L-carnitine is an endogenous molecule that helps transport fatty acids needed by the cells of the body for energy generation. It is a vital component of the general energy formation process and helps keep the body working efficiently.
The L-carnitine statistics found in this article show that the substance is used to produce food, pharmaceuticals, nutraceuticals, and animal feed. The widespread use has inadvertently transformed the L-carnitine market into a multimillion-dollar industry.
Keep reading to find out more about this incredible substance, its potential side effects, the L-carnitine industry, etc.
Top 10 L-Carnitine Statistics and Facts
- The body naturally produces L-carnitine.
- There are two types of carnitine deficiency.
- Healthy children and adults don’t need to supplement with carnitine.
- L-carnitine is the most common form of carnitine.
- L-carnitine could be helpful for individuals with hepatic encephalopathy.
- L-carnitine supplement may help treat type 2 diabetes mellitus.
- The global L-carnitine market size could reach $233.8 million by 2025.
- Pregnant and breastfeeding mothers are advised to steer clear from L-carnitine.
- L-carnitine can help treat dilated cardiomyopathy.
- The Asia-Pacific L-Carnitine market could rise to $55.1 million by 2027.
General L-Carnitine Facts
L-carnitine is an amino acid synthesized in vivo from methionine and lysine. This molecule is found in almost every cell in the body and offers many benefits to the human body.
Read on and find out what L-carnitine is, why it’s important, where to find it, etc.
1. The body naturally produces L-carnitine.
Carnitine is a substance found in animals, plants, and bacteria, and it’s formed from amino acids found in the body.
One of the interesting facts about L-carnitine is that it is one of the two isomers of carnitine. D-carnitine is the other one.
D-carnitine is toxic and biologically inactive in the body. Conversely, L-carnitine is the active form of carnitine, and it’s responsible for all carnitine functions in the body.
2. L-carnitine assists in the breakdown of fatty acids in the body.
Carnitine helps transport fatty acids into the mitochondria. Here, they are broken down to produce the energy needed for our daily tasks. A
L-carnitine also has health benefits in managing heart and brain complications and in building muscle functions, as revealed by the facts about L-carnitine.
3. L-carnitine is produced in the body by the liver and kidneys.
The amino acids L-lysine and L-methionine are the two starting materials for the synthesis of L-carnitine.
The L-carnitine supplement facts reveal that the substance can be stored in the kidneys for later use and eliminated through the urine when found in excess.
4. Vegans and people with certain health conditions may have difficulty producing enough L-carnitine.
According to the L-carnitine statistics, people with health concerns (like kidney failure) may struggle to produce enough L-carnitine for proper functioning.
Aside from the quantity produced by the body naturally, L-carnitine can also be obtained in small amounts by consuming animal products like meat or fish. Hence, vegans may struggle to meet the body’s need for the substance.
5. L-carnitine can be consumed as a supplement.
L-carnitine is produced and consumed as a supplement due to its numerous health benefits.
Naturally, our body can produce all the carnitine that we need daily. However, as we age or our health declines, it may become necessary to think about L-carnitine supplement usage.
6. L-carnitine is stored in the brain, heart, and skeletal muscles.
L-carnitine is stored in various parts of the body, such as the brain, heart, skeletal muscle, sperm, liver, and blood.
The L-carnitine stats show that about 95% of the body’s L-carnitine is stored in the heart and skeletal muscles due to the high demand for fatty acid as their primary fuel.
7. L-carnitine can be found in some of our daily meals.
Our body indeed produces L-carnitine naturally, but it can also be obtained from some of our daily foods, such as red meat, fish, poultry, beef, pork, etc.
The majority of the L-carnitine supplement statistics show that daily consumption of red meat and other animal products will yield about 60-180 mg of L-carnitine.
Conversely, those who don’t consume animal products are most likely to have access to a meager 10-12 mg of L-carnitine (far less than what the body needs).
8. There are two types of carnitine deficiency.
(National Institute of Health)
They’re primary and secondary carnitine deficiency.
Primary carnitine deficiency is a genetic disorder affecting carnitine’s cellular transport. It usually manifests by the age of five and is characterized by musculoskeletal weakness, cardiomyopathy, and hypoglycemia.
Secondary carnitine deficiency occurs due to health conditions such as chronic renal failure or antibiotics that decrease L-carnitine use by the body, its absorption, and secretion.
9. Healthy children and adults don’t need to supplement with carnitine.
Their kidneys and liver produce sufficient amounts of carnitine from methionine and lysine, so there’s no need for introducing additional carnitine-rich food or supplements.
