(CLEVELAND) — A new health warning is being sounded over a substance in popular energy drinks also found in red meat that could be the real culprit behind heart disease.
It’s called carnitine and when it combines with bacteria in the intestines, it produces a compound that clogs the arteries.
“Our data really suggests that this is a risk factor for accelerated heart disease,” said Dr. Stanley Hazen of the Cleveland Clinic, one of the authors of the report.
Carnitine speeds up the metabolism, and that’s why it’s put in energy drinks in the first place.
The research was published in the journal Nature Medicine.
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio
Kevin Conlon, Euan McKirdy and Johanzynn Gatewood, CNN
Susan Scutti, CNN
Sam Penrod, KSL.com