Pyruvate is a nutrient that plays a critical role in the processes that control energy production in the body. It can be found in the cell mitochondria, the so-called "power plant" of the cell. Here, it helps facilitate important metabolic processes that fuel the body.

While pyruvate is produced naturally in the body, some research suggests that supplementation with the nutrient may help the body use energy more efficiently. Pyruvic acid is chemically unstable, so product manufacturers stabilize it by combining it with various minerals to form a "salt." The most commonly available salt forms are calcium pyruvate, magnesium pyruvate, sodium pyruvate or potassium pyruvate.

Dosage Info

Dosage Range

2 to 30 grams daily.

Most Common Dosage

1 to 5 grams daily.

Dosage Forms

Tablets, capsules, and powder.

Reported Uses

Several studies have looked at pyruvate’s potential for curbing obesity. Scientists believe this benefit is linked to the nutrient’s role in body metabolism, (1) , (2) , (3) . Pyruvate increases the available energy for muscles to use, which results in more calories being burned as energy, and less being stored as fat. (4)

Other studies have suggested that pyruvate may enhance endurance during exercise, (5) , (6) though a study involving well conditioned cyclists demonstrated no benefit. (7) What’s more, pyruvate may function as an antioxidant, thereby reducing free radical damage to the body. (8) , (9)

Toxicities & Precautions


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This dietary supplement is considered safe when used in accordance with proper dosing guidelines.

If you are planning to have any type of surgery or dental work, stop using this dietary supplement for at least 14 days prior to the procedure.

Health Conditions

If you have a bleeding disorder, talk to your doctor before taking this dietary supplement.

Side Effects

Side effects are possible with any dietary supplement. Doses of 30 grams or more have caused occasional nausea and stomach upset. Tell your doctor if these side effects become severe or do not go away.

Pregnancy / Breast Feeding

To date, the medical literature has not reported any adverse effects related to fetal development during pregnancy or to infants who are breast-fed. Yet little is known about the use of this dietary supplement while pregnant or breast-feeding. Therefore, it is recommended that you inform your healthcare practitioner of any dietary supplements you are using while pregnant or breast-feeding.

Age Limitations

To date, the medical literature has not reported any adverse effects specifically related to the use of this dietary supplement in children. Since young children may have undiagnosed allergies or medical conditions, this dietary supplement should not be used in children under 10 years of age unless recommended by a physician.


  1. View Abstract: Stanko RT, et al. Body composition, energy utilization, and nitrogen metabolism with a 4.25-MJ/d low-energy diet supplemented with pyruvate. Am J Clin Nutr. Oct1992;56(4):630-5.
  2. View Abstract: Stanko RT, Arch JE. Inhibition of regain in body weight and fat with addition of 3-carbon compounds to the diet with hyperenergetic refeeding after weight reduction. Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord. Oct1996;20(10):925-30.
  3. View Abstract: Kalman D, et al. The effects of pyruvate supplementation on body composition in overweight individuals. Nutrition. May1999;15(5):337-40.
  4. View Abstract: Ivy JL. Effect of pyruvate and dihydroxyacetone on metabolism and aerobic endurance capacity. Med Sci Sports Exerc. Jun1998;30(6):837-43.
  5. View Abstract: Stanko RT, et al. Enhancement of arm exercise endurance capacity with dihydroxyacetone and pyruvate. J Appl Physiol. Jan1990;68(1):119-24.
  6. View Abstract: Stanko RT, et al. Enhanced leg exercise endurance with a high-carbohydrate diet and dihydroxyacetone and pyruvate. J Appl Physiol. Nov1990;69(5):1651-6.
  7. View Abstract: Morrison MA, Spriet LL, Dyck DJ. Pyruvate ingestion for 7 days does not improve aerobic performance in well-trained individuals. J Appl Physiol. Aug2000;89(2):549-56.
  8. View Abstract: O’Donnell-Tormey J, et al. Secretion of pyruvate. An antioxidant defense of mammalian cells. J Exp Med. Feb1987;165(2):500-14.
  9. View Abstract: Marcengill MB, et al. Antioxidant effects of pyruvate in isolated rat hearts. J Mol Cell Cardiol. Sep1995;27(9):2059-67.