Acetyl-l-carnitine – nootropic review of effects, dosage, and more braintropic

Acetyl-L-Carnitine, or ALCAR, is a form of the micronutrient L-carnitine, which is a derivative of the amino acid lysine. The body naturally produces L-carnitine, which can also be synthesized from animal proteins in the diet. While studies suggest that actual carnitine deficiency is relatively rare in healthy people with no metabolic disorders, supplementation has nonetheless proven to be of substantial benefit in many ways, from promoting heart health to enhancing brain function.

ALCAR is one of several forms of L-carnitine supplements, all of which have been extensively studied and shown to offer major physical and mental benefits. ALCAR, which is L-carnitine to which an acetyl group (-COCH3) has been added, is thought to be the most bioavailable form of L-carnitine. [1] Unlike other forms of L-carnitine, which help convert fat to energy in the body proper, ALCAR readily crosses the blood-brain barrier and acts within the brain itself.

Its primary actions are related to brain function.

ALCAR is effective in many respects when taken alone, but its nootropic properties are most pronounced when it is taken in combination with other nootropics. In many cases the combination of ALCAR with other nootropics is mutually potentiating, making all the compounds in the combination or stack work better and more efficiently than they would separately.

Other forms of L-carnitine supplements include L-carnitine L-tartrate (LCLT), typically used to enhance physical performance, and glycine propionyl L-carnitine (GPLC), which is primarily used to alleviate blood flow issues. The only L-carnitine variant that has nootropic capabilities, ALCAR provides both L-carnitine and acetyl groups, which are molecule clusters that may be used in the formation of the “learning neurotransmitter,” acetylcholine.

Because of its potent antioxidant properties, ALCAR acts as a neuroprotectant, preventing and even repairing damage caused by free radicals that scavenge and damage brain cells. [6] It also helps the brain rid itself of other toxins and is thought to reduce cell death due to excitotoxicity, a pathological process triggered by the overactivation of glutamate receptors. ALCAR improves the neural network by strengthening nerves and signal receptors and has even been shown to protect the brain against the harmful effects of drinking alcohol. [7] Potential Treatment for Age-related Disorders

One of ALCAR’s most exciting prospects is as a treatment for age-related neurological disorders, including Alzheimer’s Disease. It has been shown to effectively slow decline in Alzheimer’s patients and reduces age-related memory loss. [8] Other studies showed that ALCAR helps restore ambulatory capability in the aged and acts as a mood elevator and anti-depressant in the elderly. [9] Physical Health Benefits

ALCAR has excellent bioavailability and is readily absorbed by the gastrointestinal tract. Once absorbed its actions differ considerably from those of other forms of L-carnitine, which don’t cross the blood-brain barrier. The acetyl groups that make ALCAR unique enable it to cross the blood-brain barrier readily and rapidly, and ALCAR’s most important functions take place in the brain.

One of ALCAR’s most significant nootropic benefits involves the acetyl groups, which are thought to provide the basis for the synthesis of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine. Sometimes referred to as “the learning neurotransmitter,” acetylcholine is largely responsible for learning, memory, and cognitive function. Increased levels of acetylcholine are associated with enhanced cognitive abilities, and low levels of this important neurotransmitter increase the risk of neurological disorders like Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s diseases.

ALCAR has also been shown to increase levels of norepinephrine and serotonin, crucial neurotransmitters that play a major role in mood and brain function. [11] The ability to increase neurotransmitter production is one of the primary ways that ALCAR complements nootropics like the racetams, which enhance the action of neurotransmitter receptors in the brain.

Damaged fat cells known as lipofuscin – called “age spots” when they appear on the skin – also occur in the brain, and are strongly associated with age-related neurological disorders, loss of energy, and poor memory. By helping the brain eliminate these damaged cells, ALCAR both boosts brain function and significantly reduces the risk of neurodegenerative disorders. [13] It has also been shown to prevent brain deterioration during periods of stress. [14]

ALCAR works in the body as well as the brain, performing many of the same functions as L-carnitine. While the conversion of fat to energy isn’t one of ALCAR’s primary benefits, it does increase metabolic efficiency and provides many of the same energy-related benefits as other L-carnitine variants. ALCAR has also been shown to be particularly effective at reducing hypertension [16] and lowering insulin resistance. [17] Dosage

Recommendations for the daily dosage of ALCAR vary considerably, starting with 250-500 mg per day. A dose of 500 mg per day, taken all at once or split into smaller doses, is considered a good starting point for most healthy adults. From that point, dosage can be adjusted as needed to realize maximum results. The elderly may benefit from higher doses.

For peak daytime brain function, the initial dose of ALCAR should be taken in the morning, though some users say ALCAR works best when split into two or more doses taken at intervals throughout the day. Taking ALCAR late in the evening can result in disruption of the normal sleep cycle. ALCAR can be taken on an empty stomach, but users who experience gastrointestinal upset report that it can be minimized or avoided by taking ALCAR with food. Stacking

ALCAR’s effects are truly potentiated when combined with other nootropics. It is commonly included in stacks that feature nootropics in the racetam family, allowing them to each function to their fullest potential. Since ALCAR works in tandem with the acetylcholine system, it may also be a good idea to include a choline precursor, such as Alpha GPC, in your stack. ALCAR and Piracetam Stack