L-Carnitine Supplement Types and Their Uses
Not everyone’s body can synthesize and metabolize adequate amounts of L-carnitine. In that case, the use of carnitine supplements and L-carnitine foods becomes paramount.
This section will provide helpful facts on carnitine supplements, their types, and their most common uses.
10. Acetyl-L-carnitine is the most effective carnitine type in the prevention of brain damage and other related diseases.
Acetyl-L-carnitine (ALCAR) is a form of L-carnitine that has exhibited health benefits in treating neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s disease.
The statistics on the acetyl-L-carnitine and its benefits show that the substance may improve blood sugar levels in people with diabetes. Reports go further to inform us that both acetyl-L-carnitine and L-carnitine are the most common carnitine forms.
11. Propionyl L-carnitine can help treat heart-related problems.
Propionyl-L-carnitine is another form of L-carnitine taken as a supplement to help manage peripheral vascular diseases (such as stroke, heart attack, etc.) and blood pressure issues.
The L-carnitine statistics show that propionyl L-carnitine can increase nitric oxide levels in the body, improving blood flow in people with high blood pressure.
12. L-carnitine tartrate helps to reduce recovery time when exercising.
According to the statistics on L-carnitine tartrate and its benefits, this is another form of L-carnitine found in supplements. Its high absorption rate makes it ideal for athletes, who use it to aid muscle growth, reduce muscle soreness, and enhance recovery time after intense workouts.
13. D-carnitine can cause L-carnitine deficiency in the body.
According to the L-carnitine nutrition facts, D-carnitine is another form of carnitine (not a type of L-carnitine) found in the body and is biologically inactive.
D-carnitine is considered toxic and may cause the deficiency of L-carnitine and its other useful forms in the body. This is due to its ability to inhibit L-carnitine’s absorption and functionality in the body.
14. L-carnitine is the most common form of carnitine.
(Healthline, Medical News Today)
Other forms include acetyl-L-carnitine, propionyl-L-carnitine, L-carnitine L-tartrate, and D-carnitine.
Here are some exciting facts other carnitine forms used for supplementation purposes:
- Acetyl-L-carnitine is the best for brain health
- Propionyl-L-carnitine is effective against cardiovascular issues
- L-carnitine L-tartrate is often added to sports supplements to improve workout performance
15. L-carnitine supplement may help treat type 2 diabetes mellitus.
(Oregon State University)
L-carnitine use can improve glucose tolerance and insulin resistance in type 2 diabetes mellitus patients.
L-carnitine stimulates the breakdown of long-chain fatty acids, which play a role in inciting insulin resistance. Additionally, it decreases the concentration of acyl-CoA by stimulating glucose uptake and utilization.
L-Carnitine Supplement Use: Statistics and Facts
Supplements containing this compound have a variety of uses. For example, supplemental L-carnitine quickly gives weight loss results, improves glucose tolerance, and performs an array of other incredible metabolic functions.
Let’s go through the most compelling L-carnitine use statistics and facts below.
16. Food sources of L-carnitine have a better absorption rate in the body when compared to supplements.
Taking an L-carnitine supplement has fewer benefits than consuming it through food when it has a 57–84% absorption rate. Conversely, the same figure is 14-18% for L-carnitine derived from supplements.
17. On average, the RDI for L-carnitine is between 500-2000 mg.
The L-carnitine dosage statistics show that the RDI of L-carnitine may vary depending on the type of supplement. However, past research results using the various L-carnitine forms show that anywhere between 500–2000 mg is ideal and safe for consumption.
For acetyl-L-carnitine, L-carnitine-tartrate, and propionyl-L-carnitine, the RDIs are 600–2,500 mg, 1,000–4,000 mg, and 400–1,000 mg, respectively.
18. L-carnitine has sexual benefits and is known to enhance male fertility.
In a nine-month study involving 30 men suffering from low sperm motility, it was discovered that the use of L-carnitine improved sperm movement and overall sperm count.
Every day for the first three months, these 30 men were administered a placebo. The L-carnitine was administered every day for another three months. The last stage saw the men take no medication for the remaining three months.
Based on the results, sperm motility had a noticeable improvement when the men took L-carnitine exclusively.
19. The L-carnitine facts reveal that the substance can increase the chances of conception in women suffering from polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS).
(Mayo Clinic, WebMD)
PCOS is a hormonal disorder that causes enlargement of the ovaries, leading to irregular, infrequent, and prolonged menstrual periods in women.
There’s no cure for PCOS. However, L-carnitine use can help increase ovulation, increasing the chances of getting pregnant.
