Conjugated Linoleic Acid: Benefits, Dosage, Side Effects, Drug Interactions, and Other Important Information


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The term “Conjugated Linoleic Acid” (CLA) refers to a class of polyunsaturated fatty acids that are mostly prevalent in the meat and dairy products of ruminant animals. Conjugated double bonds, which are double bonds divided by a single bond, are what give CLA its distinctive structural characteristics. The two most prevalent isomers in the diet, cis-9, trans-11, and trans-10, cis-12, are linked to various positive health impacts. This article endeavors to provide helpful information to assist those who are considering using CLA for their health needs and goals.

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Conjugated Linoleic Acid: Benefits, Dosage, Side Effects, Drug Interactions, and Other Important Information is an original (NootropicsPlanet) article.

Nature of Conjugated Linoleic Acid

CLA is made up of Linoleic acid’s positional and geometric isomers. Linoleic acid is a polyunsaturated omega-6 fatty acid.  It also comes with two double bonds that are arranged in the cis direction. These bonds are then isomerized to produce CLA, which has ‘cis’ and ‘trans’ isomers with distinct spatial arrangements of the double bonds. Trans isomers contain hydrogens on the opposite side of the carbon chain from cis isomers. Cis isomers have hydrogens on the same side of the carbon chain. The bioactivity and biological consequences of these isomers depend on their different structures.

Health Benefits of Conjugated Linoleic Acid

Due to its possible health advantages, CLA has generated a great deal of attention. The alleged health advantages include improved cardiovascular health, immune system stimulation, anti-cancer capabilities, and weight control.

Weight Control:

Within different scientific and medical settings, CLA shows the power to affect energy metabolism, resulting in a decrease in body fat and an increase in lean muscle mass. The affects in energy metabolism are those that are particularly connected to altering adipocyte development and lipid metabolism is the trans-10, cis-12 isomer. This situation results in the presence of less triglyceride buildup and less adipocyte growth, which helps with weight reduction.

Cancer-preventive Qualities:

The possible anti-carcinogenic properties of CLA have been documented in experimental research. The research indicates that CLA prevents the expansion and division of several cancer cell types, possibly via causing apoptosis and repressing angiogenesis.

Heart Health:

CLA additionally possesses the potential to improve heart health by decreasing atherosclerosis, lowering LDL (bad) cholesterol, and raising HDL (good) cholesterol.

Immune System Boosting:

The immune system may be modulated by CLA. According to studies, it could contribute to improving the immunological response, perhaps by regulating cytokine production and lymphocyte proliferation.

Weight management.

Chemistry of CLA

The CLA family has a variety of isomers. Trans-10, cis-12 (t10, c12) and trans-9, trans-11 (c9, t11) CLA are the two main isomers. The word “conjugated” denotes the presence of a single bond separating the double bonds. In the trans configuration, the hydrogen atoms are on the opposite sides of the carbon chain from where they are in the cis configuration. The bioactivity and metabolic interactions of CLA inside the human body are greatly influenced by these structural differences between isomers.

Physiological Mechanisms of Action

The diverse effects of CLA on the body are lipid metabolism, immunological response, and cellular proliferation.

Metabolism of Lipids:

CLA’s ability to regulate weight is likely due to its impact on lipid metabolism. Particularly the t10, c12 isomer displays efficacy in affecting lipid metabolism, lowering adipocyte (fat cell) development and proliferation. Additionally, this isomer increases the production of enzymes that break down fats and decreases the expression of enzymes that store lipids, reducing the buildup of triglycerides. The decreased buildup encourages the loss of body fat while gaining lean muscular mass.

Immune System:

CLA shows potential in positively affecting the body’s immunological response. Although the precise process is not completely understood, the current consensus is that the process includes controlling the synthesis of cytokines and prostaglandins, two crucial elements of the immune response. Data reveals CLA’s contribution to the improvement in the immune system being linked to the c9, t11 isomer.

Proliferation and Apoptosis of Cells:

CLA has the capacity to control cell growth and trigger apoptosis.  This capacity is particularly strong when in the presence of malignant cells, and it is this capacity of CLA that may very well be the source of its putative anti-cancer effects. Several cancer cell lines have been seen to proliferate less when CLA is present. The arachidonic acid cascade may be affected by the c9, t11 isomer, which would result in less eicosanoids being produced.  Such chemicals are ones that encourage cellular growth and inflammation.

Immune system.

Optimal Dosage of Conjugated Linoleic Acid

The findings of human trials on the ideal CLA dose have been inconsistent. The majority advise consuming 3 to 6 grams per day to regulate weight. To get individualized dose recommendations, visit with your healthcare expert because the effective dosage may vary depending on personal characteristics.

Side Effects of Conjugated Linoleic Acid

Though typically well-tolerated, gastrointestinal problems such diarrhea, nausea, and bloating are possible side effects linked to CLA administration. Some studies have also revealed that sustained high-dose use may promote insulin resistance and liver fat buildup, which might have a detrimental effect on liver and metabolic health.


Potential Substance Interactions with Conjugated Linoleic Acid

Little information is available on the possible interactions of CLA with other drugs. However, care is advised while using drugs that alter blood lipid levels concurrently, such as statins or other cholesterol-lowering medications, due to their impact on lipid metabolism.

Responsible Use of Conjugated Linoleic Acid

While CLA may have health advantages, it is important for you to utilize it appropriately. This entails seeking specific guidance from a healthcare professional, following dose guidelines, keeping an eye out for any side effects, and taking into account any potential interactions between CLA and other dietary supplements or drugs.

Due to its novel biochemistry and possible health benefits, Conjugated Linoleic Acid has received attention in the domains of nutrition and medicine. Although there is evidence that it has anti-cancer characteristics, advantages for cardiovascular health, and boosts the immune system, more thorough study is required to validate these benefits and determine the best doses. For the appropriate use of this nutritional supplement, it is also essential for you to be informed of any potential adverse effects and interactions.

Conjugated Linoleic Acid:


CLA can improve your immune system and contribute to the lifestyle choices you are making to achieve and maintain a weight’s that healthy for you.  CLA additionally could be a part of your lifestyle choices to prevent and/or treat cancer.  This substance can improve heart health and positively affect metabolism.  There is not much information available regarding its interactions with medications and supplements. 

Please engage in candid, ongoing communication with your health care specialists regarding your usage of CLA. What dosage is right for you depends on numerous factors including any pre-existing conditions and is best determined in tandem with trusted health care professionals.  When administered and taken in moderation, CLA has a lot of potential to assist in the amelioration of several critical health problems. 



  1. “Conjugated Linoleic Acid in Adipose Tissue and Risk of Myocardial Infarction.” Retrieved From:
  2. “Modulation of inflammation and immunity by dietary conjugated linoleic acid.” Retrieved From:
  3. “Conjugated Linoleic Acid Effects on Cancer, Obesity, and Atherosclerosis: A Review of Pre-Clinical and Human Trials with Current Perspectives.” Retrieved from:

Important Note: The information contained in this article is for general informational purposes only, and should not be construed as health or medical advice, nor is it intended to diagnose, prevent, treat, or cure any disease or health condition. Before embarking on any diet, fitness regimen, or program of nutritional supplementation, it is advisable to consult your healthcare professional in order to determine its safety and probable efficacy in terms of your individual state of health.

Regarding Nutritional Supplements Or Other Non-Prescription Health Products: If any nutritional supplements or other non-prescription health products are mentioned in the foregoing article, any claims or statements made about them have not been evaluated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, and such nutritional supplements or other health products are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.


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