What Are CLA Benefits?


Quick Answer

CLA, otherwise referred to as conjugated linoleic acid, is a group of chemicals found in linoleic acid. It's commonly cited in the treatment of cancer and atherosclerosis, or hardening of the arteries, as well as body building, obesity and weight loss caused by chronic disease. CLA has also been cited for limiting food allergy reactions. Per WebMD, CLA is thought to improve immune function and help reduce body fat deposits.

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Full Answer

WebMD explains that common dietary sources of CLA include dairy and beef products, with the average diet supplying 15 to 174 milligrams of CLA daily. Some research suggests a reduction in colon and rectal cancer in women whose diets are high in CLA. There also appears to be correlation between CLA-rich diets and a reduction in overall body fat, but CLA does not appear to reduce body weight.

According to WebMD, preliminary evidence also suggests a possible link between CLA and the prevention of breast cancer as women who have passed menopause and have a higher dietary intake of CLA, especially cheese, seem to have a lower risk of breast cancer development; however, more evidence is needed to substantiate these claims. It is uncertain whether dietary supplements of CLA hold the same potential health benefits as those found naturally in diets high in dairy and beef products.

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