Top Tip: L-Carnitine Turns Fat Into Energy

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L-Carnitine is a vitamin-like and an amino acid like nutrient in the body which transport fatty acids across the mitochondria (cell’s energy powerhouse) membranes, converting stored body fat into useable energy for the body. Although the body is able to synthesize it, the production of L-Carnitine is a very complex process, requiring numerous vitamins, minerals and amino acids, and often declines as we age.

As L-Carnitine is found primarily in meat, vegetarians and those who are on low meat diet often suffers from low L-Carnitine levels. Other factors such as high fat diets, certain medications, and low protein intake can cause a severe decline in L-Carnitine in the body, causing frequent tiredness, chest pain, muscle weakness and pain, increased body fat and elevated cholesterol.

The heart is highly dependent on L-Carnitine as it obtains 70% of its energy from fat breakdown. As L-Carnitine is required to transport fat into the mitochondria for breakdown into fuel, without sufficient L-Carnitine, the heart muscle will be weak and drained of energy. By accelerating fat burning for energy, L-Carnitine also prevents the build up of fat in this vital organ.

Apart from improving oxygenation of the heart muscle, L-Carnitine, with its antioxidant properties protects the heart muscle and increases its strength. L-Carnitine also promotes cardiovascular health by lowering unhealthy LDL “bad” cholesterol and triglycerides, while preserving and promoting better HDL “good” cholesterol levels.

One of L-Carnitine’s most interesting uses is to protect the heart muscle from drug toxicity and extend the survival rate of patients with heart problems. Numerous studies have shown, that it is helpful for speeding up recovery after a heart attack as well as for treating angina (chest pain), arrhythmia (irregular heartbeats), and congestive heart failure. Studies also suggest that those who take L-Carnitine soon after a heart attack may be less likely to suffer a subsequent heart attack. In fact, the FDA has approved the use of L-Carnitine for the treatment of heart disease and low energy levels.

If the body is not burning fat efficiently, excess fat will be stored away in the body, causing your waist and hips to expand. However, in order for fat to be burned, they must first be transported into the mitochondria where they are broken down. L-Carnitine transports fat into the mitochondria, fires up your body’s “fat burning furnace” to burn fat and increase metabolism for weight loss. In short, L-Carnitine unlocks the energy stored in your fat, allowing you to trim those unsightly bulges while keeping your energy levels high.

Mitochondria functions decline and free radical damage are two main causes of ageing. L-Carnitine is a potent anti-ageing nutrient that functions as an antioxidant and mops away free radicals and improve cellular energy metabolism. It carries fatty acids into the mitochondria, the “furnace of the cell”. Within the “furnace”, the fatty acids are broken down or burned and energy is produced.

Without enough L-Carnitine to move fatty acids to the right place, your body will eventually tire out and you may feel drained and sluggish. L-Carnitine is also important for detoxification – it removes lactic acid, ammonia and other toxic metabolic by products including acyl units that would otherwise disturb the fat burning process and energy production.

In the attempt to cut back on cholesterol intake, many people, especially the elderly reduce their meat consumption and unknowingly reduce their intake of L-Carnitine. Coupled with a decline in L-Carnitine production in the body as one ages, this causes low L-Carnitine levels in the body. This “deficiency” often expresses itself as lowered energy levels, increased body fat and increased blood lipid – typical afflictions of an ageing body. L-Carnitine can be considered a longevity nutrient as it helps seniors stay fit and healthy, both in body and mind.

L-Carnitine literally turns fat into energy: FAT + OXYGEN + L-Carnitine = ENERGY

Article by Bardnurz Sham: Health And Longevity, Shoulders image by Pixabay, Steak image by Mali Maeder.

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