20. The use of L-carnitine can help reduce swelling in the liver caused by hepatitis.
According to the L-carnitine statistics, a deficiency in L-carnitine has been associated with the development of liver cirrhosis or inflammation of the liver, also known as liver swelling.
However, both hepatitis B and C can also cause liver swelling. Treatment with L-carnitine supplement has shown positive signs in improving body metabolism, reducing fatigue, and improving liver function.
21. The use of L-carnitine may interact with the drug Coumadin.
Warfarin (Coumadin) is a drug used by people with blood clotting disorders to slow their blood clotting process. Those taking warfarin should limit L-carnitine use, as the substance may increase the effects of warfarin in the body, causing internal bleeding.
If, for any reason, you need to use both Coumadin and L-carnitine at the same time, do check with your health professional to know the right dosage at every point in time.
22. L-carnitine can help treat dilated cardiomyopathy.
(National Library of Medicine)
Research shows that L-carnitine can find use in dilated cardiomyopathy treatment due to its ability to mediate the use of glucose and fatty acids in the myocardium.
23. L-carnitine could be helpful for individuals with hepatic encephalopathy.
(Oregon State University)
Hepatic encephalopathy occurs due to the accumulation of ammonia in the bloodstream resulting from the liver’s inability to filter this and other neurotoxic substances. The symptoms include drowsiness, behavioral changes, disorientation, coma, etc.
A 2019 review examining 398 participants revealed that long-term use of L-carnitine, that is, acetyl-L-carnitine, can improve the state of hepatic encephalopathy patients.
Namely, taking 4 g of acetyl-L-carnitine (ALCAR) a day orally or intravenously for 90 days can significantly reduce blood ammonia levels.
However, more extensive research on the effects of ALCAR on hepatic encephalopathy is required to determine whether to use l-carnitine for it and when to take it.
24. Pregnant and breastfeeding mothers are advised to steer clear from L-carnitine.
Currently, there isn’t enough reliable research or information to ascertain if the use of L-carnitine may or may not benefit pregnant and breastfeeding mothers.
Although the substance has been used by children up to 6 months old without any noticeable side effects, both pregnant and breastfeeding mothers should steer clear of its use to be on the safe side.
L-Carnitine Benefits: Statistics and Facts
The many benefits of carnitine make this compound one of the most valuable amino acids in the body. It offers a range of benefits—from fat-burning to age-related memory decline prevention.
Let’s explore them all!
25. L-carnitine may help overweight people lose weight.
According to research, L-carnitine has benefits to weight loss.
An L-carnitine supplement coupled with intense exercising can help reduce the body mass index (BMI) for people with excess body weight.
26. L-carnitine has found use in the management of heart-related conditions.
The study was carried out on 3,600 cardiac patients. L-carnitine has been found to improve metabolic heart function by restoring myocardial-L-carnitine to its optimal level in cardiac patients.
The L-carnitine supplement usage by the study participants contributed to the reduction in death rates caused by ventricular arrhythmias (65%), angina (40%), and various heart conditions (27%).
27. L-carnitine can help improve exercise performance.
Research on the L-carnitine benefits for bodybuilding shows that the regular intake of the substance can help reduce the buildup of lactic acid in the body (which happens to be among the primary causes of fatigue during intense workout situations).
L-carnitine’s natural ability to escort metabolic waste out of cells also helps to prevent waste accumulation in the body during exercise. This, in turn, increases output energy and enhances recovery time.
28. L-carnitine can help reduce symptoms of diabetes.
Research on L-carnitine supplements has shown that L-carnitine levels in type 2 diabetes patients are always low. However, supplementing L-carnitine can help reduce the blood sugar levels of diabetic patients.
Also, the production of the activated protein kinase (AMPK) enzyme is increased. This enzyme helps to improve insulin function in the body. All of this helps minimize the risk of developing diabetes.
29. L-carnitine is used for treating acne.
(WebMD, Mayo Clinic)
Acne is caused by the mixture of dead skin cells and the skin’s oil content known as sebum. An over-secretion of sebum in the body increases the chances of developing acne, one of the many L-carnitine benefits for the skin.
Due to its ability to control lipid metabolism and its hydrating effects, L-carnitine is often added to skincare products. Here, they help minimize the over secretion of sebum in the skin, promoting less oily skin and treating acne.
30. L-carnitine can help reduce the after-effects of cancer treatment.
(MedicalNewsToday, Cedars Sinai)
The L-carnitine supplement statistics show that cancer treatments (such as radiation and chemotherapy) are rigorous processes that can sometimes damage parts of the body (such as the L-carnitine system).
