L-Carnitine and the Ketogenic Lifestyle

Carnitine or L-Carnitine is naturally produced in the body but is also accessible in small doses by consuming meats, fish, and milk. It is commonly included as an ingredient in many supplements and/or is available as a stand-alone product.

The brand I use is Beyond Chemistry Labs L-Carnitine, which is available in powder.

However, I also sourced out a liquid format — Body Energy Club Liquid L-Carnitine — which I am looking forward to trying soon.

Supplementing with L-Carnitine

Primarily stored in the muscles, with trace amount present in the liver and blood, L-Carnitine plays a critical role in boosting your metabolism by improving mitochondrial function and increasing cellular energy, which means burning fat by converting it into energy.  From what I have researched, the levels to which it is produced naturally fluctuate due to the state of your body’s overall constitution suggesting that supplementing with a quality L-Carnitine product is beneficial to generate sufficient amounts.

L-Carnitine is also used in a supplementary form as it offers various other health benefits.  For example, research indicates that L-Carnitine may play a role in reversing the decline in brain function associated with Alzheimer’s, addictions and other brain diseases.  And other studies demonstrate that it may have a positive impact on symptoms related to heart disease and type 2 diabetes.

From what I have been reading, supplementing with L-Carnitine is also quite popular for enhancing sports performance as it is has been shown to increase oxygen supply to the muscles, increase blood flow, and reduce recovery time inclusive of the reduction of muscle fatigue and soreness.

In reference to the ketogenic lifestyle, L-Carnitine is commonly recommended as a staple supplement primarily to assist in producing higher levels of your body’s Carnitine storage.  Because a ketogenic diet encourages high fat intake, more fatty acids need to be transported into the mitochondria for oxidation — which in turn increases the risk of Carnitine depletion.

L-Carnitine helps to promote a higher metabolic rate while promoting fat burning. Regular supplementing also encourages entering a ketogenic state faster due to its assisting in burning stored carbohydrates.

L-Carnitine is said to be particularly important for those just starting the ketogenic diet.  To enter ketosis you are basically “training” your body to burn fat instead of carbs. During this “fat adaptation” period your body’s Carnitine levels deplete rapidly, making supplementing quite important.  If Carnitine is deficient, it will be difficult to achieve adequate ketosis on the ketogenic diet, and due to impaired ketone body synthesis.

Although your body will eventually naturally balance out Carnitine levels, continuing to supplement with an L-Carnitine product will accelerate your fat-burning encouraging consistent weight loss.

How to Take L-Carnitine?

As state above, I use Beyond Chemistry Labs L-Carnitine Their recommended dosage is 2.93 grams per 250 ml of water or beverage of your choice.  I typically add one scoop to my “Super Food Potion” in the morning, which typically consists of collagen peptides, spirulina, turmeric, Calm Magnesium Citrate, flaxseed oil, a little bit of “this and that” (depending on my mood) — combined with protein powder.

Note however that while researching L-Carnitine, I have found varying opinions on whether this supplement should be taken with or without food and the best time to consume it.  From what I am understanding, these factors depend on your end goals.  It seems that for weight loss it is best injected in the morning, however, if you are on the path to beef up your bod, it is popular as a post-workout blast of energy.  And so, I am just going to leave this up to you to do a little reading for yourself.

I am using L-carnitine for weight loss and mental clarity.  As far as the weight loss, I cannot comment as I am currently nowhere near my goal-weight and am just starting to get my ketogenic “groove” on.

As far as clarity, I have noticed a huge difference.  As an event coordinator, I naturally have beyond average clarity, however, I experience both physical and mental fatigue due to working long hours.  Originally it was suggested that I consume L-Carnitine in the afternoon to give me an energy boost.  Now although L-Carnitine does not have a “caffeine-spike” effect, I suspect that it was adding to my head racing while trying to sleep, so I moved it to my morning regime.

PRODUCT REVIEW:  Beyond Chemistry Labs L-Carnitine is a fantastic product and priced right for “Lab-Grade” quality.  This brand has a very distinctive citrus flavor to it — and I am not sure if that is typical of L-Carnitine, but suspect so because Beyond Chemistry Labs L-Carnitine is ingredients consist of 100% L-Carnitine.  With that said, I have noticed that it adds to the flavor of my “Super Food Potion”, so do not recommend in coffee, as others suggest.

In Closing

I highly recommend L-Carnitine as a staple supplement on your ketogenic journey.