Carniking™ is a special grade of L-carnitine, manufactured by Lonza. It can be used in the manufacture of dog and cat dry foods and treats. We are dedicated to demonstrating the benefits of our products through sound science and will continue to actively research the application of Carniking™ for use in pet food.
Carniking™ is the same as nature intended and manufactured under strict quality guidelines and internal quality control steps. Products carrying the Carniking™ quality seal on the packaging signify that pets are receiving high-quality L-carnitine to help them live long and healthy lives.
What is Carniking™?
Carniking™ is Lonza’s high-quality brand of L‑carnitine.
L‑carnitine was first discovered in 1905. Since then, extensive research has demonstrated the important role it plays in helping bodies utilize dietary fat for energy. Without sufficient L‑carnitine in the body, humans and pets would not be able to utilize fat effectively and long-term health problems would occur.
L‑carnitine’s role in the body is to shuttle long-chain fatty acids across the inner-mitochondrial membrane (mitochondria is where fat is converted into energy) so they can be metabolized and converted into energy. Without L‑carnitine, these fatty acids wouldn’t be transported and properly utilized.
Dietary Supplementation of Carniking™ Can Be Vital
There are two ways animals can obtain their L‑carnitine needs: endogenous biosynthesis (made within the body) or from foods containing some level of L‑carnitine.
The body only produces a small amount of L‑carnitine and doesn’t increase the amount of natural L‑carnitine production even if the body is lacking it. There are conditions when more carnitine is needed in the body. These include:
- Infant development: L‑carnitine production is limited during the infancy stage
- Senior living: L‑carnitine production begins to slow during the aging process
- Periods of increased exercise and stress
- Muscle development and recovery
There have been reported cases where humans and animals lacking the ability to manufacture sufficient quantities of L‑carnitine continued to live a more normal life once L‑carnitine supplementation was offered.
The amount of L‑carnitine obtained from food intake varies based on ingredients consumed:
- Red meats, poultry and fish provide varying levels of L‑carnitine. The redder the meat, the higher level of L‑carnitine it tends to contain.
- Fruits, vegetables and grains contain only trace amounts.
With pet formulations, the types and amounts of meats, grains and vegetables used will vary by stage and brand, so that the final dietary levels of natural L‑carnitine will vary significantly. Of course, pet food recipes formulated with little to no red meat products will contain low levels of L‑carnitine.
Because of the risk that can occur from inadequate L‑carnitine intake, pet food or treats with dietary L‑carnitine can reduce the risk of deficiency symptoms occurring. As an example, we know that meats, grains and vegetable food products contain various amounts of vitamins and minerals, but we also recognize the need for additional supplementation since we are unsure of their overall contribution to the final diet. In this case, we tend to consider additional supplementation to help cover our pet’s vitamin and mineral needs. Therefore, this same safety and formulation principle should hold true for supplementing all diets with L‑carnitine during all stages of dogs and cats.
L‑carnitine has many important roles besides aiding fat digestion. L‑carnitine impacts many other cellular biochemical processes in the body, both directly and indirectly. Many scientifically proven functions have been identified which include optimizing exercise and muscle recovery, cardiovascular and brain health, weight management, liver function, bone development and infant nutrition.
Carniking™ Health Benefits
According to the Association for Pet Obesity Prevention (APOP), a recent study concluded that 50% of dogs and 57% of cats are either overweight or obese.
Pets are becoming overweight not only because of overfeeding, but most are living longer and have limited daily exercise. This is a serious concern because an overweight condition can be associated with many health problems.
The body derives its energy from the metabolism of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. In order for the body to utilize these nutrients for energy, they must first be broken down into smaller building blocks. In the case of fats, the digestion starts with the release of smaller fatty acid units from the longer fatty acid chains. These small fatty acids are then transported to the mitochondria, the site where they are converted into energy.
| The transport of fatty acids by L-carnitine from the cytosol into the mitochondria|
The primary function of L-carnitine is to aid in the transport of fatty acids into the mitochondria. The mitochondrion is often referred to as the “engine” of the cell and one of its primary functions is to convert fat into energy. These fatty acids are not able to cross the mitochondria membrane without a carrier. This carrier is L-carnitine and it plays a vital role in normal fat metabolism.
Carniking™ and Weight Management
The value of Carniking™ and its role in supporting weight management for humans and pets has been well researched and numerous studies are available.
Carniking™ research in pets has shown that when diets containing Carniking™ are fed to both dogs and cats, the level of body fat is reduced while the percentage of lean muscle mass increases.
Carniking™ in the Heart
The heart is a working muscle continuously requiring energy and nutrients. Nutrient demands for the heart of a dog or cat is higher than that for a human. The average heartbeat of a dog ranges from 100 to 160 beats per minute (bpm) while for cats it’s 120 to 220 bpm. This is in contrast to the human heart which averages approximately 72 bpm. In order to maintain its constant workload, the heart requires a steady supply of energy and L-carnitine. The heart obtains most of its energy from the oxidation of fatty acids. Because of L-carnitine’s role in transporting fatty acids, the heart has a high demand for it. Since the heart is not able to produce its own L-carnitine, it must rely on other sources to supply its daily needs. It’s not surprising then that a greater concentration of L-carnitine is found within the heart muscle when compared to other organs.
Carniking™ in the Liver
All organs are important, but the liver plays a unique role because of the many functions it serves. The liver is best known as “the filter” for helping to remove or detoxify wastes found in the body. The liver also produces many key enzymes, hormones, proteins and other substances important to pets to convert their food into usable forms for maintenance, growth and functionality. The liver has to maintain a balance of lipids entering the body through the diet and those utilized by the liver or exported to other tissues. Supplementing cat diets with Carniking™ has been shown to improve fatty acid oxidation. Additionally, research has shown that supplemental Carniking™ supports normal liver function in cats undergoing substantial weight changes via minimizing fat accumulation in the liver.
Advances in health and nutrition have led to increasing life expectancies – not only for people, but pets also. The American Veterinary Medical Association’s 2007 US Pet Ownership & Demographics Sourcebook stated that the percentage of the US dog and cat population age 6 or older increased to 44% in 2006. With this growing trend there is an important need to invest in maintaining and improving the quality of life of our senior pets.
Available L-carnitine in the body decreases with age because of three main reasons:
1. The availability of the free L-carnitine (the active form) pool decreases because food intake normally decreases with age
2. The dietary make-up transitions to a diet of reduced red meat intake
3. The bodies ability to produce L-carnitine begins to drop
Supplementation with Carniking™ can positively influence the aging process for a number of different reasons including its ability to support the body’s antioxidant defense system and also support mitochondrial efficiency. In addition, Carniking™ supplementation may help support energy metabolism in the heart and skeletal muscles of older pets.
Carniking™ Quality and Safety
We operate exclusively with a dedicated Carniking™ manufacturing process and facility to minimize the risk of cross contamination and increase the level of traceability. Our state-of-the-art Carniking™ manufacturing plant is ISO 9001, ISO 14001, FSSC 22000 and FAMI-QS certified and operates under the guidance of HACCP and HAZOP principles.
The new Carniking™ manufacturing process is the most environmentally conscious process available today.