CLA, short for conjugated linoleic acid, is the most common omega-6 fatty acid. It is a popular ingredient in weight loss supplements.
Unlike the processed man-made types of unsaturated fats, CLA is a naturally occuring trans-fat — which is one of the main reasons why it is considered the most healthy fatty acid.
1. Reduces Body Fat in Animals
According to multiple studies, CLA reduces body fat in animals by boosting the production of enzymes and proteins that are involved in the breakdown of fat.
For instance, this study conducted on mice concluded that supplementing with CLA for six weeks reduced body fat by 70%, compared to the group of mice that was given a placebo.
Furthermore, multiple recent studies suggest that CLA prevents fat gain in animals. Moreover, a study on pigs concludes that conjugated linoleic acid reduces fat growth in a dose-dependent manner. Meaning that higher doses result in less fat gain.
2. Helps Humans Lose Weight
Research on CLA’s relation with weight loss in humans suggests that this fatty acid is effective. However, the results are not significant.
According to this review of 18 studies, participants who took 3.2 grams of CLA daily lost an average of 0.05 kg (0.11 lbs) per week, compared to those who took a placebo.
Even though the result was considered scientifically significant, it only translates to less than half a pound of weight loss per month.
Furthermore, another study concludes that taking 2.4-6 grams of CLA daily 6-12 months reduces body fat by 2.93 lbs, compared to a placebo.
3. Enhances Muscle Growth
A few recent studies suggest that CLA increases lean muscle mass in humans. However, more research needs to be carried out for confirming these claims.
4. Reduces Risk of Heart Disease
According to this study, people with the highest amount of CLA in their bodies face reduced risk of suffering from certain heart diseases.
5. Lowers Risk of Cancer and Type 2 Diabetes
According to this study, people who get a lot of CLA from natural food sources have a lower risk of suffering from cancer and type 2 diabetes.
Health Issues Associated With CLA Deficiency
After reading the previous section, the benefits of CLA become as clear as daylight.
People deficient in CLA face more risk of:
- Gaining fat and weight
- Suffering from certain heart diseases
- Suffering from cancer or type 2 diabetes
If you want to enjoy the benefits of CLA and reduce your chances of suffering from the problems listed above, add a CLA supplement to your diet.
Daily Recommended Intake
According to most studies, 3.4-6 grams of CLA per day is recommended for weight loss. Furthermore, doses of up to 6 grams are considered safe, with no serious adverse side effects.
However, please keep in mind that the higher the amount of CLA dosage you take, the higher your chances of experiencing side effects.
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