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Grassfarming and Your Health News

New findings on CLA clarify the benefits of meat and dairy products

Conjugated linoleic acid or CLA has demonstrated a multitude of benefits in animal studies, including fat reduction, increase in lean muscle mass, reduced risk of diabetes, reversal of arteriosclerosis, and a marked reduction in tumor growth.

Many people do not realize, however, that there are 16 different types of CLA, each with a slightly different molecular shape. New research reveals that each type of CLA has a different set of benefits. The type of CLA most abundant in meat and dairy products (referred to by chemists as "cis-9, trans-11, CLA") appears to be the champion cancer fighter. Compared with another common type of CLA (trans 10, cis 12, CLA) it was a third more effective in blocking the growth of human cancer cells. (78% versus 58% reduction)

But the type of CLA found in meat and dairy products does not appear to reduce fat or increase lean muscle mass in humans. (That property is linked with trans 10, cis 12, CLA)

It will be some time before researchers match each type of CLA with its particular benefits.

Information gleaned from abstracts presented at the 91st American Oil Chemists Society April 25-28, 2000 annual meeting. Special supplement to Inform, vol 11, no 5, 2000.

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Pasture Perfect
by Jo Robinson
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butterkeeper

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