanol intake in alcohol-preferring rats.40 One new study shows that ALA (and its chemical cousin alpha-lipoamide (LM) may work as an antioxidant by chelating iron which is involved in cell death by lysosomal rupture.41 Further, since it has a particular affinity for the liver ALA can also treat liver damage from mushroom poisoning, snake venom, acetaldehyde and viral hepatitis. ALA was studied extensively in the 1950s for radiation protection and was found to be more effective than other common radio-protectants such as cysteamine. It was put to use for victims of Chernobyl, and as a sulfur compound, can bind and eliminate heavy metals. ALA is also shown to decrease smoking-related lipid peroxidation.42 Finally, carnosine is a potent radioprotectant and prevents damage by cold, hyperthermia, and hypoxia.43

    Support for Energy, Muscle Recovery and Weight Loss
    Exercise creates a heavy load of free radical activity, which makes it a natural target for powerful antioxidants like ALA, ALC and carnosine. Several recent studies have looked at how these compounds work to protect muscle tissue during exercise and maintain energy stores. For example, one study noted that carnosine inhibits lipid peroxidation and oxidative modification of protein in muscle tissue.44 It works as a pH buffer to protect muscle cells from oxidation under the acidic conditions of muscular exertion. Similar, ALA decreases lipid peroxidation and lactic acid accumulation and increases levels of glutathione, vitamins C and E and the activities of mitochondrial enzymes, which prevents tissue damage and improves ATP (energy) synthesis.45 ALA also helps Chronic Fatigue Syndrome.46 Finally, ALA and exercise interact in an additive fashion to improve insulin action in insulin-resistant skeletal muscles in obese rats.47

    Conclusion
    The surge of recent research on the synergies and anti-aging benefits of ALA, ALC and carnosine is making them an important addition to any supplement plan. What is so exciting is the versatility of these antioxidant compounds, which seem to work in so many body systems, from the nervous system to the cardiovascular, musculoskeletal and immune systems. In doing so they are able to effectively combat the major diseases of our time including diabetes, cognitive decline and Alzheimer’s, heart disease, obesity and immune disorders such as cancer and HIV-AIDS.
     
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  11. jackson vile

    jackson vile Legend

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    References

    1. Liu J, et al. Memory loss in old rats is associated with brain mitochondrial decay and RNA/DNA oxidation: partial reversal by feeding aceyl-l-carnitine and/or R-alpha- lipoic acid. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 2002 Feb 19;99(4):2356-61.

    2. Hagen TM, et al. Feeding acetyl-l-carntine and lipoic acid to old rats significantly improves the metabolic function while decreasing oxidative stress. Proc Natl Acad Sci USA 2002 Feb 19;99(4):1870-5.

    3. Giancaterini A, et al. Acetyl-L-carnitine infusion increases glucose disposal in type 2 diabetic patients. Metabolism 2000 Jun;49(6):704-8.

    4. Yamano T,et al. Effect of L-carnosine on the hyperglycemia caused by intracranial injection of 2-deoxy-D-glucose in rats. Neurosci Lett 2001 Nov 2;313(1-2):78-82.

    5. Packer L, et al. Molecular aspects of lipoic acid in the prevention of diabetes complications. Nutrition 2001 Oct;17(10):888-95.

    6. Ford I, et al. The effects of treatment with alpha-lipoic acid or evening primrose oil on vascular hemostatic and lipid risk factors, blood flow, and peripheral nerve conduction in the streptozotocin-diabetic rat. Metabolism 2001 Aug;50(8):868-75.

    7. Coppey LJ, et al. Effect of antioxidant treatment of streptozotocin-induced diabetic rats on endoneurial blood flow, motor nerve conduction velocity and vascular reactivity of epineurial arterioles of the sciatic nerve. Diabetes 2001 Aug;50(8):1927-37.

    8. Cameron NE, et al. Effect of alpha-lipoic acid on vascular responses and nociception in diabetic rats. Free Radic Biol Med 2001 Jul 1;31(1):125-35.

