Carnosine

Carnosine is a peptide that is produced when two amino acids are combined. The amino acids are beta-alanine and histidine. This substance is found in both muscles and in the brain tissues. Research has shown that carnosine has very powerful antioxidant properties. Antioxidants are important in the bodies fight against pollutants and toxins that are introduced to it through the environment. If cells are not protected against these toxins and chemicals then cell death or mutation can occur. Antioxidants work to protect the body against these problems.

Some examples of carnosine’s antioxidant properties are its anti-aging properties. Carnosine has been shown to have a positive effect on or the ability to chelate metals that are in the body. It also has been shown to reduce the effects of glycation. Glycation is a process that causes damage to the proteins that are the building blocks of material in the body such as collagen and muscle tissue. In this process sugars and proteins are fused together which is damaging to the proteins. The product of this fusion is known as AGE’s or advanced glycation end products. These damaged proteins can no longer function as they were designed to originally. Damage to these proteins can cause both disease processes and premature aging in individuals. These AGE’s have been linked to many diseases and to the aging processes some of the disease processes include cancer, heart disease, and Alzheimer’s Disease.

Therefore scientists feel that carnosine may play a key role in anti-aging therapy. Research has also shown that carnosine has been beneficial in reducing the effects of diabetic neuropathy. It works by protecting the cells that can become damaged during this process. Other preliminary studies that have been done involving rats and have shown that carnosine may be beneficial in preventing the formation of cataracts on the lens of the eye. However researchers feel that further study is needed before final determination is made as to the efficacy of this supplement in that disease process.

Other studies have been done with carnosine on children who have autism which showed that children may have benefited showing more socialization and verbalization skills after taking this supplement. Again scientists feel that further research is needed before a final determination is made on this matter. However the preliminary research looked promising in this area. Further research online finds studies done on this area including a study done by Michael Chez M.D. in Chicago, Illinois. The study was done on children using a combination of supplements. The combination used in this study was L-Carnosine 400mg per day, Vitamin E 50 IU per day and Zinc 5 mg per day. The results of the study showed that the children who were given the combination of these supplements showed a marked improvement in both socialization, behavior and verbal communication. The children showed an improvement in social interaction of 27% and their behavior and verbal communication skills improved around 16%. The researchers started seeing improvement in the children within four weeks of starting the regimen noted above.

It should be noted that there has been reports of children reacting badly and becoming hyperactive or irritable on higher doses of L-Carnosine. Scientists feel that in higher dosages this supplement may cause too much stimulation in the frontal lobes of the brain. There has been some evidence of a cortisone or histamine type response to higher dosages of carnosine as well. So consumers should be aware of this and be vigilant when taking this supplement.

As noted with any type of supplement, if you have any type of chronic medical condition please consult your physician or medical professional before starting this supplement or any other to make sure it is safe to do so. Supplements are generally safe but they can interact with medications or they can interfere with some disease processes so it is better to be safe than to be sorry later!

Last updated on Dec 3rd, 2009 and filed under Nutritional Information. Both comments and pings are currently closed.

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