CLA: Can this fatty acid help you lose weight?
Admirers of CLA or conjugated linoleic acid supplements do not doubt it. Here's some helpful information on how CLA works and how you can incorporate it into your workout and diet plan!
"GET RID OF FAT WITH FAT!" Yes, it does sound like another questionable advertising promise. However, more and more people are starting their way to a slimmer height with CLA (from English - conjugated linoleic acid or conjugated linoleic acid) are convinced that this new method of weight loss really works. People have noticed that using CLA with a balanced diet and a carefully crafted workout plan not only reduces body fat, but also increases muscle strength and physical endurance. In addition, these claims about CLA, which seem too good to be true, have also begun to be studied by science - and it turns out that CLA has convinced skeptics as well.
CLA is associated with omega-6 fatty acids, one of the two types of metabolic fatty acids that help the body increase metabolic rate, improve the immune system, and help maintain healthy cholesterol levels. CLA is found in dairy products and animal fats, including beef, lamb, whole milk, and eggs, but the human body is unable to synthesize it.
Interest in CLA began in the late 1980s, when Michael V. Paris, a professor in the Department of Food Microbiology and Toxicology at the University of Wisconsin, discovered an isolated substance in a fried hamburger that has the ability to reduce the spread of cancer in mice. A few years later, his team managed to expose this mysterious substance: a type of linoleic acid called conjugated linoleic acid, or CLA.
It has been observed that CLA helps people who are overweight or obese and who do not make any changes to their diet to reduce body fat and maintain their existing muscle mass.
Thanks to this discovery, countless studies have begun. Although they looked at different variables and had different conclusions, one of the consistent findings was that CLA helps people get rid of excess body fat. The most frequently cited is a Norwegian study published in 2000 The Journal of Nutrition. It found that CLA helps people who are overweight or obese, who, moreover, do not make any changes to their diet, to reduce body fat and maintain existing muscle tissue. According to the study project leader, participants in the CLA group were able to lose about two and a half kilograms more body fat than participants in the non-CLA placebo group.
In the meantime, in another edition The Journal of Internal Medicine Research According to a published study, CLA also reduces body fat in healthy people who are physically active and have a normal body weight. In turn, the edition International Journal of Obesity A published study found that CLA reduces body fat in the abdomen in obese men, while Louisiana State University researchers report a reduction in body fat of up to 88 percent in male mice given CLA over a six-week period.
How does CLA work?
CLA reduces the amount of body fat by accelerating the basal metabolic rate. In other words, it helps the body convert energy ingested into energy more efficiently. CLA does not reduce body weight as such, but, as Paris explains to the American Chemical Society, "it prevents a small fat cell from getting bigger." As a result, the ratio of body fat to muscle mass may be affected. In one study, Paris found that those participants who stopped dieting and stopped taking CLA returned their lost weight over time in a fairly typical way - about 75 percent fat versus 25 percent muscle. On the other hand, those study participants who stopped diet but continued to take CLA also gained weight, but in their case the above ratio was 50:50.
The benefits of using CLA do not end with a slimmer waist. Subsequent studies suggest that in addition to increasing muscle strength and physical endurance, CLA may also influence the development and course of certain diseases. Dr. Delbert Derseid, a researcher in cancer and asthma at the University of Chicago's Faculty of Lung and Critical Care Medicine, reviewed more than 200 worldwide studies and clinical trials on the positive effects of CLA on human health. Some of the results suggest that women with elevated CLA have a relatively lower incidence of breast cancer. Similar results have been reported for colon and prostate cancer. In addition, it does not end there: CLA is also associated with improved immune function, as well as a reduction in cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, osteoporosis and even allergies.
