23 Feb 2022

What Does Acetyl L Carnitine Do?

Acetyl L Carnitine is a naturally synthesised amino acid and plays a great role in turning fat into energy. Apart from efficient fat metabolism, this natural compound also promotes heart health, optimum brain activity, and muscular functioning. Its chief function in the body is to efficiently transport fatty acids into the cells, particularly mitochondria to generate energy using these fatty acids/triglycerides as fuel.

What Makes Acetyl L Carnitine A Conditionally Essential Amino Acid?


It was first discovered in the year 1905. It is the metabolic derivative of two amino acids, i.e. Methionine and Lysine. Around 80% of the amino acids that our body requires for a healthy survival are synthesised within, and the rest of 20% are called essential amino acids. The term “essential” refers to those proteins that our body cannot synthesise. Hence, these proteins have to be consumed from external sources i.e. food or natural dietary supplements. A matter of fact is that Acetyl L-carnitine is produced from two essential amino acids, so it falls under the category of “conditionally essential amino acid”. 

What Is ALC’s Cycle Of Action?

This amino acid-based compound is mainly synthesised in the liver as well as the kidneys in some amount.  After getting produced or procured externally from the diet, it is transported to various structures of the body like the heart and skeletal muscle tissues that use triglycerides or fatty acids as the main fuel to source energy. In these body areas, it helps in directing the required amount of fats into the cell mitochondria via bloodstream to generate cellular energy.  Acetyl L Carnitine initiates this energy production process via beta-oxidation or metabolism of long-chain fatty acids or triglycerides. It also helps in regulating muscle contractions, maintenance of protein balance, and heart tissue health.

How Does Acetyl L Carnitine Support Weight Loss?

Supplementing this natural compound enhances our affinity to utilise fatty acids or triglycerides as an energy source more than carbohydrates. Therefore, by burning long-chain fatty acids, our body spares glycogen for other body processes/functions. This shows that this biochemical compound allows our body to burn fat and save glycogen (carbohydrate or polysaccharide) which ultimately boosts our stamina as well as endurance. By providing more fat as fuel to the muscles, ALC makes accessible an otherwise nearly unavailable but substantial source of energy.

This conditionally essential amino acid may help in treating many other health conditions naturally as it is a potent antioxidant also. The main role of antioxidants is to neutralise and stabilise the harmful negatively charged free radicals which may damage cell walls and nuclear/mitochondrial DNA. By reducing muscle fatigue caused by free radicals that were generated during physically exertive activities, ALC also facilitates speedy post work-out muscle recovery. Various studies suggest that ALC may help in preventing various cardiac conditions, diabetes, claudication, certain  neuropathies, hyperthyroidism, and Alzheimer’s disease.

Best Time To Consume Acetyl L Carnitine

ALC’s dose recommendations vary depending on the age, gender, person’s general health condition, and athletic regimen program chosen for weight loss. The dose usually ranges between 1-3 grams per day. Furthermore, it should be consumed empty stomach, around 30 minutes before any meal or as a pre-workout supplement for best weight loss results.  

It is said that during workouts that require high energy output, the Acetyl L carnitine levels get exhausted. By supplementing it via natural dietary supplements, your body can revitalise and more actively utilise the stored fat for energy, thereby resulting in higher energy output and enhanced fat loss.