Review of Can the CLA (Conjugated Linoleic Acid) in Safflower Oil Help You Lose Weight?
CLA Safflower Oil, as the name implies, is produced from Safflowers, the world’s richest Conjugated Linoleic Acid (or CLA) source.
Some researchers have found that this kind of oil can be integral in body fat breakdown, as well as the increase in muscle mass, which of course made CLA Safflower Oil very popular within the fitness crowd.
The combination of fat loss and lean muscle mass gains is the ideal that most users strive for, and CLA Safflower Oil allows this process to not only happen – but happen naturally.
Now, to avoid any misconceptions, Safflower Oil and CLA are both found in CLA Safflower Oil but they are not the same substances, even though they are related and usually presented together as a unit. To realize the differences and the similarities we will go further and discuss the building elements of CLA Safflower Oil and also check what the side effects there are (if any), how doses work et cetera.
Firstly we will discuss the ingredients separately, both CLA and safflower oil respectively with their pros and cons, then go over the reviews of clinical studies about CLA Safflower Oil and its ingredients and finally, provide our conclusion and verdict at the end of this review.
The relationship between CLA and Safflower Oil found in CLA Safflower Oil
Most of us have already heard about Omega-6 fatty acids at some point in our life in some way, shape or form. This is the case because The American Heart Association, among others, has suggested that there have been several clinical studies which have shown this kind of fatty acids to have a good impact on heart health in general.
They have also advocated people to include them into their diets and to do so responsibly – by having moderate amounts on a regular basis. This can easily be done by incorporating CLA Safflower Oil into your daily supplement routine. Following this announcement by The American Heart Association, numerous studies were undertaken in order to test the effects of Omega-6 Acids, as well as polyunsaturated fats.
For example, a study which was done at the OSU (Ohio State University) showed some concern about the use of such supplements in diabetic, obese, menopausal women who previously did not need any insulin injections on a daily basis. The study group contained 36 women who were divided into two separate groups with each group taking a daily dose of 6.4 grams of fatty acid for a period of 16 weeks. This was done without changing anything in their daily routines or altering their usual medication routines.
The results – After 16 weeks, the effects of the supplementation were obvious with subjects in the group taking CLA supplementation similar to that found in CLA Safflower Oil showing a solid drop in the BMI (Body Mass Index) indicator with an average of half a point – which means that the subjects have experienced a 3.2% drop in terms of their total body fat.
Not only that, but the subjects which were taking the safflower oil supplements similar to CLA Safflower Oil experienced a significant drop in body fat in their trunk area. There was no significant change in their general body fat level, even though an increase was noted in the muscle tissue percentage. The group taking Safflower Oil supplementation similar to CLA Safflower Oil also had a drop in blood sugar, with 15 points on average.
No other significant changes have been noted in both groups, other than the increase in the hormone production of Adiponectin in the Safflower Oil supplemented group. Adiponectin is the hormone which is responsible for the fat burning speed in the metabolism.
Even though these results showed a lot of promise and quickly got introduced to the market of supplements, a few things should be taken into consideration. The first big one is concerned with the excess fat and namely how and why it dropped if the workout routine did not undergo any alterations.
The difference and the increase of Adiponectin production was somewhat concerning as it was possible that the excess body fat had the chance of being deposited in the muscle tissue and more dangerously liver, which could cause diabetes to those who did not already have it, make it more severe to those that did, or cause other kinds of disorders in liver function.
To sum up, what this study concluded is that the benefits from CLA as well as Safflower Oil are truly groundbreaking and exciting, making the case for everyday use of CLA Safflower Oil. The side effects of the products such as CLA Safflower Oil were not found, and there was no inclination that there would be any after the time period of the study which was 16 weeks.
In the section that follows we will be taking a closer look at Safflower Oil as well as CLA which can both be found in CLA Safflower Oil.
Conjugated Linoleic Acids – CLA as found in CLA Safflower Oil
When researching CLA and CLA Safflower Oil one thing becomes noticeable – they have not gotten too much attention in the research area. However, even though there are not too many studies about the compounds, there is sufficient information on them concerning their function and use within the area of supplementation.
