The Effects of Carnitine Supplementation on Performance

Duration of

Reference

Subjects

Carnitine Dosage

Treatment

50

6 racewalkers

4

g, orally

14 days

57

3 M/6 F

2

g, orally

14 days

60

10 M

2

g, orally

28 days

47

7 M

5

g, orally

5 days

61

9 M/1 F

2

g, orally

28 days

62, 63

10 M

2

g, orally

1 h pre-exercise

64

9 M

3

g, orally

7 days

65

12 M

3

g, IV

40 min pre-exercise

66

20 M

2

g, 2 times/day, orally

7 days

41

8 M

6

g, orally

7-14 days

Dependent Variables

Effects of Carnitine

V02, VC02, RER, BLa-, plasma glucose FFA, V02

RER, RPE, BLa-, HR, fat oxidation V02, VC02, substrate oxidation Swim performance, BLa-RER, FFA, V02

f V02 max, no change, BLa-, RER No change

No effect of carnitine No effect of carnitine J, RER, no other changes t V02 max, I BLa-No effect of carnitine No change during exercise No effect of carnitine No effect of carnitine however, is another issue. L-carnitine is very well tolerated, and there seems to be no toxicity and very few side effects even when taken in doses as large as 15 g/day.288081 The problem remains that even with supplementation there is not enough unequivocal evidence to support a necessity for supplementation. The vast majority of the research reveals no benefit to enhancing performance as a result of increased carnitine supplementation. In general, proper training and genetic endowment lead to athletic success, not supplementation, whether it be carnitine or any other sup-plement.79 Despite the vast amount of literature on supplementation, it is still prominent to "prescribe" or recommend supplements as a way of enhancing performance.

In conclusion, the majority of studies reveal that carnitine supplementation does not seem to provide an ergogenic benefit to human performance. The body and diet are sufficient to provide enough carnitine to allow an individual to effectively regulate lipid metabolism both at rest and during various types of exercise.

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