    9. Heitzer T, et al. Beneficial effects of alpha-lipoic acid and ascorbic acid on endothelium-dependent, nitric oxide-mediated vasodilation in diabetic patients: relation to parameters of oxidative stress. Free Radic Biol Med 2001 Jul 1;31(1):53-61.

    10. Ukeda H, et al. Effect of carnosine and related compounds on the inactivation of human Cu,Zn-superoxide dismutase by modification of fructose and glycolaldehyde. Biosci Biotechnol Biochem 2002 Jan;66(1):36-43.

    11. Hipkiss AR. On the “struggle between chemistry and biology during aging”--implications for DNA repair, apoptosis and proteolysis, and a novel route of intervention. Biogerontology 2001;2(3):173-8.

    12. Packer Let al. Molecular aspects of lipoic acid in the prevention of diabetes complications. Nutrition 2001 Oct;17(10):888-95.

    13. Melhem MF, et al. Alpha-lipoic acid attenuates hyperglycemia and prevents glomerular mesangial matrix expansion in diabetes. J Am Soc Nephrol 2002 Jan;13(1):108-16.

    14. Virmani MA, et al. The action of acetyl-L-carnitine on the neurotoxicity evoked by amyloid fragments and peroxide on primary rat cortical neurones. Ann N Y Acad Sci 2001 Jun;939:162-78.

    15. Zhang L, et al. Alpha-lipoic acid protects rat cortical neurons against cell death induced by amyloid and hydrogen peroxide through the Akt signalling pathway. Neurosci Lett 2001 Oct 26;312(3):125-8.

    16. Dukic-Stefanovic S, et al. AGES in brain ageing: AGE-inhibitors as neuroprotective and anti-dementia drugs? Biogerontology 2001;2(1):19-34.

    17. Price DL, et al. Chelating activity of advanced glycation end-product inhibitors. J Biol Chem 2001 Dec 28;276(52):48967-72.

    18. Ando S, et al. Enhancement of learning capacity and cholinergic synaptic function by carnitine in aging rats. J Neurosci Res 2001 Oct 15;66(2):266-71.

    19. Pettegrew JW, et al. Acetyl-L-carnitine physical-chemical, metabolic, and therapeutic properties: relevance for its mode of action in Alzheimer’s disease and geriatric depression. Mol Psychiatry 2000 Nov;5(6):616-32.

    20. Sorbi S, et al. Double-blind, crossover, placebo-controlled clinical trial with L-acetylcarnitine in patients with degenerative cerebellar ataxia. Clin Neuropharmacol 2000 Mar-Apr;23(2):114-8.

    21. Andreassen OA, et al. Lipoic acid improves survival in transgenic mouse models of Huntington’s disease. Neuroreport 2001 Oct 29;12(15):3371-3.

    22. Hager K, et al. Alpha-lipoic acid as a new treatment option for Azheimer type dementia. Arch Gerontol Geriatr 2001 Jun;32(3):275-282.

    23. Gonzalez-Perez O, et al. Beneficial effects of alpha-lipoic acid plus vitamin E on neurological deficit, reactive gliosis and neuronal remodeling in the penumbra of the ischemic rat brain. Neurosci Lett 2002 Mar 15;321(1-2):100-4.

    24. Piotrowski P, et al. Neuronal death in the rat hippocampus in experimental diabetes and cerebral ischaemia treated with antioxidants. Folia Neuropathol 2001;39(3):147-54.

    25. Liu J, et al. Memory loss in old rats is associated with brain mitochondrial decay and RNA/DNA oxidation: partial reversal by feeding acetyl-L-carnitine and/or R-alpha -lipoic acid. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2002 Feb 19;99(4):2356-61.

    26. Hagen TM, et al. Feeding acetyl-L-carnitine and lipoic acid to old rats significantly improves metabolic function while decreasing oxidative stress. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A 2002 Feb 19;99(4):1870-5.