One of the main ingredients in CLA Safflower Oil, CLA, belong to a group of linoleic acids which are naturally produced by our organism after certain dietary groups such as meat or dairy products become broken down in our intestines or stomach by bacteria. These isomers are similar and different at the same time. They are different when it comes to their chemical structure and similar since they can have identical chemical formula on a molecular level. Conjugated Linoleic Acids are formally classified as cis-fatty acid as well as trans-fatty acid, which is unusual in biochemistry.
CLA become popular in the late seventies of the previous century, more precisely 1979, after a study conducted on mice implied that fatty acids were responsible for visibly reducing the size of tumors which were chemically induced. After this claim, the number of studies done on the subject kept rising. Even though nearly 40 years passed since then, the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) has classified CLA as being safe for general use in 2008. This, however, did not stop supplements which contained CLA like CLA Safflower Oil being produced and used, with them only rising in popularity since the eighties onwards.
Let us take this moment to discuss the confusion of terms when it comes to CLA and Safflower Oil, even though they’re both found in CLA Safflower Oil. Safflower oil is comprised mostly from oleic acid, which is a mono-saturated acid, with it making up more than 75% of its content. Safflower oil only contains linoleic acid in traces – with about 0.7mg per gram.
Differences between Safflower Oil and Conjugated Linoleic Acid
With this information, it is easy to see how safflower oil and CLA can be put into the same category, even though they do not have much in common nor do they have a similar effect on our bodies, meaning they should not be used as a replacement for each other. That is exactly why we have made an effort in distinguishing them from the beginning of this review, even if they make up CLA Safflower Oil together – they have different effects even though they both result in a body fat drop when consumed.
When consumed, CLA which can be found in CLA Safflower Oil becomes naturally synthesized by our bodies from the linoleic acid with the help of bacteria which live in the intestine. There are several conditions which can make this synthesis unable to happen – from things such as gluten intolerance to raised acidic levels among other digestive diseases. This makes it easy to realize why CLA and CLA Safflower Oil should be included in our regular dietary supplementation regimen.
In the beginning, these kinds of supplements like CLA Safflower Oil were being marketed and sold as natural supplements meant to combat cancer, stemming from the research done on mice which we mentioned above, even though this kind of connection is frown upon, as the tumors in humans and mice are not the same. However, more recently with the studies such as the one done at OSU, it is no wonder why CLA supplements such as CLA Safflower Oil became popular in the fitness and weight loss area.
How does CLA found in CLA Safflower Oil, work?
The mechanism of action of CLA is connected to the way it interacts with something called PPAR receptors. There have been clinical studies which worked on investigating the effect of acids which proved to reduce lipogenesis, by changing the molecules. The results also imply that isomers found in CLA could reduce adiposity, and do so by changing the energy metabolism. This is, to an extent, what happens to our bodies when we consume CLA Safflower Oil.
If you are asking yourself what are PPARs – they are nuclear receptor proteins which are found all over the human body, however, they mostly occur in adipose tissue. There are 3 different types:
- PPAR-Alpha, usually found in liver, heart and adipose tissue. Its function is homeostasis and triglyceride reduction.
- PPAR-Beta, usually found in adipose tissue and brain, its function is found in the metabolism process of fatty acid
- PPAR-Gamma, usually found in intestines and white adipose tissue, it has a function in insulin sensitization and glucose metabolism.
CLA becomes involved in many processes that our bodies go through by activating these PPAR receptors. There are several studies which show that CLA Safflower Oil supplementation has anti-obesity effects on both human and animal models.
There are several studies which claim that the safe dose for CLA in supplementation can vary anywhere from 15mg, to 175mg in everyday use. The goal of the supplementation can be rather diverse: from fighting food allergies to fighting cancer to reducing the effects which chronic disease can have on weight as well as atherosclerosis.
CLA can also be used to fight obesity and high blood pressure to an extent. The manufacturers often claim that CLA can be used in many other areas, there is not enough research to prove them. In general, CLA is perfectly safe for use in adults who do not have a history with diabetes or other health disorders such as bleeding or surgery.
