Do vegans need carnitine supplements?

carnitine for vegans

Vegans don’t need carnitine supplements, despite the fact, that there aren’t plant-based foods rich in carnitine. In fact, healthy people synthesize enough.

What does carnitine do to the body?

Carnitine plays a critical role in energy production. It burns body fat for energy. Hence, it’s believed to help obese people lose weight and improve sport performance. Carnitine is concentrated in the muscle tissue and the heart.

Healthy people produce enough carnitine. There is no need to consume foods rich in carnitine or take carnitine supplements.

Carnitine deficiency may happen only due to genetic disorder or certain disorders, such as chronic renal failure.[1]

Foods rich in carnitine

Actually, only foods from animal sources contain high amounts of carnitine. Meet, and dairy are the best sources. Adults who follow mixed diets can get about 60–180 mg of carnitine a day.

On the contrary, vegans get only about 10–12 mg of carnitine from food a day.

Are there vegan foods with carnitine?

In fact, vegan foods don’t contain any significant amounts of carnitine. For instance, 2 slices of whole-wheat bread contain only 0.2 mg and half a cup of asparagus contains only 0.1 mg of carnitine, respectively.

But, the body synthesizes carnitine from the amino acids, methionine and lysine. High amounts of vitamin C and vitamin B6 are necessary as well.[2]

Vegan foods with methionine boost carnitine synthesis

The richest vegan foods in methionine are rice (2.4g per 100g), corn (2.1g), wheat and oats (1.8g), sesame seeds (1.6g), rye and beans (1.5g), cauliflower (1.4g), Brazil nuts (1.1g). hemp seeds (0.9g), soy protein (0.8g), chia seeds (0.6g), peanuts (0.3g), chickpeas (0.25g), and almonds (0.15g).[3]

Eat a variety of these foods to help your body produce more carnitine.

Vegan foods with lysine for high carnitine levels

Actually, beans and legumes are the best plant-based sources of lysine. Soybeans, peas, lentils, kidney beans, chickpeas, and navy beans are pretty rich in lysine![4]

In fact, beans helps you lose weight. They regulate appetite, and they’re packed with vitamins and phytochemicals.

Vegans should eat foods with vitamin C & vitamin B6

Moreover, vegans should have high levels of vitamin C and B6 to synthesize enough carnitine.

Oranges, grapefruits, lemons, strawberries, kiwis, mango, papaya, pineapple, peppers, broccoli, and tomatoes are only a few common foods rich in vitamin C.

Pistachio nuts, sunflower seeds, chickpeas, hemp seeds, hazelnuts, walnuts, flaxseeds, peanuts, potatoes, bananas, and avocados are common plant-based foods rich in vitamin B6.

Additionally, consuming foods with vitamin C and vitamin B6 helps us lose weight.

Do vegans need carnitine supplements?

The human body synthesizes about 0.16 to 0.48 mg/kg of L-carnitine a day. So, healthy people synthesize about 11-34 mg of carnitine a day. Furthermore, kidneys reabsorbs about 95% of carnitine.

We actually synthesize enough carnitine. There is no need to eat foods with carnitine or take carnitine supplements. Even vegans, or people who follow a plant-based diet can produce enough carnitine!