L-carnitine is an increasingly popular supplement in sports. Many athletes use L-carnitine supplements to stimulate their body to become more efficient in burning fat and transform fat into energy.
In this blog, we analyze this amino acid derivate and present our energy gel with L-carnitine, created to make best use of L-carnitine's effect in combination with carbohydrates.
What is L-carnitine?
L-carnitine is a biological form of carnitine formed in your kidneys by two amino acids, lysine and methionine.
It is well-established that carnitine has an important role in fat metabolism. In fact, carnitine is responsible for the transformation of triglycerides into energy, especially during low-intensity exercise, and at the same time it reduces lactic acid in the muscles.
The effect of L-carnitine is to provide stable energy levels. On the contrary, it's effect is felt most when it's lacking. This happens often to vegetarians and vegans or people who suffer from genetic disorders, but such issues are rarely attributed to carnitine deficiency.
The easiest way to obtain L-carnitine is from read meat, which is why people who don't eat red meat often suffer from L-carnitine deficiency.
L-carnitine is essential for fat metabolism.
What is acetyl-L-carnitine?
Acetyl-L-carnitine is a form of carnitine and an important precursor of many neurotransmitters, such as acetylcholine. Acetyl-L-carnitine improves cognitive abilities, increases fat burn, and boost metabolism.
If you want to make use of the many benefits of acetyl-L-carnitine, check out or high-quality Acetyl-L-Carnitine 4Endurance Pro supplement, which allows you to:
- improve cognitive abilities,
- reduce fatigue,
- boost your metabolism.
Acetyl-L-carnitine increases energy levels and improves cognitive abilities.
L-carnitine and fat burn
More than a supplement to burn fat, L-carnitine is a substance the optimizes the cellular energy function.
Research shows that carnitine increases the concentration of the neurotransmitter and optimizes its function at mitochondrial level.
We have analyzed several studies researching the effect of L-carnitine on athletic performance, weight loss, and fat burn.
We came to the conclusion that there is not substantial evidence that L-carnitine can improve long-term weight loss.
It is true that its positive effect on mitochondrial function can make you feel more energy and allow you to better perform your training session, but this could also be achieved with adaptogens, which seem to be more effective in this regard.
If you are interested in the benefits of ashwagandha, one of the most powerful adaptogens, learn all about it here.
Let's focus on the results of some studies concerning the effects of L-carnitine.
- A meta-study that includes 9 clinical studies with 911 participants confirms that over time on average the participants lost some fat (1.33 kg versus 0.57 kg), but after a meta-regression analysis the fat loss was close to zero.
- Numerous research on supplementation with high carnitine intakes did not show a significant effect of carnitine on weight loss. In fact, 36 women with average obesity after 8 weeks of aerobic exercise did not show any change in body mass or body constitution, even though they were consuming a very high dose of 4 grams of L-carnitine per day.
- A Turkish study, on the other hand, showed that supplementing 3-4 grams of L-carnitine per day increased time to exhaustion and lowered pulse in professional soccer players.
These studies demonstrate that L-carnitine is primarily a substance that optimizes cellular function. In other words, it unifies the function of anaerobic and aerobic metabolism, which improves your athletic performance.
Why can't I lose weight even with diet and training?
The reason is your metabolism. In fact, the closer you get to the anaerobic threshold and the more your heart rate increases, the more your body draws energy from glycogen, the source of glucose stored in your body, instead of burning fat.
On the other hand, a slow walk fueled by fatty acids takes too much time and releases too many stress hormones to be efficient.
The role of L-carnitine is to activate the processes the normally take place during low-intensity exercise even in mid- and high-intensity exercise. Bringing closer the two seemingly different metabolisms makes it easier to get energy and oxidize the desired sources, such as fats.
What's the best L-carnitine dose?
To activate the best effect of L-carnitine and boost your metabolism to burn fat during low- and mid-intensity exercise, you don't have to consume excessive doses of 5 grams or more.
We recommend to intake 1000 mg of L-carnitine per day in a single dose. We also recommend to use L-carnitine tartrate, the form of L-carnitine with highest absorption rates.
Burn fat while eating sugar?
Seems like a shocking paradox, but L-carnitine is efficient in burning fat only if you consume sufficient quantities of sugar aka carbohydrates.
Consuming carbohydrates during exercise allows you to preserve glycogen stores and slow down the release of the stress hormone cortisol, which is essential to protect and grow muscle mass.
L-carnitine, on the other hand, stimulates oxidation of fat even during high-intensity exercise. This is why in combination with carbohydrates it allows you to preserve glycogen stores and utilize fatty acids as a source of energy.
For this reason, L-carnitine supplements are useful primarily to high-intensity athletes who value performance more than weight loss. In fact, L-carnitine provides several benefits during intense exercise.
- Reduces heart rate
- Increases power
- Increases time to exhaustion
- Reduces stress hormones
- Improves hormonal balance
A study performed by the University of Nottingham among athletes who were taking a combination of L-carnitine and carbohydrates showed improvements in many areas:
- A 55% reduction of muscle glycogen consumption at 50% VO2 max and a 38% reduction at 80% VO2 max.
- Improved energy efficiency within the anaerobic zone thanks to an additional source of fats.
- Increased consumption of fatty acids close to the lactate threshold, resulting in improved body composition.
- Reduction of lactate.
- Physical ability increased by 21%.
- Reduction of subjective sensation of fatigue.
The benefits of the energy gel with L-carnitine
The Energy Gel with L-Carnitine 4Endurance Pro contains 1.2 grams of L-carnitine and 22 grams of carbohydrates per gel.
Consuming L-carnitine in combination with carbohydrates allows you to burn fatty acids even at a high pulse when normally you would only oxidize glycogen.
Reducing the accumulation of lactic acid and increasing the lactate threshold reduces fatigue levels and your muscles will be less acidic and sore.
Our energy gel with L-carnitine also contains 25 mg of green tea polyphenols per gel. Green tea polyphenols induce thermogenesis and stimulate the oxidation of fat in your body, which further increases your ability to transform fat into energy.
If you want to make use of the combination of L-carnitine and carbohydrates during exercise to transform fat into energy, check out our Energy Gel with L-Carnitine 4Endurance Pro!