L-carnitine is an amino acid that is essential for turning fat into energy in our body. Each cell in the human body has mitochondria, which produce energy. If a cell’s mitochondria are not performing properly, then that cell cannot perform its function. If your child is low on l-carnitine, then it’s almost certain that their mitochondria are not performing as they should. So supplementing with l-carnitine when necessary can address a host of troublesome autism symptoms by improving cellular function.
But that’s not the only benefit of l-carnitine! Here are some others:
- Protects cell membranes
- Improves nitric oxide function (important for cardiovascular health)
What Form of Carnitine to Use
I use two main forms of carnitine:
- L-Carnitine. I tend to use this when brain function is not a primary concern.
- Acetyl L-Carnitine. This much more readily crosses the blood-brain barrier, so it can more easily have an impact on brain function. Given the most common symptoms of autism, I use this more frequently when working with autistic kids.
In my experience, both l-carnitine and acetyl l-carnitine are very safe to use and can help address a number of symptoms, including:
- Poor mitochondrial function
- Speech delays
- Low muscle tone
L-carnitine can be a key piece of the puzzle in helping your autistic child! My Fullscript dispensary includes my favorite sources of l-carnitine.
Be gentle with yourself. You’re doing a great job.
I hope this information has been helpful to you as part of creating Your Autism Game Plan.
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