What is Conjugated Linoleic Acid: CLA Benefits & Side Effects

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Conjugated Linoleic Acid Benefits and Side Effects

A very significant fatty acid for our body is conjugated linoleic acid, which is very helpful to reduce weight, prevent heart problems, prevent all three stages of cancer and also useful for diabetics to maintain insulin level. Conjugated Linoleic Acid is also known as CLA, and it is an omega-6 essential fatty acid. Our body cannot produce this fatty acid, and it is supplemented by different dietary and supplementary sources to fulfill the body requirement. CLA is very significant and vital for many biochemical reactions which happen to the body.

Conjugated linoleic acid has great significance for different functions of our body; it is highly associated with weight loss. It is considerable to prevent catabolic effects because of high-level training. Because of this factor, CLA is good for bodybuilders and athletes. It is also very useful for weight loss as it reduces body fats, and also shows some other body benefits. CLA has powerful health effects, and it is present in beef, dairy products, and poultry products.

Chemistry of Conjugated Linoleic Acid

Linoleic acid is a very common Omega 6 fatty acid, and it is present in a great quantity of vegetable oils and beef and dairy products of grass-fed animals and also in poultry products.

The word conjugated is the arrangement of double bonds in the fatty acid molecules. 28 different forms of conjugated linoleic acid are available, but the two most famous types are “c9, t11” and “t10, c12”.

CLA is a type of polyunsaturated fatty acid, with cis and trans both double bonds. CLA is a natural Tran’s fat, and it is available in various healthy foods. These trans fats which are present in natural foods are healthy instead of this, trans fats which are produced in industries are harmful.

Health Benefits of Conjugated Linoleic Acid

Conjugated Linoleic Acid has many health benefits, and it is studied at the high level to know the importance of CLA. After conducting a lot of studies, it is believed that CLA is very useful to develop and improve the functioning of immune system and good for reducing body fat as well. Studies also conducted on animals, which show that good to fight with three stages of cancer. Women with breast cancer issue can improve their problem by CLA intake.

CLA is very useful to reduce the effects of the heart problem, helps to slow down cancer effects and very effective to reduce body fat. But keep in mind that for getting the best results from CLA, it should come from meat and dairy of the animals that are grass-fed. Animals which take natural grass have 3 to 5 times more amount of conjugated linolic acid, instead of those animals which have other diets.

Some of the significant benefits of conjugated linoleic acid are mentioned below:

  • CLA is significant to increase energy in the body.
  • CLA is well known to increase the fat loss efforts in the body and particularly in the abdominal area.
  • Conjugated linoleic acid is very effective for weight loss.
  • It is very helpful to reduce cholesterol level in the body.
  • CLA is also effective to enhance lean muscle mass.
  • Another significant advantage of conjugated linoleic acid is that it is very efficient to boost metabolism.
  • It is also good to improve the functioning of immune system.
  • CLA is also useful to reduce cancer problem.
  • CLA is efficient to prevent catabolic effects and for this reason, it is very significant for athletes and bodybuilders and the persons who are involved in high intense exercises.
  • CLA is also signed important to maintain an average insulin level and in return, it helps to improve diabetic patients.

Helps to Reduce Weight:

CLA is highly associated with a weight loss component. It is present in many different foods especially in the meat and dairy of grass-fed animals, and it is very helpful to reduce body fat at a high level. CLA enhances the activity of carnitine palmitoyltransferase; it is an enzyme which is useful to move fat into mitochondria of body cells, at this place it burns very rapidly.

Dr. Michael Pariza from the University of Wisconsin-Madison has made a report to the American Chemical Society that the use of CLA “Doesn’t make a big fat cell get little. What it does instead keeps a little fat cell from becoming bigger.” These studies show that without any change in lifestyle; diet and exercise one can carry easily lose weight with intake of CLA supplements. If you use CLA with the healthy eating plan and exercise, it will help you to reduce your weight at the great extent and also capable of maintaining your weight at desired level. Conjugated linoleic acid is very useful to boost the potential of the body to reduce fat.