When something damages the L-carnitine system, the body cannot properly metabolize fatty acids, leading to fatigue. In such a case, supplementing with L-carnitine can help the body regain energy, reducing symptoms of fatigue and weakness.
Statistics on the L-Carnitine Supplement Market Size
As more individuals continue to develop an awareness of the numerous clinical benefits of L-carnitine, the market size of L-carnitine keeps expanding. This is reflected in the undeniable surge in L-carnitine supplement sales.
The following statistics reveal everything you need to know about the current state of the L-carnitine market.
31. According to L-carnitine statistics for 2021, the L-carnitine market is worth $194 million.
(Grand View Research, MarketWatch)
The current value is significantly lower than the one in 2020 when the L-carnitine market was valued at $294.2 million.
32. The global L-carnitine market size could reach $233.8 million by 2025.
(PR Newswire, Grand View Research)
The global L-carnitine market size was estimated at $168.2 million in 2018 and has been growing at a 4.8% CAGR ever since.
Some of the major factors driving this market’s growth are consumer inclination toward preventive healthcare and the growing health concerns amongst the elderly.
Other reasons include growing consumer awareness regarding the L-carnitine benefits and the increasing demand from end-users.
33. North America is the region with the highest use of L-carnitine in the pharmaceutical sector.
(PR Newswire, Grand View Research)
The presence of the pharmaceutical sectors of Mexico and Canada drives the L-carnitine market growth in North America. The US alone accounts for over 45% of the global pharmaceutical industry’s revenue share.
Moreover, the North American region’s growing health concerns and aging population also help drive its L-carnitine supplement market growth.
34. The global feed grade market for L-carnitine is valued at $38 million.
This figure is expected to hit $54 million in 2026, growing at a CAGR of 5% between 2021–2026.
Due to the numerous health benefits and applications of L-carnitine and its derivatives, the substance is included in various L-carnitine supplement products, including health supplements, medications, animal feed, functional drinks, etc.
35. The Asia-Pacific L-Carnitine market could rise to $55.1 million by 2027.
(Globe News Wire, Business Wire)
In 2018, the Asia Pacific L-carnitine market was valued at $35.4 million. It’s projected to reach $55.1 million by 2027, growing at a CAGR of 5.% within the forecast period of 2019–2027.
According to the L-carnitine sales statistics, countries like China have a vast potential market for healthy foods. As such, the market outlook for L-carnitine is only going to improve further in the coming years.
What are the benefits of L-carnitine?
The benefits of L-carnitine include the following:
- Weight loss
- Reduction in the decline in brain function due to aging
- Management of heart-related conditions
- Improvement of exercise performance
- Reduction of diabetes symptoms
- Treatment of acne
- Reduction of the after-effects of cancer treatment
Is L-carnitine really effective?
This depends on what you are using it for. For obese individuals trying to lose weight, a moderate L-carnitine supplement use coupled with rigorous exercising can help you lose a few pounds.
If you are fresh out of chemotherapy and always feeling fatigued, the use of L-carnitine can help you regain strength. For individuals with liver swelling due to L-carnitine deficiency, the use of L-carnitine supplements can help stop the inflammation in the liver.
How much L-carnitine should I take for weight loss?
On average, L-carnitine doses between 500–2000 mg have shown immense benefits without any problematic side effects.
However, the proper L-carnitine dosage depends on what form of L-carnitine you wish to use and the ailment you want to treat.
What does L-carnitine do to your body?
L-carnitine helps the body produce energy. It does this by transporting fatty acids found in the blood to the mitochondria of every cell. Here, they can be adequately broken down to release the energy needed by the body for daily tasks.
L-carnitine also helps transport waste materials from the cells to prevent their accumulation, which can be detrimental to cell health.
Is L-carnitine bad for your heart?
Not at all. According to research, a daily intake of L-carnitine supplements can help minimize your chances of developing heart diseases such as fatal arrhythmias or angina.
L-carnitine plays a vital role in the body’s energy creation process, as shown by the L-carnitine statistics and facts presented in this article. Its ability to transport fatty acids in the body down to the mitochondria of cells for proper breakdown helps keep the body’s cells working all day efficiently, providing us with the energy needed to perform our daily tasks.
There are no significant L-carnitine side effects when used in treating various health issues. However, pregnant and breastfeeding mothers are advised to steer clear off L-carnitine supplements. This is because there isn’t enough information to determine if their consumption is safe for both mothers and children.