The Super Fat Burning Nutrient
Wild game and naturally grass-fed animals have been a staple part of many cultures diets for years. The meat and dairy products from these animals contains an incredible array of nutrients. The newest super-nutrient found in these animal products is Conjugated Linoleic Acid (CLA). CLA has been shown to have super fat burning and anti-cancer properties.
Grass-fed lamb, goat, & cattle were a powerful form of wealth and a currency used throughout the bible by the Israelites and many surrounding civilizations. The ancient Israelites who consumed 50% of their diet from these animals were known to be one of the healthiest cultures in the world. These animals fed solely on natural grasses and green plants.
Grass-Fed Diet Enriches the CLA Content:
The natural vegetation based diet creates an outstandingly healthy animal that boasts mega doses of super-nutrients within their meat and dairy. This includes a rich array of omega-3 fatty acids, healthy proteins, vitamin E, B12, thiamine, riboflavin, creatine, iron & zinc. Perhaps, the most important nutrient of all though is CLA.
Back in 1979, University of Wisconsin researchers found that beef extract had a significant anti-carcinogenic function (1, 2, 3, 4, 5). It wasn’t until 1987 that scientists discovered it was the CLA that provided these benefits. It was shown that CLA helps to upregulate the tumor suppressing gene PTPRG.
Michael Pariza is the famed scientist who discovered CLA. He says, “few anti-carcinogens, and certainly no other known fatty acids, are as effective as CLA in inhibiting carcinogenesis.” A diet with as little as 0.5% CLA has been shown to reduce tumor growth by over 50% (6).
CLA Suppresses Inflammatory Molecules:
One of the powerful attributes of CLA is its ability to suppress inflammatory prostaglandins such as PGE2 (7). Blocking this substance reduces inflammation in the joints, muscles, bones, organs and brain. This allows for stronger and healthier brain and body. Chicks and rats fed CLA rich butterfat had significantly greater bone growth than animals fed other fats (8).
CLA has a powerful effect on enhancing cellular insulin sensitivity & stabilizing blood sugar. In fact, researchers say it mimics the effect of synthetic diabetic drugs without any negative side effects. Testing has shown that consuming CLA for longer than 8 weeks has significant effect on circulating insulin and blood glucose (9,10).
Additionally, CLA speeds up metabolism and increases the process of fat breakdown. Many researchers have hypothesized that a lack of CLA in the modern diet is a significant factor in the obesity epidemic.
Grass-fed Beef and Dairy are Rich in CLA:
Meat and dairy products from grass-fed animals can produce 300-500% more CLA than those of cattle fed the usual diet of hay and grains (11). Organic eggs are also rich CLA. Despite the fact that CLA is a polyunsaturated fat, it has been shown to survive the elevated temperatures encountered during frying.
CLA is found in the most significant amounts within the bone marrow of wild or grass-fed animals. Bone marrow has been used by nearly every carnivorous culture around the world in soups, stews, and other dishes.
Bone marrow is the site of blood cell formation in the body and plays a huge role in oxygen carrying capacity and natural immunity. Eating bone marrow from wild game and/or humanely raised grass-fed animals is renowned for its immune boosting capacity. The high concentrations of CLA certainly play a role in this.
Supplemental CLA is Not Recommended:
Supplement manufactures have been able to create a synthetic version of CLA. This product has been widely promoted due to the effects of CLA on weight loss, muscle building, cardiovascular health and immune regulation. Unfortunately, there is no magic pill here. Anything that is synthetically derived is unnatural and therefore not innately absorbed and utilized effectively in the body.
Synthetic CLA supplementation has been shown to promote insulin resistance, raising glucose levels and reducing HDL cholesterol in some studies (12). The best advice is to look for high quality sources of natural CLA from grass-fed beef, dairy and pasture-raised eggs. You can find excellent grass-fed beef and wild game that is rich in CLA through US Wellness Meats here
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- Pariza MW, Park Y, Cook ME. Mechanismsof action of conjugated linoleic acid: evidence and Proc Soc Exp Biol Med. 2000 Jan;223(1):8-13. PMID: 10632956
- De La Torre A, Debiton E, Juanéda P, Durand D, Chardigny JM, Barthomeuf C, Bauchart D, Gruffat D. Beef conjugated linoleic acid isomers reduce human cancer cell growth even when associated with other beef fatty acids. Br J Nutr. 2006 Feb;95(2):346-52. PMID: 16469152
- De la Torre A, Debiton E, Durand D, Chardigny JM, Berdeaux O, Loreau O, Barthomeuf C, Bauchart D, Gruffat D. Conjugatedlinoleic acid isomers and their conjugated derivatives inhibit growth of human cancer cell lines. Anticancer Res. 2005. PMID: 16309181
- Agatha G, Voigt A, Kauf E, Zintl F. Conjugated linoleic acid modulation of cell membrane in leukemia cells. Cancer Lett. 2004 Jun 8;209(1):87-103. PMID: 15145524
- Beppu F, Hosokawa M, Tanaka L, Kohno H, Tanaka T, Miyashita K. J Nutr Biochem. Potent inhibitory effect of trans9, trans11 isomer of conjugated linoleic acid on the growth of human colon cancer cells. 2006 Dec;17(12):830-6. PMID: 16563722
- Hubbard NE, Lim D, Erickson KL. Conjugated linoleic acid alters matrix metalloproteinases of metastatic mouse mammary tumor cells. J Nutr. 2007 Jun;137(6):1423-9. PMID: 17513401
- Lee KW, Lee HJ, Cho HY, Kim YJ. Role of the conjugated linoleic acid in the prevention of cancer. Crit Rev Food Sci Nutr. 2005;45(2):135-44. Review. PMID: 15941017
- Cook ME, Miller CC, Park Y, Pariza M. Immune modulation by altered nutrient metabolism: nutritional control of immune-induced growth depression. Poult Sci. 1993 Jul;72(7):1301-5. PMID: 8346156
- Brown JM, McIntosh MK. Conjugated linoleic acid in humans: regulation of adiposity and insulin sensitivity. J Nutr. 2003 Oct;133(10):3041-6. PMID: 14519781
- Whigham LD, Watras AC, Schoeller DA. Efficacy of conjugated linoleic acid for reducing fat mass: a meta-analysis in humans. Am J Clin Nutr. 2007 May;85(5):1203-11. PMID: 17490954
- Conjugated linoleic acid. Wikipedia. Link Here
- McCrorie TA, Keaveney EM, Wallace JM, Binns N, Livingstone MB. Human health effects of conjugated linoleic acid from milk and supplements. Nutr Res Rev. 2011 Dec;24(2):206-27. PMID: 22296934