Men, are you concerned about your sperm health? Have you learned you have male-factor infertility, low sperm count or impaired sperm motility? Are you perhaps older, or battling a health issue that could be impacting your fertility health and conception efforts? L-Carnitine may be worth learning more about and discussing with your doctor.
L-Carnitine is a nutrient the body needs in order to properly turn fat into energy at a cellular level. The liver and kidneys naturally make L-Carnitine and the body stores it in various places, including in sperm. Its benefits span way beyond fertility health but, because researchers know that L-Carnitine is stored in the sperm and organs that indirectly impact fertility (heart, brain, and skeletal muscles), our focus is to share the ability of L-Carnitine to support male fertility health, particularly sperm health.
1. L-Carnitine is a potent antioxidant that can help to protect sperm from free radical damage which harms healthy sperm, interferes with healthy DNA, and can make conception challenging.
2. L-Carnitine is an amino acid responsible for shuttling omega fatty acids into the cells where they are burned for energy; this includes the sperm cell.
3. L-Carnitine improves fatty acid utilization, which is extremely important for sperm membrane health.
4. L-Carnitine has been shown to help normalize sperm motility in men with low sperm quality.
5. L-Carnitine helps increase sperm count – Research shows that the amount of free carnitine in seminal fluid (semen) directly correlates to sperm count and motility.
6. L-Carnitine is hepatoprotective, meaning it supports liver health for improved hormone metabolism.
7. L-Carnitine has been shown to improve sexual function, mood, and energy in aging men.
8. L-Carnitine, in combination with CoQ10 supplementation, has been shown to enhance cellular health and fertility longevity.
9. L-Carnitine may prevent abnormal sperm cells from regenerating.
10. L-Carnitine may help reduce symptoms of an overactive thyroid (hyperthyroid), suggests some research (supplementation for thyroid health is not suggested without a doctor’s guidance).
Fortify Your Diet With L-Carnitine
We suggest a dietary approach to fortifying nutrient stores first. The Male Fertility Diet should include many foods rich in L-Carnitine – lean beef (a 4oz. steak) or ground beef, fish (Cod), poultry (chicken breast) and dairy products (full fat, raw or organic are best), nuts, seeds, and vegetables like artichokes, asparagus, beet greens, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, collard greens, garlic, mustard greens, okra, and parsley.
For extra sperm-health support, learn more about herbs and nutritional supplements to help support normal sperm health, count, and motility…
The average suggested daily amount of L-Carnitine is around 500 mg a day. That said, each individual is different and the amount of L-Carnitine received through diet differs, so please consult your healthcare practitioner for help in determining a safe and effective dose for your needs.
We know that L-Carnitine is a necessary nutrient for optimal energy metabolism in sperm for sperm to function normally. Healthy sperm is ½ of every couple’s fertility equation! So, if male factor infertility and sperm health is a concern for you, you may want to include L-Carnitine in your natural fertility program.
- Barton-Schuster, D. (n.d.). The Importance of L-Carnitine to Sperm Health. Retrieved from: http://natural-fertility-info.com/l-carnitine.html
- Carnitine (L-carnitine). (2014). Retrieved from: http://accurateclinic.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/04/Carnitine-L-carnitine-University-of-Maryland-Medical-Center.pdf
- Lenzi et al. (2003). Use of carnitine therapy in selected cases of male factor infertility: a double-blind crossover trial. Fertil Steril. 2003 Feb;79 (2):292-300. Retrieved from: https://www.fertstert.org/article/S0015-0282(02)04679-4/fulltext
- Office of Dietary Supplements – Carnitine. (2013). Retrieved from: https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/Carnitine-HealthProfessional/