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L-Carnitine May Protect Mitochondrial Function in Liver

This may not be exciting news for my American readers, where L-carnitine has been legal for years, but in Canada, our regulations for Natural Health Products has just made L-carnitine legal for sale OTC. This is great news for Canadians since L-carnitine has so many therapeutic benefits. It's especially important to the mitochondria, and while it's not mentioned in the video I share with you today, it is a part of meat, which is our main source of this wonderful amino acid.

To commemorate this great news, the next few posts I'll be publishing will be on recent studies on L-carnitine.

In this first study I'll cover, authors examined the preventive and therapeutic effect of L-carnitine (LC) on non-alcoholic fatty liver disease type 2 diabetic mice. The mice were randomly divided into five groups: control group, diabetic group, pre-treatment group (125 mg/kg BW), low-dose (125 mg/kg BW) therapeutic group and high-dose (250 mg/kg BW) therapeutic group.

LC and ALC (acetyl L-carnitine) concentrations in the liver were determined by high-performance liquid chromatography (HPLC). Liver weight, insulin levels and free fatty acid (FFA) and triglyceride (TG) levels in the liver and plasma were measured. Researchers found average liver LC and ALC levels were 33.7% and 20% lower, respectively, in diabetic mice compared to control mice.

After preventive and therapeutic treatment with LC, less hepatocyte steatosis (fatty liver cells), clearer crista and fewer glycogen granules in the mitochondria were observed. Decreased liver weight, TG levels, and FFA concentrations in the liver were observed after treatment with LC in diabetic mice.

Researchers assert that LC supplements ameliorated fatty liver in type 2 diabetic mice by increasing fatty acid oxidation and may protect mitochondrial function in liver.

Source: L-carnitine ameliorated fatty liver in high-calorie diet/STZ-induced type 2 diabetic mice by improving mitochondrial function (full-text)

Subscribers or regular readers of my blog may remember I covered another study on L-carnitine a couple months ago--this one being for autism spectrum disorders.

I see L-carnitine being almost as great therapeutically as CoQ10/ubiquinol. In fact, the combination of CoQ10 with L-carnitine makes a LOT of sense and the combination has been clinically shown to offer significant benefits.

An early Christmas present from Health Canada to all Canadians.

Other related posts on L-carnitine:

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