Two Carnitines and Lipoic Acid May Help Parkinson’s

Q My husband, age 72, has recently been diagnosed with Parkinson’s. I remember reading somewhere that Parkinson’s symptoms had been helped by the carnitines, especially propionyl-L-carnitine. Do you have any information or advice on that?

JEAN, Woodway, TX

A Dr. Jonathan Wright has reported that on the website of Leif Grunseth, a Certified Neuro­muscular Therapist. More to the point, researchers have found that the carnitines can enhance walking in both animal and human studies.1 Propionyl-L-carnitine has been found to be valuable for muscles.2 Alpha-lipoic acid has also been found to be beneficial for human walking.3


  1. Brevetti G, di Lisa F, Perna S, Menabó R, Barbato R, Martone VD, Siliprandi N. Carnitine-related alterations in patients with intermittent claudication: indication for a focused carnitine therapy. Circulation 1996 May 1;93(9):1685-9.
  2. Smith WA, Fry AC, Tschume LC, Bloomer RJ. Effect of glycine propionyl-L-carnitine on aerobic and anaerobic exercise performance. Int J Sport Nutr Exerc Metab 2008 Feb;18(1):19-36.
  3. Vincent HK, Bourguignon CM, Vincent KR, Taylor AG. Effects of alpha-lipoic acid supplementation in peripheral arterial disease: a pilot study. J Altern Complement Med 2007 Jun;13(5):577-84.

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