Does Conjugated Linoleic Acid Work?

Conjugated linoleic acid is a natural substance found in many of our foods that according to many studies can reduce fat and improve muscle mass in the body. Taken as a supplement with no change in eating or exercise habits, it would not make you lose weight but it could help you lose fat. It is often taken by men looking to lose weight and bodybuild at the same time, but it can also be useful for anyone who is overweight and under-exercising, as any increase in muscle will increase the metabolism, burning more calories.

Conjugated Linoleic Acid

Like many natural weight loss products, conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) combined with a flexible healthy eating plan can lead to gradual long term weight loss and help you get out of the yoyo dieting cycle where you are constantly losing and gaining the same 10, 20 or 50 pounds. Yoyo dieting is very bad for the health. It is better to remain overweight than to keep on losing and gaining, losing and gaining.

CLA SupplementsMost experts (unless they are trying to sell you something) agree that the diet that works best in the long term is the non-diet, where instead of eating special foods and banning others, you eat slightly smaller quantities of a normal healthy diet. If you are currently living entirely on pizza, fries and chocolate, then okay, some changes may be overdue. But you can still have small portions of all of those foods from time to time. If this is the kind of diet that you want, then CLA can help reinforce your plan by boosting your fat loss. Dr Michael Pariza of University of Wisconsin-Madison, reported to the American Chemical Society that CLA “doesn’t make a big fat cell get little. What it rather does is keep a little fat cell from getting big.”

Many studies have been done on CLA. One study published in the Journal of Nutrition found that people taking CLA lost on average six pounds of body fat more than a group that took a placebo. The researchers discovered that you need around 3.4 grams of CLA per day for it to be effective. CLA is found in food, especially meat and dairy products, but supplementation is necessary for most people to reach that level.

Conjugated Linoleic Acid Studies

Another study at Purdue University, Indiana, found that CLA improved insulin levels in about two-thirds of diabetics, and slightly decreased their blood glucose level and triglyceride levels, suggesting that it may help to maintain normal insulin levels. But see your doctor before taking any supplements if you have diabetes.

There are no magic pills for weight loss but if you are willing to commit to reducing your body fat permanently, CLA may help you. Keep in mind that its main effect is to convert fat to muscle, which by itself will not weigh any less. But your body will look slimmer and feel healthier if you do this, and combined with a good weight control eating plan conjugated linoleic acid can help you move toward your ideal weight too.

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The Limitations Of BMI

BMI is one of the most common tools for determining whether you’re too heavy in proportion to your height. Otherwise known as Body Mass Index, this is a calculation that helps to compare you to average weights and heights, to determine whether you’re in the normal range. It can vaguely tell you whether you have too much fat on your body.

The index can be very useful when deciding on what your ideal weight should be when you are trying to lose weight. However, as helpful as the BMI is, it also has its limitations. These are extremely important to know, as following BMI could actually sometimes take you in the wrong direction.

What’s Wrong With BMI?

There is no one scale that can truly determine what is the right weight for every single human on the planet. This is because everyone is different; people have different heights, weights, builds, activity levels, and so on.

When measuring one’s BMI index, the only two things that are taken into consideration are the height and weight of the person. Therefore, for those who have a big build or have a large amount of muscle mass, and those who those who are elderly and therefore have less muscle mass, the BMI scale is less dependable upon and can be very incorrect.

A person who has a larger amount of muscle mass is heavier, but this does not mean that the person has a larger amount of fat. Using BMI alone, you cannot determine if this person is actually normal or overweight.

Using Your BMI Measurement the Right Way

Therefore, when referring to the Body Mass Index to determine your ideal weight, do practice some common sense to decide what the right weight you should be aiming for is. If you have a larger build or are more muscular than most people, adding 10% to the ideal weight stated for your height is a more realistic aim. If you are of a smaller build, subtracting 10% off the stated weight can be your aim.

Measuring your body fat percentage is also a much clearer indication of whether you’ve got weight to lose. Even if you have a high BMI, having a healthy body fat percentage is what’s important to your health.

Besides doing this, keep an eye on how you feel when you get to a certain weight; if you have reached a certain weight but feel tired, fatigued, and generally feel you look too thin, then perhaps you have lost too much of weight and need to gain a little bit to be at the right weight.

Hopefully, you now know what the limitations of the BMI are and understand how you can get around these limitations. In the end, compared to weight, it’s your health that matters more; don’t set unrealistic targets for weight loss that will instead cause damage to your health and well-being.

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How Fast Should You See Results When Trying To Lose Weight?

Losing weight is no walk in the park. You probably already know that it is a difficult process, one that requires willpower, patience, and determination. We all know that we need to weight, but we all want to see results yesterday! The main question people have when they first set out on a weight loss journey is ‘How long is this going to take?â? The answer to that is complicated, to say the least.

How Your Metabolism Plays a Part in Results

Your metabolism is the key determinant in how fast you see results when you try to lose weight. Some people have faster metabolisms than others; men generally have faster metabolisms than women. Similarly, younger people tend to have faster metabolisms than older people, and more muscular people have faster metabolisms than their less muscular counterparts.

Therefore, your individual metabolism is what decides how fast the weight slips off. This is also the reason why you should not compare how fast you lose weight to other people. They may have a faster or slower metabolism than yours, so what works for them may not work for you (yes, that super skinny friend of yours who swallows down meals in large quantities but never gains weight probably has a much faster metabolism than yours).

Is There Nothing You Can Do?

running-beachWell, don’t lose all hope if the pounds seem to be slipping off you at the rate of a snail trying to run 100 yards. There are several things you can do to keep your metabolism running much more efficiently (read: faster).

Firstly, it’s important to avoid diets that restrict your calories too much, as this will slow down your metabolism in the long run. Also, exercise regularly and incorporate strength training into your workouts so that you can increase muscle mass, which will rev up your metabolism as well. Keep your body guessing by constantly mixing up your workouts and mealtimes, so that your metabolic fire will be running at full speed all the time.

So, don’t worry about how fast you can see results. Just focus on your weight loss efforts and see to it that you are dieting and exercising effectively. If you do everything right, you should see some progress over time.

Note that it’s healthy to lose around one or two pounds a week on a proper weight loss program, though you may lose much more initially if you have a lot of weight to lose. Also, if you only have a little bit of weight to lose, it will be much harder to see results, but don’t give up. Keep at it and you’ll see the results you want sooner or later.

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