Risks and benefits of carnitine supplementation in diabetes

M. Dambrova, E. Liepinsh

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

20 Citations (Scopus)


L-carnitine is a very popular food supplement due to its safety profile, antioxidant-type activity and suggested effects on energy metabolism pathways. L-carnitine participates in both fatty acid transport pathways and the export of acetyl groups out of the mitochondria. However, contradictory data exist concerning the pharmacological outcomes of L-carnitine treatment in diabetes mellitus, which is a highly prevalent metabolic disease characterised by hyperglycemia and associated with severe complications, including cardiovascular disease and dyslipidemia. Recently, the L-carnitine-derived metabolites, acylcarnitines and trimethylamine-N-oxide, have been associated with increased cardio-metabolic risks. This review aims to highlight the possible risks and benefits of L-carnitine supplementation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)95-100
Number of pages6
JournalExperimental and Clinical Endocrinology and Diabetes
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - Feb 2015
Externally publishedYes


  • diabetes
  • food supplement
  • L-carnitine

Field of Science*

  • 3.1 Basic medicine

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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