How Does CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) Help In Weight Loss? Let’s Find Out!

Weight Loss


Published on: 10-Nov-2023


10 min read




Lalita Vishwakarma


How Does CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) Help In Weight Loss? Let’s Find Out!

How Does CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) Help In Weight Loss? Let’s Find Out!

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Do you know that fats can be good for our health and can benefit weight loss? You might be wondering how consuming fat can aid weight loss. Conjugated linoleic acid is one of the good fatty acids that works as an excellent fat burner. 

CLA (Conjugated linoleic acid) is a natural fatty acid in meat and dairy and is widely linked with several health benefits, including weight loss. 

This article will cover everything you need to know, including recommended doses, how it can aid in your weight loss plan, and its benefits and potential side effects. So, continue reading to learn about CLA (Conjugated linoleic acid).

Table Of Contents

  1. What is Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA)?

  2. What Is The Source of CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid)?

  3. Role of CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) For Weight Loss

  4. What Are Conjugated Linoleic Acid Benefits?

  5. What Are CLA Side Effects?

  6. Exploring Conjugated Linoleic Acid Foods

  7. The Final Say

  8. FAQs

  9. References 

What Is A Conjugated Linoleic Acid?

Have you heard that fats can provide benefits? Well, Conjugated linoleic acid is one of the omega-6 fatty acids enriched with health benefits. You can find CLA (Conjugated linoleic acid) in dairy products, beef, and vegetable oils.

Athletes and bodybuilders use CLA as a supplement for weight loss, muscle building, and energy. There are approximately 28 different types of CLA based on their double bond arrangement. It is important to recognise that despite being a transfat, CLA offers health benefits.

What Is The Source of CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid)?

The amount of CLA present in dairy and beef varies depending on the animal's diet, whether they eat grass or grains. It is here to note that the CLA that we get from supplements is less healthy as it is chemically made from vegetable oils. The linolic acid we get naturally from food sources is the actual one that supports our health.

The main dietary sources of CLA are:

  • Dairy products: Dairy products, such as milk, cheese, and yoghurt, are also good sources of CLA. 

  • Lamb and goat meat: Lamb and goat meat are also good sources of CLA.

  • Vegetable oils: Some vegetable oils, such as safflower and sunflower oil, contain small amounts of CLA. However, the CLA content of these oils is much lower than that of animal products.

Also Read: Top 6 Healthy Cooking Oils

Role of CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) For Weight Loss

Weight loss is a common issue nowadays, and people dealing with obesity or overweight are continuously in search of either weight loss supplements or effective weight loss diet plans. 

CLA for weight loss can be an easy and effective option because many studies have shown the positive impact of CLA on fat burn. It alters the body’s metabolism and helps to break down and burn more fat cells.

A study by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed that women lose 9% of body fat in one year without changing their lifestyle or eating habits, aside from supplementing with CLA.   

Besides boosting the metabolism, CLA enhances insulin resistance by inhibiting the growth of fat cells. The right CLA dosage for weight loss depends on factors such as age, gender, lifestyle, etc. You can use CLA supplements for weight loss, but for more effective results, complement it with regular exercise and a healthy diet

What Are Conjugated Linoleic Acid Benefits?

The conjugated linoleic acid benefits are as follows:

1. CLA Boosts The Immune System   

CLA helps in boosting immunity and thus reduces the risk of infections. It helps in improving bone mass and inflammatory responses in your body. It can also work as a potential detoxifier and may play a role in boosting the liver function. 

An investigation conducted in 2020 and reported in the journal Cellular Immunology discovered that supplementing with CLA increased the generation of T cells and antibodies, which in turn provided protection against infection.

2. CLA Prevents The Growth Of Cancerous Cells    

A good fat burner also inhibits the growth of cancerous cells in the body, and if you consume a diet rich in CLA, you can reduce the overall risk of cancer. A 2012 study published in the journal Nutrition and Cancer found that CLA inhibited the growth of prostate cancer cells in vitro.

Actually, intense inflammation means lesser oxidative stress, which is directly linked to low cancer risks, and CLA provides health benefits by lowering the inflammation in the body.  

3. Reduces Allergy And Asthma Symptoms   

Seasonal changes bring allergies; therefore, consuming a diet incorporating CLA (Conjugated linoleic acid) supplements can prevent seasonal allergy symptoms. The ability of CLA to control inflammation makes it an effective treatment option for asthma-related symptoms.

What Are CLA Side Effects?

The side effects of CLA (Conjugated linoleic acid) include the following:

  • Diarrhoea 

  • Stomach Ache

  • Abdominal Cramps Or Bloating

  • Dizziness

  • Headache

  • Dry Skin 

  • Increased Thirst

  • Nausea

  • Loss Of Appetite

  • Vomiting

Exploring Conjugated Linoleic Acid Foods

The foods that are enriched with CLA include the following:

Food Source

CLA Content


Dairy Products


Whole milk, butter, and cheese (from grass-fed cows) may contain CLA, consumed in moderation due to saturated fat content



Select lean cuts to reduce saturated fat

Goat Meat


Generally leaner meat

Natural Yogurt


Some natural yoghourts may contain CLA; check labels



Certain cheeses (e.g. cheddar, parmesan) may contain CLA, consumed in moderation due to saturated fat content



Grass-fed butter may have higher CLA levels; use sparingly due to high saturated fat content

Cottage Cheese


Cottage cheese is a natural source of CLA

The Final Say

CLA (Conjugated linoleic acid) is an essential fatty acid that helps lose weight, improve metabolism, and reduce inflammation. It is often ignored in comparison to other dietary supplements, but including this in your diet will greatly support your weight loss goals. 

You can incorporate CLA-rich foods like cottage cheese, butter, natural yoghurt, mutton, etc., into your diet to take its benefits. 


1. Where can I buy conjugated linoleic acid?   

Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) is available online and in natural food and nutrition stores.   

2. How fast does conjugated linoleic acid work?   

The activity of conjugated linoleic acid may vary from person to person. You can anticipate the best results within 1- 6 months of use. 

3. What is the CLA dosage for weight loss?

The recommended daily dose of CLA is 3.2 - 6.4 grams. Many studies also suggest a daily dose of 6 grams. But, exceeding the limit may result in serious side effects.

4. Is CLA good for weight loss?

Yes, CLA (Conjugated linoleic acid) acid boosts the metabolism and helps lose weight.

5. What are the benefits of CLA?

The benefits of CLA include the following:

  • It helps to reduce the symptoms of allergy and asthma.

  • It helps in weight loss.

  • It helps in lowering the blood sugar levels.

  • It helps to prevent cancer.

  • It helps to improve immunity.

6. Which foods are good sources of CLA?

The foods that are good sources of CLA include the following:

  • Mutton

  • Goat Meat

  • Natural Yogurt

  • CheesesButter

  • Cottage Cheese


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