Your ultimate science-based guide to the benefits and risks of CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid)

Written by , Published: , Updated: March 31, 2017

Hey, and welcome to my science-based guide to getting the most out of CLA.

As you'll see, plenty of research has already been done on CLA.

CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid): Your science-based guide

From health benefits (and some side effects) to weight loss, this guide covers it all.

Before we dive in, take a quick look at what you can expect to learn from this guide:

What is CLA and how you can benefit from it

Conjugated Linoleic Acid, or just CLA for short, a healthy kind of "good" fat that helps your body increase metabolic rates. In other words, it helps your body convert food into energy more efficiently. It also boosts your immune system and keeps your cholesterol at normal levels.

Besides its many health benefits, CLA is one of the most popular weight loss supplement on the market.

(If you're interested, you can read my article in which I use modern science to expose fake CLA supplement reviews.)

Why is CLA so popular? Several studies showed that CLA speeds up fat burn and helps build muscles.

CLA is an essential fat, meaning your body can't produce it, but you can find it in some foods and dietary supplements.

So let's take a look at one of the biggest issues you could run into when taking CLA.

The #1 health problem you could run into with CLA

Science proved that CLA from animal sources helps prevent cancer, reduce body fat and build muscles. CLA supplements are also presented as the magical weight loss pills that can help you achieve that lean body you desire so much.

But what most people don't know is that there are at least 28 different forms of CLA. The problem is, they can have a completely different effect on your body.

For example, taking CLA pills could boost your odds of developing fatty liver disease[1]. But on the other hand, eating CLA-rich foods could actually help prevent cancer[2].

This is the most important difference between CLA-rich foods and CLA supplements that weight loss industry "forgets" to mention.

Here's why...

Products like pills or syrups containing CLA are still unlikely to do you much good because these lab-made CLA supplements aren't made from animal foods. Look at the labels and you will see that CLA supplements are made from unhealthy vegetable oils.

That's the reason why you can't expect to benefit from taking CLA supplements. So keep this in mind BEFORE you decide to buy a CLA supplement.

TIP: CLA-rich food have many health benefits, while taking CLA supplements can be risky for your health. Choose natural sources of CLA instead of taking CLA supplements. If you want to get rid of some extra body fat, click here and try the science-proved fat burning inexpensive foods and ingredients you can buy at your local store.

The healthiest sources of CLA on the planet

Scientists found out that best sources of natural CLA can be found in milk, cheese, and meats. The richest CLA meat is beef, but it is also found in lamb and veal and in pork, chicken, and turkey. Dairy with the richest content of CLA is butter.

You can see how much CLA can be found in natural foods in next table[3]:

MeatsCLA (mg/g fat)
Fresh ground beef4.3
Beef round2.9
Beef frank3.3
Beef smoked sausage3.8
PoultryCLA (mg/g fat)
Fresh ground turkey2.5
SeafoodCLA (mg/g fat)
Lake trout0.5
Dairy ProductsCLA (mg/g fat)
Homogenized milk5.5
Sour cream4.6
Plain yogurt4.8
Ice cream3.6
Sharp cheddar cheese3.6
Mozzarella cheese4.9
Colby cheese6.1
Cottage cheese4.5
Reduced fat swiss6.7
Am. Processed cheese5.0
Cheez whiz5.0
Vegetable OilsCLA (mg/g fat)
Safflower Oil0.7

This is why you can't get enough CLA from most foods

If you eat a "nutritionally complete" diet, you'll get enough CLA to cover your body's needs for it.

But if you wanted to enjoy the extra health benefits of CLA, some studies have shown that you need to get in at least 1.5 g of CLA per day.

In America, the average intake is only about 0.15 g per day for women and 0.21 g for men[4], which is obviously too little CLA.

The problem many people don't get enough CLA from food is because their meals are mostly made up of boxed, frozen and fast foods.

TIP: Eat more natural, unprocessed (never frozen) CLA-rich foods.

What can you do to get more CLA from food?

To get sufficient CLA from food you would have to eat a lot of fat, which may be a problem for you. So, even if you ate lots of fatty CLA-rich foods, it would still be hard for you to get in even 1 g of CLA a day.

As you can see, the best sources of CLA are very fattening. For example, to eat 1.5 g of CLA, you'd have to eat around 300 g of butter or as much as 1 kg of cheese.

Despite the fact that you may enjoy eating cheese, it's safe to say you don't like it enough to eat a kilo of cheese a day.

That's the reason why weight loss and health industry started producing CLA supplements with higher amounts of CLA content for people to get the right doses for health benefits and weight loss.

TIP: While everyone keeps focusing on unnatural, unhealthy and potentially dangerous pills, chemicals and substances, modern science already knows how to use affordable, common household foods and ingredients to boost your fat burn rate. If you want to start using healthier and more effective alternatives to CLA, simply click here

How to reduce the number of calories in CLA-rich foods

Content of CLA in foods depends on the season of the year, what the animals were fed with and the animal's age.

Grass is rich in linoleic acid and the special enzymes in animals' digestive systems convert linoleic acid to CLA.

Because of this, milk from grass fed cows can have as much as 500% more CLA than milk from grain fed cows.

TIP: Free-range meats are healthier than other kinds of meats. Ask your local butcher for beef that has come from grass-fed livestock or look at the labels if you're buying meat at your local supermarket. Whenever you can, choose grass-fed meat over grain-fed meat.

Can you take CLA to get rid of that stubborn body fat?

If you're interested in taking CLA to speed up your fat burn rate, you'll be glad to know that a lot of research has already been done on this subject.

At first, several animal studies confirmed CLA can be effective for weight loss. Naturally, this grabbed the interest of many scientists in the field of weight loss.

As a result, we now have more than 30 human studies and we understand the specific conditions under which CLA can actually help you burn off that embarrassing body fat.

If you're interested in finding out more about what it actually takes to activate the weight loss benefits of CLA, follow this link.

TIP: If you don't want to waste your money for weight loss product that don't bring the results you want, try using the natural fat burning ingredients you probably already have in your kitchen. Go here.

Actionable takeaways

As you saw, not all CLA is created equal. According to science, you'd do best to avoid CLA in supplement form and stick with CLA-rich foods.

With the richest source of CLA being meats and dairy, it's tough to get in enough CLA without also getting in too many calories.

If you want to up your CLA intake with natural foods (but without having to eat too many calories), you should stick with grass-fed meats.

Because research has shown, that grass-fed meat can have as much as 5 times more CLA than grain-fed meats.

David Brown

Hi, I'm David. This is what I'm best known for:

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