How CLA Helps With Weight Loss
Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) is a name you will hear all through the supplement industry when it comes to weight loss. Just recently, it has become a common ingredient in all the best supplements on the market. But, what is CLA, and how can it really help people with their weight loss efforts?
What Is CLA?
Many people think that CLA is something that has just been discovered, but the truth is that the benefits of CLA are just being discovered, whereas the fatty acid has been known about for a long time.
CLA is found in products that come from ruminants, such as yogurt, cheese, or beef. It is a fatty acid that is, in part, a Trans fatty acid. But unlike other Trans fatty acids, it has benefits for different facets of health, including weight loss.
Obviously it is not a fatty acid that vegans will be excited about taking. But it is a naturally occurring fat found in dairy products derived from ruminants; therefore, some vegetarians who eat dairy products may be willing to try out a supplement that includes CLA in the ingredient list.
How CLA Helps With Weight Loss: The Two Big Ways
There are two different ways that CLA helps with weight loss, and they add up to better results, whether you are purposely trying to lose weight through dieting or not.
1. Promotes Fat Loss
The truth is that CLA attacks body fat, not necessary weight. Moreover, studies have shown that CLA targets abdominal fat over other fat on the body. One study found that participants who took CLA at the dosage of 3.4 grams for 12 weeks, experienced a significant reduction in body fat mass, as opposed to the placebo group. When you reduce body fat, there is a good chance you will lose body weight as well, unless you build up a lot of muscle.
CLA has been shown to reduce body fat without affecting the muscle, which has many bodybuilders excited about the fatty acid. Most people want to keep the muscle on their body as they lose the fat.
“CLA supplementation was also shown to improve the lean mass to body fat ratio…” – BodyBuilding.com
2. Increases Metabolism
In various studies, CLA has been shown to increase metabolic rate, which has a very positive influence on the ability to lose weight. When the metabolic rate increases, the ability to burn off more calories also increases. Since weight loss is essentially about calories in and calories out, and creating a calorie deficit, this will benefit anyone who wants to lose weight while sustaining a healthy and nutritional diet.
“…CLA significantly increased metabolic rate.” – National Center for Biotechnology Information
Who Should Avoid CLA Supplements?
While CLA supplements are considered safe, because they are a natural supplement, there are some people who may want to avoid taking the supplement. For the most part, if you are a relatively healthy individual, then taking CLA should be fine. Reports of fatigue, diarrhea, and stomach upset have been reported; however, these cases are not very common.
However, if you are pregnant, under the age of 18, obese, or living with a disease, you may want to avoid taking CLA. There has not been a lot of research on the effects of CLA on people in these categories, and it is better safe than sorry.