Paris cautiously points out that CLA research is still in its infancy. "Some of these findings are better documented than others," he admits. "CLA has a strong depressant effect on the accumulation of body fat, but there is no conclusive evidence of its effect on muscle. In animal models, CLA reduces the development of some, but not all, cancers; Eating CLA is a particularly effective way to reduce the spread of breast cancer in rodents. However, some aspects, such as its effects in diabetes, have not been proven. "
Be that as it may, even if CLA does not work miraculously in the treatment of cancer, there is a good chance that it will continue to be a very popular dietary supplement in the future.
According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly three out of four adult Americans are overweight or obese. And there is no doubt that many of these people would be happy to take an effective dietary supplement on their way to a slimmer body.
Who can benefit from CLA?
Can conjugated linoleic acid help you too? Probably if you know how to use it properly. Most studies have found that a person needs to take 3.4 grams of CLA (3,400 mg) every day to take advantage of its health benefits (several studies used two to three times the amount used, but these studies lasted only 12 weeks ). However, there is no real clarity as to the sources of these 3.4 grams. According to Peter V. Parodi, a nutrition scientist from the Australian Dairy Research and Development Corporation in Victoria, of all the CLAs found in food, "milk fat is the most valuable source of CLA." However, the consumption of dairy products and red meat in the USA, which has been taken over by the "low-fat" madness, has recently decreased significantly. Research from the University of Wisconsin indicates that dietary intake of CLA is likely to have declined by as much as 80 percent over the past two decades.
But even if you decide to beat several glasses of whole milk a day, you probably won't take enough CLA anyway. Due to changes in the feeding habits of livestock over the last 50 years, naturally occurring CLA in our diet has been virtually eradicated. Ph.D. Larry D. Saters, an agricultural researcher and dairy scientist from the U.S. Dairy Research Center in Madison, Wisconsin, recently conducted a study comparing CLA levels in the milk of grazed cows and hay or silage-fed cows. Saters found that the CLA content in the milk of cows grazed was 500 percent higher than in the milk of cows fed silage. "This also applies to cases where ungrazed cattle eat hay," says Saters. It has also been observed that the CLA content is higher in the meat of grazing beef compared to grain-fed cattle.
The good news is that for low CLA milk, the days are likely to be numbered. Researchers at the University of Alberta in Canada have stated that they are developing milk that will contain more CLA - this will be achieved by including various oils in the animal's diet, including rapeseed, safflower or linseed oil. A patent application for this formula is currently pending.
But for now, according to Paris, supplements are the healthiest way to absorb CLA because they are made to contain biologically active CLA isomers (chemical compounds) in certain amounts and proportions. 'The presence of CLA in foods naturally containing CLA, including beef and dairy products, is associated with an increased fat content. Namely, to get enough CLA, you would have to eat a lot of fat. ”
Are all CLA supplements the same? It is not. Different brands of products usually contain different amounts of active CLA. Since each formula also contains other oils in different proportions, it would be necessary to calculate how much CLA you will take using the particular dietary supplement and make sure that they are at least 3.4 grams per day. If one 1,000 mg capsule contains 75 percent CLA, you are taking 750 mg of CLA, which means that you need to take five such capsules to take the recommended 3.4 grams. The most common form of CLA used in research is a patented formulation Tonalin. Tonalin found in several brands, including Natrol, Jarrow Formulas and Nature’s Way products
Most people agree that it is best to take CLA supplements before or with a meal. Side effects are very rare, but nausea or indigestion is sometimes seen. However, they can be reduced by taking the food supplement with protein, such as low-fat milk. People who report side effects most often admit that they usually go away after about two weeks. To date, no association of CLA with health risks or serious adverse events has been identified.
However, it is important to remember that CLA is not a magic potion. It cannot replace a balanced diet or physical activity. "I think this substance can definitely help [lose weight], but it's not a panacea," admits Paris. However, he believes that dieting CLA provides significant psychological benefits. In its study, Paris noticed that participants who took CLA regularly found that they felt significantly better than those who received placebo. "It's basically about reducing the stress of a weight loss diet," he explains. "CLA can also be useful for people who follow a diet, in part because the improved results help them not stop and keep going."
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