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What are the risks of taking acetyl-l-carnitine (ALC)?

ANSWER

People taking carnitine have reported a number of side effects, including:

  • Diarrhea, nausea, stomach pain, and vomiting
  • Headaches
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Higher blood pressure
  • Lower blood sugar and higher triglycerides (in people with diabetes)
  • Psychosis (in people with bipolar disorder)

From: Acetyl-L-Carnitine WebMD Medical Reference

SOURCES:

National Institutes of Health: "Dietary supplement fact sheet -- carnitine."

Natural Standard Bottom Line Monograph: "L-carnitine."

Alternative Medicine Review, April 1, 2010.

Mingorance, C. , March 28, 2011. Vascular Health and Risk Management

Natural Standard Professional Monograph: "L-carnitine."

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini on January 30, 2019

SOURCES:

National Institutes of Health: "Dietary supplement fact sheet -- carnitine."

Natural Standard Bottom Line Monograph: "L-carnitine."

Alternative Medicine Review, April 1, 2010.

Mingorance, C. , March 28, 2011. Vascular Health and Risk Management

Natural Standard Professional Monograph: "L-carnitine."

Reviewed by Melinda Ratini on January 30, 2019

NEXT QUESTION:

How can acetyl-l-carnitine (ALC) interact with other drugs?

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THIS TOOL DOES NOT PROVIDE MEDICAL ADVICE. It is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment and should not be relied on to make decisions about your health. Never ignore professional medical advice in seeking treatment because of something you have read on the WebMD Site. If you think you may have a medical emergency, immediately call your doctor or dial 911.

    This tool does not provide medical advice. See additional information.