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L-carnitine for Hyperthyroidism

l-carnitine for hyperthyroidism


  DISCLAIMER: This article has been written for informational and educational purposes only and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment


People who have hyperthyroidism, or an overactive thyroid gland, generally experience excess levels of thyroid hormones that alter the body's metabolism and may cause a wide range of symptoms such as palpitations, shakiness, and unintentional weight loss. Studies suggest that administration of l-carnitine for hyperthyroidism can be beneficial to counteract the overactivity of these excess thyroid hormones and may help reduce symptoms in people with hyperthyroidism.  

In this article, we’ll discuss the effects of l-carnitine for hyperthyroidism that are backed by scientific evidence along with how to use it and possible side effects. But before we get into the benefits of l-carnitine for hyperthyroidism, it’s important to learn the basics of hyperthyroidism a little bit more. So, let’s get started.  

Table of contents 

  • What is hyperthyroidism? 
  • Symptoms of hyperthyroidism
  • Causes of hyperthyroidism 
  • Complications of hyperthyroidism
  • What is l-carnitine? 
  • What does l-carnitine do in the human body?
  • How l-carnitine can help with hyperthyroidism
  • How to use l-carnitine 
  • Precautions and side effects 
  • Final words 

What is hyperthyroidism? 

Hyperthyroidism is a medical condition in which your thyroid gland becomes overactive and produces too much hormones including T4 (thyroxine) and T3 (triiodothyronine). These large quantities of thyroid hormones increase the body’s metabolism function which causes several symptoms such as rapid or irregular heartbeat,  insomnia, increased body temperature, irritability, shakiness, and unintentional weight loss. 

Symptoms of hyperthyroidism

Hyperthyroidism may show up various signs and symptoms, such as: 

  • Rapid heartbeat, known as tachycardia 
  • Unintentional weight loss even if food intake increases 
  • Irregular heartbeat, known as arrhythmia 
  • Palpitations 
  • Irritability, nervousness, and anxiety
  • Shaking or trembling in hands and fingers 
  • Increased appetite 
  • Increased sensitivity to light and temperature 
  • Enlargement of the thyroid gland 
  • Sweating 
  • Trouble sleeping 
  • Brittle hair 
  • Changes in bowel patterns 
  • Changes in menstrual patterns 
  • Muscle weakness and fatigue 

Causes of hyperthyroidism 

A number of conditions might be involved in the development of hyperthyroidism, including: 

  • Thyroiditis, inflammation of the thyroid gland
  • Graves’ disease
  • Plummer’s disease 
  • Enlarged thyroid gland with thyroid tumor or hyperfunctioning nodules 

Complications of hyperthyroidism

Hyperthyroidism may lead to various mild to severe health complications, such as:

  • Fragile bones or osteoporosis
  • Cardiovascular issues including heart stroke and congestive heart failure 
  • Eye problems called Graves’ ophthalmopathy
  • Skin issues, also known as Graves’ dermopathy 
  • Thyrotoxic crisis, a medical emergency with intense hyperthyroidism symptoms  

What l-carnitine? 

L-carnitine is an ammonia-based organic compound that the human body produces in its liver and kidneys for transforming fats into energy. It’s stored in most tissues and biological fluids including the skeletal muscles, sperm, heart, and brain.

In general, the human body can produce enough l-carnitine it requires through diets, especially from protein foods like fish, meat, milk, eggs, and dairy products. However, some people may require l-carnitine supplements when their bodies fail to produce enough due to certain underlying issues such as angina or intermittent claudication. I-carnitine production can also be affected by certain medications as well. 

Besides, some people may also experience l-carnitine deficiency even though their bodies produce enough l-carnitine because they cannot transport it properly so it can be used to produce energy.  

What does l-carnitine do in the human body?

L-carnitine plays the primary role in metabolizing fat molecules in the body. It transports long-chain fat molecules (fatty acids) into energy-producing cells called mitochondria for energy production through beta-oxidation. L-carnitine can also regulate the metabolism process of coenzyme A.      

How l-carnitine can help with hyperthyroidism 

L-carnitine has a miraculous ability to block the effects of thyroid hormones and thus, can be used to counteract hyperthyroidism and its associated symptoms. It can prevent the absorption of different thyroid hormones such as T3 and T4 into the body cells and help reduce symptoms caused by the overactive thyroid or hyperthyroidism. 

 A 2005 study published in the Hormone and Metabolic Research showed that l-carnitine supplementation can inhibit the action of thyroid hormones in peripheral tissues and may help increase athletic performance when combined with physical exercise. 

Another study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism in 2001 concluded l-carnitine is effective in both preventing as well as reversing symptoms of hyperthyroidism and it can be of clinical use.   

How to use l-carnitine 

Dosages of l-carnitine supplements may vary depending on the symptoms and aims of use. L-carnitine powders are the most preferred supplementary forms available in the market. 

In general, doses range from 3 grams to 30 grams per day. These doses can be consumed in two to three divided doses. Most clinicians prefer l-carnitine supplements for taking in the morning or two to three hours prior to workouts. 

It’s recommended to consult with a qualified natural medicine practitioner before starting l-carnitine so that he or she can determine whether it’s right for you or what dosage would be the best for your specific condition. 

Precautions and side effects 

L-carnitine is generally found safe and well-tolerable in most adults. Common side effects of l-carnitine supplements may include gastrointestinal discomfort, rash, increased appetite, and body odor. These side effects are mild and not common for all. 

L-carnitine may interact with other supplements and medications such as diabetes medication and blood-thinning medications. Always talk to your doctor before taking l-carnitine supplements especially if you have the following conditions: 

  • Liver disease 
  • Diabetes 
  • High blood pressure 
  • Kidney disease 
  • Peripheral vascular disease 
  • History of seizures 

Final words 

L-carnitine has been found to have significant potential to reverse and prevent hyperthyroidism and its associated symptoms such as palpitation, rapid heartbeat, sweating, and unintentional weight loss. The benefits of l-carnitine for hyperthyroidism have been substantiated by several clinical studies. 

Recent studies showed that l-carnitine has the capacity to block the absorption of excess thyroid hormones and can help counteract hyperthyroidism. 

Like all supplements and medications, l-carnitine may also have side effects and interactions with other medications and supplements and therefore, you should take l-carnitine only under the direct supervision of a qualified and knowledgeable natural medicine professional.   

Here you can check out Vorst’s pure and natural L-Carnitine L-Tartrate Powder. 


Important resources: 

  1. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16175496/
  2. https://academic.oup.com/jcem/article/86/8/3579/2848640?login=true
  3. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/15591013/
  4. https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/11502782/
  5. https://www.healthline.com/health/hyperthyroidism-natural-treatment#l--carnitine
  6. https://www.europeanreview.org/wp/wp-content/uploads/2268-2273-A-novel-treatment-for-subclinical-hyperthyroidism.pdf
  7. https://www.news24.com/health24/diet-and-nutrition/weight-loss/l-carnitine-and-your-thyroid-20120721
  8. https://www.mountsinai.org/health-library/supplement/carnitine-l-carnitine#:~:text=Hyperthyroidism,%2C%20heart%20palpitations%2C%20and%20tremors.
  9. https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/hyperthyroidism/symptoms-causes/syc-20373659#:~:text=Overview,treatments%20are%20available%20for%20hyperthyroidism.