    27. Zhang WJ, Frei B. Alpha-lipoic acid inhibits TNF-alpha-induced NF-kappaB activation and adhesion molecule expression in human aortic endothelial cells. FASEB J 2001 Nov;15(13):2423-32.

    28. Decker EA, et al. Inhibition of low-density lipoprotein oxidation by carnosine histidine. J Agric Food Chem 2001 Jan;49(1):511-6.

    29. El Midaoui A, de Champlain J. Prevention of hypertension, insulin resistance, and oxidative stress by alpha-lipoic acid. Hypertension 2002 Feb;39(2):303-7.

    30. Takaoka M, et al. Effects of alpha-lipoic acid on deoxycorticosterone acetate-salt-induced hypertension in rats. Eur J Pharmacol 2001 Jul 20;424(2):121-9.

    31. Hipkiss AR, et al. Carnosine, the anti-aging, anti-oxidant dipeptide, may react with protein carbonyl groups. Mech Ageing Dev 2001 Sep 15;122(13):1431-45.

    32. Roberts PR, Zaloga GP. Cardiovascular effects of carnosine. Biochemistry (Mosc) 2000 Jul;65(7):856-61.

    33. Arivazhagan P, et al. Effect of DL-alpha-lipoic acid on glutathione metabolic enzymes in aged rats. Exp Gerontol 2001 Dec;37(1):81-7.

    34. Koufaki M, et al. Novel potent inhibitors of lipid peroxidation with protective effects against reperfusion arrhythmias. J Med Chem 2001 Nov 22;44(24):4300-3.

    35. Pack RA, et al. Differential effects of the antioxidant alpha-lipoic acid on the proliferation of mitogen-stimulated peripheral blood lymphocytes and leukaemic T cells. Mol Immunol 2002 Feb;38(10):733-45.

    36. Casciari JJ, et al.. Cytotoxicity of ascorbate, lipoic acid, and other antioxidants in hollow fibre in vitro tumours. Br J Cancer 2001 Jun 1;84(11):1544-50.

    37. Mollica MP, et al. Acetyl-L-carnitine treatment stimulates oxygen consumption and biosynthetic function in perfused liver of young and old rats. Cell Mol Life Sci 2001 Mar;58(3):477-84.

    38. Niang M, Melka M. Effect of acetyl-L-carnitine on leukemia L1210 resistant to mitoxantrone. Acta Medica (Hradec Kralove) 2000;43(4):125-8.

    39. Patrick L. Nutrients and HIV: part three - N-acetylcysteine, alpha-lipoic acid, L-glutamine, and L-carnitine. : Altern Med Rev 2000 Aug;5(4):290-305.

    40. Mangano NG, et al. Effect of acetyl-L-carnitine on ethanol consumption and alcohol abstinence syndrome in rats. Drugs Exp Clin Res 2000;26(1):7-12.

    41. Persson HL, et al. Alpha-lipoic acid and alpha-lipoamide prevent oxidant-induced lysosomal rupture and apoptosis. Redox Rep 2001;6(5):327-34.

    42. Dietrich M, et al. Antioxidant supplementation decreases lipid peroxidation biomarker F(2)-isoprostanes in plasma of smokers. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 2002 Jan;11(1):7-13.

    43. Akhalaia MIa, et al. Effect of natural radioprotector carnosine on histamine-diamine oxidase system of rat’s myocardium after action of various extreme factors. Radiats Biol Radioecol 2001 Jan-Feb;41(1):56-8.

    44. Nagasawa T, et al. In vitro and in vivo inhibition of muscle lipid and protein oxidation by carnosine. Mol Cell Biochem 2001 Sep;225(1-):29-34.

    45. Arivazhagan P, et al. Effect of DL-alpha-lipoic acid on mitochondrial enzymes in aged rats. Chem Biol Interact 2001 Nov 28;138(2):189-98.

    46. Logan AC, Wong C. Chronic fatigue syndrome: oxidative stress and dietary modifications. Altern Med Rev 2001 Oct;6(5):450-9.