The doses which are recommended are as follows – maximum of 7 grams daily, with no clear benefits for consuming more than 3.4 grams daily. However, following the instructions of using CLA Safflower Oil correctly is easy and should not be an issue.
Information on CLA Safflower Oil effects
When it comes to the relationship and the connection of CLA supplements such as CLA Safflower Oil and Safflower Oil, there is some evidence to show that isolated CLA is insufficiently effective on its own and that the protective effect of the oil cannot be reached that way. This is the case because vitamin E is found in significant amounts in Safflower Oil. Even so, when discussing the effects of Safflower Oil when it is used to burn fat, there is no clear-cut evidence to prove this claim to be factual.
It is possible for Safflower Oil to cause some health issues in certain situations. This is mostly the case because of the fact that when it comes to Safflower Oil, there are two kinds of it, two versions. One is made from seeds of the plant itself, whereas the other kind of Safflower Oil comes from applying the pressure on the flower. The second one is the one that is responsible for the majority of health risks, such as:
It is important to note that CLA Safflower Oil itself does not have these issues. Reviews of CLA Safflower Oil are plentiful, with WebMD acknowledging the effects of oil (the one that comes from plant seeds) being positive for users with cardiovascular issues.
However, it also doesn’t quote anything about the flower counterpart with the exception of the fact that it is possible to cause spontaneous abortions, as well as that this is how it was used in the past. This is still the case in some parts of the world. Once again, this should not be an issue as it is not used in CLA Safflower Oil.
Studies on CLA Safflower Oil, its reviews and CLA Safflower Oil manufacturers’ claims
When it comes to CLA Safflower Oil supplements similar to this one, the reviews which can be found online should be taken with a grain of salt. The majority of CLA Safflower Oil claims come from the manufacturers, directly or otherwise. However, the proper reviews and accurate information still exists and can easily be analyzed.
It is easy to think negatively about such products after the fake advertising and scandals involving the product CLA Saffron Oil by Purists Elite. The manufacturer disappeared over the night, of course, smearing the possible future of similar Safflower Oil products like CLA Safflower Oil which are genuine.
CLA Safflower Oil Pros and Cons
Even though CLA Safflower Oil, as well as Safflower Oil in general and, could be found in many people’s kitchen for quite a while now, all the benefits that came with using it were unfamiliar until recent studies. One of the main components that make up Safflower Oil, called Oleic acid, making up approximately 75% of it.
Other than that, the second largest component is polyunsaturated fatty acids with 13% and finally saturated fatty acids, which make up around 8% of CLA Safflower Oil.
Now, when looking at a 100ml amount of Safflower Oil, the nutrients are as follows: around 34mg of vitamin E, as well as around 7mcg of vitamin K. Finally, one thing that often goes unmentioned with this product is that within it, it contains certain serotonin derivates, proven to have a great antioxidative effect on consumption.
on CLA Safflower Oil
To sum up, we can confidently give our verdict on the quality and effectiveness of CLA Safflower Oil products. Mainly, because of the effects which CLA Safflower Oil has on weight loss. It is advised to ignore the various ludicrous claims that can be found online about the magical aspects of CLA Safflower Oil, as the effort on the consumers’ end is necessary in order for it to work.
This claim is supported by the conclusions of the study done at Ohio State about the ingredients found in CLA Safflower Oil as well. They found that when the Safflower Oil and CLA were given to two groups of people, the positive effects that the group had should not be made relative to its effect when used in other conditions. It should also be noted that the doses which the groups received were much higher than any of those that come in regular supplements.
The study did not have enough time to come to the conclusion on the long-term side effects of the products such as CLA Safflower Oil; however, there was no evidence to imply their occurrence after prolonged use. The manufacturers claim that CLA Safflower Oil acts as a weight loss tool because of the effect that they have on consumers’ appetite. By raising serotonin levels they suppress the appetite and block fat.
There is not enough evidence to support this claim. Generally, we would advise for any future users to first discuss using CLA Safflower Oil with their doctor if they have a history of serious illness. However, CLA Safflower Oil is safe for use in healthy adults.