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Carnitine 11 August 2009

Acetyl-L-carnitine (ALC) and propionyl-L-carnitine (PLC) are naturally occurring amino acids and are a source of carnitine for our cells. Carnitine helps transport fatty acids into mitochondria where they are used for fuel. Carnitine levels decrease with age. ALC is more important for energy production because it also helps deliver acetyl groups to the mitochondria. Acetyl groups are important in the production of acetyl-coenzyme A (used in energy production) and acetylcholine (a brain neurotransmitter. Decreased levels occur in Alzheimer’s disease).

ALC is an essential compoment of my weight loss programme because it burns fat. Fat that would have otherwise stored, is now burned and converted into energy.

ALC has been used with effect in people with early cognitive deficits. It has been used to protect nerves against damage in people with diabetes and protect eye sight from deterioration. There is some evidence that PLC may be useful in cardiovascular diseases. ALC and PLC are not antioxidants. In fact they can increase free radicals by stoking the furnaces (mitochondria) where energy is produced. Products containing ALC and PLC may contain alpha-lipoic acid as an antioxidant.

Combinations of ALC and PLC are now being discovered to have a role in male sexual health.

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