Although CLA is very helpful in concerns of weight loss, remember that you can’t take it as a weight loss pill. It is an excellent choice for the persons who want to make eating habits right and for the individuals who are engaged in high-intensity work. The major function of CLA is the production of lean muscle.

Helps to fight from Cancer:

CLA is very efficient to fight with all of the three stages of cancer, initiation, promotion, and progression. It is also very helpful to reduce the influence of dangerous carcinogens which cause cells to mutate. CLA can be used as the anti-cancer factor because it enhances the ability of the body to absorb fat-soluble vitamins like vitamins A and D and it will help to regulate the production and development of new cells, and it contributes to regulating cellular functions.

Prevents Heart Diseases:

CLA helps to store fat as energy, so it can be used to treat and protect the individual from some kinds of heart diseases like atherosclerosis. CLA is very useful to stop the deposition of plaque and lipids in arteries, in this way it helps to reduce the chances of heart diseases.

Helps to Treat Diabetes:

Another significant advantage of CLA is that it is very useful to prevent diabetes with the aid of lowering insulin resistance. It is crucial to maintaining insulin level in the diabetic patients. Purdue University in Indiana revealed that CLA develops insulin levels in about 2/3 of the diabetics concerned in the study as well as a bonus of minor decrease in both triglyceride and blood glucose levels. These changes show that CLA can control and maintain insulin at the normal level.

Boosts Energy Level:

Conjugated linoleic acid is very significant to boost your energy level by increasing the fat burning. Due to this reason, it is highly recommended for athletes and body builders and also for the persons who are committing dieting and wants to fight with obesity.

Produces Lean Muscle Tissue:

The best benefit of conjugated linoleic acid is the production of lean muscle tissue. For this reason, it is very useful for the people who are engaged in exercise and high-intensity work.

Working Procedure of Conjugated Linoleic Acid

Conjugated linoleic acid is very helpful to produce lean muscle tissue. Lean muscle tissue help to boost metabolism process and in return it contributes to burning additional calories in a natural way. In this way, it contributes to reducing fat of the body which aids you to lose your weight and gives you extra energy for your work and exercise.

Natural Sources of Conjugated Linoleic Acid:

Conjugated linoleic acid is highly available in beef and dairy products of grass-fed animals and especially in cows. There are many supplementary diets are available for CLA, but most effective CLA supplemental diets are beef, milk and egg. Studies also show that animals which eat grass are more likely to give CLA as compared to the animals that take other feed.

  1. Beef:

The best source of conjugated linoleic acid is beef which comes from cows that are grass-fed. The diet of the cow is changing in the present world from grass to processed feed. The diet of the cow is highly concerned to tell you how much CLA is present in beef. If a cow is eating corn diet, it is less likely to have CLA. Grass-fed cows are the best source of CLA because grass has omega-3 fatty acids and it is not present in corn. The beef which is fresh and from grass fed cow contains 4.3 milligrams of CLA in each gram of fat.

  1. Milk:

Another great source of CLA is milk, which is taken from grass fed animals. Again here the diet of animals is highly concerned to have the amount of CLA. Grass fed animals milk has more CLA than other animals. Another important thing to know is that CLA is present in the fat of milk. The milk which is with the versions of low-fat or nonfat has very less amount of CLA than whole milk. It is estimated that cow’s milk has 5.5 milligrams of conjugated linoleic acid in each gram of fat.

  1. Eggs:

Eggs are also an excellent source of conjugated linoleic acid. The chickens which are on grass fed are more likely to give eggs with the high amount of CLA. Eggs from grass fed chickens are a great source of CLA and help you to take CLA in your body at the high level.

CLA Supplements

There are many supplements also available for conjugated linoleic acid other than natural animal food. One of the supplements is refined safflower oil. But studies show that these CLA supplements cannot give the same benefits as beef or dairy products of animals give. But it may be possible that have some adverse effects on body’s insulin resistance.

