L-carnitine, a water-soluble nutrient produced from the amino acids lysine and methionine, is found in all living tissue. The primary role of L-carnitine is to create ATP. L-carnitine transports fatty acids into mitochondrial membranes, where they are converted into ATP.
The benefits of L-carnitine are particularly helpful in coronary artery disease treatment, as it helps deliver extra oxygen to blocked arteries. L-carnitine also prevents the production of toxic fatty acids. These malicious byproducts not only cause severe oxidative stress and damage cell membranes, over time they can also create changes throughout the heart that contribute to atherosclerosis.
The benefits of L-carnitine also includes improved blood circulation problems. It improves blood flow by supporting better use of oxygen in the tissues.
Supplemental L-Carnitine Options
Supplemental L-carnitine comes in a number of forms. Any of them would be beneficial, but I prefer broad-spectrum products that incorporate all forms of the nutrient: L-carnitine fumarate, acetyl-L-carnitine and propionyl-L-carnitine.
For the optimal benefits of L-carnitine, take 500–1,000 mg two to three times daily (total daily dosage: 1–3 grams). Start at the low end of the dosage scale and work up until you achieve the desired effect. L-carnitine may require fine-tuning to obtain the optimal therapeutic blood level.