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Home / Blog / What’s CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) All About?
What’s CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) All About?
Supplements and medicines can sometimes be hard to understand. They have big words to describe them, and fancy science and research proving (or disproving) their case.
So with conjugated linoleic acid, we’ll call it “CLA” from now on, what’s it all about? Is it something you’d like to add to your diet? Does it have any severe risks?
Take a minute to learn some more about CLA and what it can do for you.
First, What is CLA?
CLA actually refers to a group of chemicals found within linoleic acid. You find CLA in red meat that comes from cattle. The best natural source of CLA comes from grass-fed cattle. Cattle who consume only grass, versus those who eat feed from other plants, have 3-5 times more CLA in their bodies.
So, it’s completely natural. However, if you avoid red meat for other reasons, your CLA intake will of course be short of what you should have.
Why Do People Take CLA? What’s It Do?
The most popular use for CLA is to lower body fat. Research supports this claim. And, it also shows that the benefits increase with regular exercise.
But, that’s not all CLA does.
It currently may:
Reduce tumor risk by 50%
Reduce your risk for breast, lung, skin, stomach, and colorectal cancer
Helps prevent asthma
Lowers your risk of cardiovascular disease
Lowers high blood pressure
Fights high cholesterol and triglycerides
Reduces your risk of osteoporosis
Strengthens your immune system
Does It Have Any Risks?
A few. Though, none are known to be devastating. CLA can cause an upset stomach, nausea, diarrhea, and fatigue. In diabetics, it can worsen insulin resistance.
Like many supplements, the full range of negative side-effects isn’t known. Therefore, pregnant women and children of any age should avoid CLA, just in case.
Also, you should be very careful with CLA if you take any other medicines regularly. Not all interactions are known.
As in any other situation, you’re wise to let your doctor know you’re considering CLA and what the possible risks might be.
How Much CLA Should You Take?
There’s no officially recommended dosage. However, most studies recommend 3400 milligrams. Just remember to factor in what you may already get on a daily basis through red meat.