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Dietary oil may need help in avoiding any side effects of weight loss
Date:4/9/2008

COLUMBUS, Ohio An oil made of natural fatty acids that is sometimes used as a weight-loss supplement may need to be paired with hormones or other substances to prevent health problems that can follow rapid weight loss, a new study suggests.

Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA), a compound naturally found in some meat and dairy products, can reduce body fat in some studies in humans. But a recent study in mice found that the hormone leptin adds an element of protection against side effects that can accompany fat loss with CLA.

Without leptin, fat loss occurs in mice eating a diet containing CLA, but the mice also become insulin resistant. When mice are fed CLA and given leptin, the same fat loss occurs but insulin resistance does not develop.

So though leptin is not essential to the fat loss, it has important protective effects to maintain insulin sensitivity, said Martha Belury, lead author of the study and associate professor of human nutrition at Ohio State University.

Fat loss is not dependent on leptin but if we didnt have leptin, CLA could have some short-term effects on insulin resistance, Belury said.

The study appears in a recent issue of the Journal of Lipid Research.

CLA is an essential fatty acid found naturally in trace amounts primarily in beef, lamb and milk. Synthetic forms of CLA are marketed as supplements that help reduce body fat.

But continuing research shows that there are consequences associated with the loss of fat. Because fat in the body is energy, it has to go somewhere if it is not burned away by metabolism. When CLA is driving fat out of fat tissue, the fat tends to end up in the liver or in muscles. If that fat cant be used, insulin resistance results. So Belury and colleagues are trying to find out precisely how CLA works to reduce body fat and how to prevent any associated side effects.

You can reduce body fat, which is a good thing for a person trying to avoid di
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Contact: Martha Belury
Belury.1@osu.edu
614-292-1680
Ohio State University
Source:Eurekalert

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