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CLA Conjugated Linoleic Acid: a Fat Burner for Weight Loss?

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Publisehed in April 2004

Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA) is a fatty acid found naturally in meat and dairy food. Conjugated Linoleic Acid supplements currently sold as a fat burner for weight loss is derived from sunflower oil. There is some evidence, although limited, that conjugated linoleic acid supplements can increase fat loss in overweight people. It is uncertain how Conjugated Linoleic Acid help lose body fat. One study found that CLA may help burn and lose fat by increasing energy expenditure.

There are very few clinical trials of Conjugated Linoleic Acid in overweight people. These studies showed that Conjugated Linoleic Acid supplements did result in fat loss, but not body weight loss . A Swedish study published in 2001 showed that of it helped burn fat by decreasing abdominal fat in overweight men. Another Dutch study published in July 2003 showed that Conjugated Linoleic Acid supplements help maintain lean muscle tissue after weight loss.

Conjugated Linoleic Acid Key message: Research on Conjugated Linoleic Acid weight loss supplements in human is still very limited. What we know is that the effect of fat loss is more convincing in animal studies than in human studies; some human trials did found that CLA can reduce body fat. Safety and toxicity levels have not yet established. In addition, side effects have not been well-documented. If you are taking Conjugated Linoleic Acid supplements, please make sure to talk to your doctor.


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