The conjugated linoleic acid which comes from animal sources is a vital part of healthy diet and living. It helps to protect you from many diseases and boost your metabolism and moreover helps you to reduce weight.

Daily Dosage required of CLA

Conjugated linoleic acid is a polyunsaturated acid, and it is highly concerned with reducing the chances of heart diseases, cancer, and weight problems. It is also very helpful to reduce cholesterol level and blood pressure problems. It provides energy with the burning of fats and helps to produce lean muscle tissues.

To get all of these benefits of CLA, you should know how much dosage your body required of CLA; it is a real question. The human body cannot be able to produce CLA, and it only can be taken by healthy food or by CLA supplements to fulfill the requirements of the body. It is seen from the studied that 1.7 grams to 6.8 gram CLA are necessary for an average human in different portions. Intake of 3 grams conjugated linoleic acid daily is very helpful to give you all of these benefits. It is highly recommended a good intake of CLA for athletes, body builders and exercise enthusiasts and for the person who are fighting with obesity as well. It is said that individuals weighing 155 pounds or more should obtain 3.5 g of CLA to get health benefits at full peak.

At Scandinavian Clinical Research in Norway, a latest study was conducted, and it indicated a reduction in the body’s fat mass with 3.4 grams per day while the group which is given the highest dose of 6.8 grams also experienced a slight increase in lean body mass. In this study the particular brand which is used is Tonalin.

In short, conjugated linoleic acid is highly effective for good health, protection from many diseases, to boost metabolism and to reduce weight effectively. But to get all of these advantages you should make sure that the CLA diet you are taking is abundant with CLA. The beef or meat which is bought from a typical store is not always enriching with CLA, as it is not from the animals of grass fed. You should e sure that the beef you are eating is from grass fed the animal to get more CLA. The animals which fed on grains have 500 times less CLA as compared to the animals who are on grass fed.

Suitable for Persons who are fighting with Obesity

When someone used to fight with obesity and want to lose his or her weight, it is seen that they cut off the use of fats. But conjugated linoleic acid is very helpful in reducing weight and gives the required amount of energy to the body. Red meat, eggs, milk and all dairy products and lamb all of these are enrich in CLA. It is highly recommended to take CLA in your diet for healthy weight loss, and it prevents the chances of reducing your energy level.

Some Side Effects of High Intake CLA Supplements

In spite of a lot of benefits of CLA intake, you should also be aware of the side effects which can be seen due to the intake of CLA and you should discuss these side effects with your doctor.

  • You can feel some fatigue, which is a side effect of CLA treatment. Due to increased fatigue, it can be difficult to continue your daily routine.
  • You may also experience diarrhea, because of intestinal irritation due to the intake of CLA.
  • Sometimes you may feel to sleep for an extended period.
  • CLA is thought to reduce body fat, but in some cases it also possible that it retains fat in the liver, and this situation can lead to insulin resistance.
  • Some individuals may be allergic from CLA; some allergic reactions are irritation, itching in body, skin rash and may be it cause difficulty in breathing.

So, it is important to consult a doctor before taking any CLA supplement to reduce the chances of these side effects and get more benefits.

Make sure to take your daily requirement of conjugated linoleic acid. It will help you to boost your energy level and also help you to protect you from diseases like cancer and diabetes. Always be sure to take CLA from the right sources which are enriched with conjugated linoleic acid. CLA, which comes from healthy diet, is more efficient to give you many benefits. It is highly recommended for reducing the risk of cancer like, breast cancer, skin and stomach cancer. If you want to take some supplements of conjugated linoleic acid, you should first consult with a doctor and understand all of these benefits and side-effects of CLA.

Author Bio
Jazzlyn Addison is a professional writer and blogger. Jazz is an expert in content creation and marketing. The writer has years of experience in writing scientific blogs and articles. She possesses expertise in writing science, health and fitness related journals.

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