Message Boards Message Boards

Supplements

Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)

Toggle
Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)
Answer
3/10/15 1:24 PM
i tried Alcar at a Jhana retreat at CML in Vermont last summer. 

It worked well.  I tried to limit myself to one 500mg tab on most days but slightly upped the dose at the end of the week as i had yet to acheive first Jhana.  And i think it helped me attain it.  it definitely seeme to improved my focus, going to bed I felt like Neo from the matrix, with fluke worms crawling up my nostrils.  I gave some to an experienced fellow meditator in residence--he tried it and he said he liked it.

On the morninging after my retreat, i  meditated and read for about one hour each.  Then lay in bed as a fiery globe moved throughout my body for an hour or so.  I took this to be a good experience of first Jhana.

alcar is reasonably safe from what i know.  I've seen it on Dave Asprey's Bulletproof Executive site and i believe it is referenced by another member on an old post on Bulletproof Coffe.  Alzeimer patients use it. 

i should also disclose that i had head injury 25yrs ago which may make this particularly effective for me.

Alex

RE: Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)
Answer
3/10/15 3:06 PM as a reply to Rednaxela.
When it comes to concentration developement, I don't get it how a supplement could actually help you in the long run. Isn't it like trying to get strong in say bench press through lowering the weight?

RE: Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)
Answer
3/10/15 3:43 PM as a reply to Pål.
yes, i see your point Pal.  if anything i would recommend cycling it, i.e., taking small dosage for a number of days then going off it for a few days.

But why take it in the first place?  That's a good question.  I just observe that i;ve had good experiences with it, and noticed today that there were no supplement messages.  So i figured i'd add my rather good experience.

i still keep a high fat, low carb ketogenic diet, which provides mental clarity and improves my pratice.  I dont consider that cheating - i figure that hunter gatherers at the time of the Buddha ate a diet that was probably much lower carb than the Std American Diet.

As for Alcar, maybe it is naturally occuring in the Southeast Asian diet.  Or maybe i'm just a bit of a cheater.

Incidentally, i've used it since my retreat and had some great experiences, but never as great as that morning.

Alex 

RE: Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)
Answer
3/10/15 6:15 PM as a reply to Pål.
There's generally a belief in the nootropic community that some noots have lasting benefits, in particular the ones that increase BDNF and NGF.

I'd say it's more like trying to eat healthy along with lifting weights.

RE: Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)
Answer
3/11/15 8:22 AM as a reply to Dada Kind.
Interesting, based on self-experimentation and reading books like Good Calories, Bad Calories, i also believe diet is related to gene expression. 

I've yet to embrace the nootropic community but certainly open to it.

Incidentally, Alcar is naturally occuring in plant and animals.  Beef is considered to be one of the best sources.

Alex 

RE: Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)
Answer
3/11/15 3:45 PM as a reply to Dada Kind.
since you piqued my interest in nootropics, i decided i would use my afternoon at work to drop 250mg of L-Theanine and 250mg of Bacopa.  From a quick internet search i found these to be two well-known nootropics and the doses are standard/minimal.  Accompanying the L-Theanine was a double shot Americano.

here's hoping the nice relaxed feeling carries into my evening meditation, if my young family allows for it. 

RE: Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)
Answer
3/11/15 5:57 PM as a reply to Rednaxela.
Nice, good luck. I hadn't thought about the gene expression bit but I will look into it now

This might help the curious
http://examine.com/supplements/Nootropic/

And for the purists out there,
http://examine.com/supplements/Ayurveda/
http://examine.com/supplements/Traditional+Chinese+Medicine/

RE: Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)
Answer
3/12/15 6:17 AM as a reply to Rednaxela.
Since rice and porridge are mentioned very often in the suttas, I think that most of early buddhiss where farmers on a high carb diet. Hunters and gathehers in 500 BC India? Sounds weird.

RE: Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)
Answer
3/12/15 6:18 AM as a reply to Dada Kind.
Makes sense, I almost forgot concentration in a way is a physichal ability and the mind a physichal organ.

RE: Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)
Answer
3/13/15 7:41 AM as a reply to Dada Kind.
Droll,

to let you know i felt elated taking half hour train ride home last night, and equally happy when i got home.  i only got a few minutes meditation in last night and this morning .   it was nice to sleep on a bed and i chose that over what looked like it would be a less than fruitful meditation (just moved and have had minimal sleep, mostly on floor).

Anyway, going to bed my head was full of light.  I usually like this--but last night it had an uncorfortable, driven quality that made me question whether i should be trying these mild substances. 

This morning, Bkfst of roasted pecans and nothing else (no nootropics but i took L-theanine and Bacopa when i got to office).  Meditating in living room and on the train was typical experience. 

i wont go on but will report any interesting meditation experiences
best

RE: Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)
Answer
3/12/15 11:10 AM as a reply to Rednaxela.
Is this the same supplement as the fat burning one? I googled it and the only benefit mentioned was fat burning, so the benefit for concentration must be unknown to the advertisers.

RE: Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)
Answer
3/12/15 1:57 PM as a reply to Pål.
L-Carnitine is that fat burning one used by dieters and bodybuilders.  I've also heard of some bodybuilders using Alcar (the Acetyl version) but mainly Alzheimer patients and old people use it.  Dave Asprey who i menitoned recommends as it "crosses the blood/brain barrier": i've got a clue  but not entirely sure what that means.

If you try it let me know what you think.  Best

RE: Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)
Answer
3/13/15 12:45 AM as a reply to Rednaxela.
Even though I'm into both meditation and hobby body building I think I should probably stay away from fat burning since I'm underweight. Maybe when I'm middle aged or something I could try!

RE: Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)
Answer
8/14/15 1:16 PM as a reply to Rednaxela.
OK - i tried this stuff for a while and no longer like it.  I do not plan to use it in the near term.  I would suggest to others they be careful

in brief:

* my concentration on the face has been excessive at times, kind of headachy.  I am only now coming off it as i try to focus energy elsewhere
* i have had good feelings, like warmth and wind blowing down the inside of my face - but the feelings are even better and more profuse thankfully over the last two months when i've stopped occasional usage
* it feels like "wrong concentration" 
* my zen teacher, a retired heart surgeon familiar with the substance, consulled me against it

May all beings be happy

RE: Acetyl L-Carnitine (Alcar)
Answer
5/9/18 4:02 PM as a reply to Pål.
Pål:
When it comes to concentration developement, I don't get it how a supplement could actually help you in the long run. Isn't it like trying to get strong in say bench press through lowering the weight?

The way I think about this issue is, if the weight is too heavy then yeah you should lower the weight in order to begin your journey in getting strong at bench press.

So for people who struggle to develop concentration, taking a supplement could help them get a foot in the door and show the mind that those states are possible and thus increase intrinsic motivation too