    47. Saengsirisuwan V, et al. Interactions of exercise training and lipoic acid on skeletal muscle glucose transport in obese Zucker rats. J Appl Physiol 2001 Jul;91(1):145-53.
     
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  12. Kevin T

    Kevin T Professional

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    Phil is pretty much correct. L-canitine is non-essential, meaning it is produced in abundance in our bodies. L-carnitine is present in pretty much every cell of the body and is synthesized by the liver and kidneys. Because plasma levels are not reflective of muscle levels, deficiencies are commonly misdiagnosed. The two categories of deficiency: 1. autosomal recessive and 2. secondary (usually enzymatic) are extremely rare. No credible deficiency studies have been completed in North America but deficiency rates in Japan have been estimated at 1 in 40,000 and in Australia at 1 in 37,000-100,000. There is ZERO evidence of deficiency in the vegetarian population (a popular target in bodybuilding and fitness mags). Significant deficiencies have been observed
    in those on long-term TPN (total parenteral nutrition) and on long-term valproic therapy. Studies showing l-carnitine benefits in weight loss and exercise performance are typically 1. involving animal models (cats, rats, monkeys, aliens) and 2. human studies with little, if any, statistical power (<10 subjects).

    On a final note, l-carnitine is abundant in meat and dairy products. Human absorption of these natural forms has been measured at ~75%, while absorption of synthetic and/or supplement forms is typically 15%. This is almost universally the case for all vitamin/mineral/amino acid supplements (with the exception of folate).

    1. Eat your fruits and veggies, 5-9 daily
    2. eat a variety of foods every day
    3. limit saturated fat and sodium
    4. get off your rear and exercise 45 minutes to an hour every day
    5. limit portion sizes
    6. viola!

    PubMed and PDR are wonderful things! I highly recommend Nancy Clark's 'Sports Nutrition Guide Book, 3rd edition'

    kevin t PhD, RD, ACSM-certified exercise specialist
     
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  13. ollinger

    ollinger Legend

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    I never quite understood the rationale for using carnitine. Now it seems to be in the news as something that can significantly increase your risk of heart disease. Caveat emptor.
     
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  14. maggmaster

    maggmaster Hall of Fame

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    There are abstracts on both sides of that debate. Suffice it to say that you are not going to "get ripped" because you take carnitine, in any form. Losing weight is 80% diet 19 % exercise and 1% supplements.
     
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  15. Kevin T

    Kevin T Professional

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    Very interesting study, particularly the results of vegans eating meat vs the regular meat eaters.

    http://www.nytimes.com/2013/04/08/h...rit-in-heart-disease.html?pagewanted=all&_r=0

    This study should certainly give daily meat eaters energy drink addicts pause.
     
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  16. Talker

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    #16
  17. Kevin T

    Kevin T Professional

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    Masterjohn gives an interesting rebuttal but as a PhD candidate, he should know that his wish list of what the study should have looked at is nearly impossible. He spends a lot of time on TMA+TMAO levels of various foods in the urinary samples of 6 individuals, while the Cleveland Clinic study was looking at post-ingestion plasma samples=huge difference. I don't think the study authors would sound the alarm to the same degree as the media but it certainly deserves more attention. Particularly this bit:

    "Researchers then tried to determine whether people with high blood carnitine or TMAO levels were at higher heart disease risk. They analyzed blood from more than 2,500 people, asking if carnitine or TMAO levels predicted heart attacks independently of traditional risk factors like smoking, high cholesterol and blood pressure. Both carnitine and TMAO did. But upon further analysis, they discovered that the effect was solely because of TMAO"

    I'm quite sure this group is recruiting for a study involving a much larger sample size to confirm things.

    Hope all is well with you, Talker.
     
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  18. Talker

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    All is well Kevin, Thanks! :)

    And thanks for weighing in on this, it's a little out of my area and haven't really looked at this too closely.

    There is a thread on this elsewhere so will check that out later.
     
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  19. Talker

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    Found some info on this: Kind of long but maybe someone will want it. :)


    Carnitine
     
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