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Health Encyclopedia

L-Carnitine

General Description

L-carnitine is a vitamin-like nutrient, related in chemical structure to the B vitamins. In the human body, L-carnitine is synthesized from the amino acid lysine in the liver and kidneys. Dietary sources of L-carnitine include meat and dairy products, with red meat being the richest source. L-carnitine supplements are produced synthetically.

Health Applications

  • Cardiovascular health
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle development

Primary Functions

In the body, L-carnitine plays a crucial role in the transport and metabolism of fatty acids, helping the muscles utilize fat as an energy source. Supplemental L-carnitine is popular for improving energy levels in athletes and fatigue sufferers and for promoting cardiovascular function.

Dosage/Toxicity

L-carnitine supplements are typically taken in doses ranging from 1 to 4 grams per day. It is generally well tolerated in this dosage range, with no significant side effects reported in human clinical studies. There is no known toxicity with L-carnitine, even at very high doses.

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