Last update: Jan. 6, 2015


Very Low Risk for breastfeeding

Safe. Compatible.
Minimal risk for breastfeeding and infant.

Amino acid that is present in many foods, among them the milk.

Indication is the treatment of Primary Deficiency of Carnitine, or, Secondary Deficiency due to Hemolysis, Myocardiopathy and other diseases.

Only Levocarnitine is effective as a supplement, with the consumption of D-carnitine regarded as a risk for deficiency.

Normal levels in the milk are not modified by the consumption of supplements of Carnitine. Mean concentration level within the first month is about 10 to 12 mg/L, with lower levels in the next following months.

The supplementation with Carnitine of the milk for premature infants does not improve their weight increment, with no proof of a beneficial effect.


We do not have alternatives for Carnitine since it is relatively safe.

Suggestions made at e-lactancia are done by APILAM´s pediatricians and pharmacists, and are based on updated scientific publications.
It is not intended to replace the relationship you have with your doctor but to compound it.

Jose Maria Paricio, Founder & President of APILAM/e-Lactancia

Your contribution is essential for this service to continue to exist. We need the generosity of people like you who believe in the benefits of breastfeeding.

Thank you for helping to protect and promote breastfeeding.

José María Paricio, founder of e-lactancia.


Main tradenames from several countries containing Carnitine in its composition:


Variable Value Unit
Oral Bioavail. 10 - 15 %
Molecular weight 161 daltons
Protein Binding 0 %
VD 0,2 - 0,3 l/Kg
Tmax 3 - 4 hours
T1/2 15 hours


  1. AESAN. Informe del Comité Científico de la Agencia Española de Seguridad Alimentaria y Nutrición (AESAN) sobre condiciones de uso de determinadas sustancias distintas de vitaminas, minerales y plantas para ser empleadas en complementos alimenticios - 1. Revista del comité científico nº 17. 2012 Full text (in our servers)
  2. Pande S, Brion LP, Campbell DE, Gayle Y, Esteban-Cruciani NV. Lack of effect of L-carnitine supplementation on weight gain in very preterm infants. J Perinatol. 2005 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  3. Evans AM, Fornasini G. Pharmacokinetics of L-carnitine. Clin Pharmacokinet. 2003 Abstract
  4. Cairns PA, Stalker DJ. Carnitine supplementation of parenterally fed neonates. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2000 Abstract
  5. Hromadová M, Parrák V, Huttová M, Danová K, Urvölgyová M. Carnitine level and several lipid parameters in venous blood of newborns, cord blood and maternal blood and milk. Endocr Regul. 1994 Abstract
  6. Mitchell ME, Snyder EA. Dietary carnitine effects on carnitine concentrations in urine and milk in lactating women. Am J Clin Nutr. 1991 Abstract Full text (link to original source) Full text (in our servers)
  7. Cederblad G, Svenningsen N. Plasma carnitine and breast milk carnitine intake in premature infants. J Pediatr Gastroenterol Nutr. 1986 Abstract
  8. Rovamo LM, Salmenperä L, Arjomaa P, Raivio KO. Carnitine during prolonged breast feeding. Pediatr Res. 1986 Abstract
  9. Sandor A, Pecsuvac K, Kerner J, Alkonyi I. On carnitine content of the human breast milk. Pediatr Res. 1982 Abstract

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e-lactancia is a resource recommended by La Liga de la Leche de Euskadi

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