The never-ending quest for the ultimate body keeps the nutritional supplement business in full swing every year.
Tonalin is one such supplement. It contains conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) and advocates say it can burn fat quickly, while preserving and honing the strength and shape of your muscles.
But while you can find Tonalin online and at most supplement stores, research proving the benefits of CLA and Tonalin is not so readily available.
CLA is a naturally occurring polyunsaturated fatty acid found in animal meat and dairy. In recent years, it’s become a popular dietary supplement.
Fat that your body does not use for energy is transported into fat cells with the aid of the enzyme lipoprotein lipase. CLA is claimed to reduce the levels of this enzyme and send the fat to muscle cells where it is used for energy. This theoretically promotes weight loss, increases muscle strength, and improves appearance.
Tonalin claims to be the highest quality CLA supplement available, and it is made from safflower oil extract.
Studies from Italy show that CLA has potential to cause vascular damage in the long term.
A major ruling by the European Food Safety Authority has rejected the notion that CLA and body fat mass reduction are linked, instead calling attention to the limited available data and the potentially negative effects on vascular function.
Increased liver fat
A comparison review was conducted on 64 studies involving mice, rats, hamsters, or humans that focused on the effect of CLA on hepatic steatosis, and hepatic and adipose lipid metabolism.
Research showed that CLA caused the highest increase in liver fat in mice, followed by rats and hamsters. The comparison review showed no evidence that CLA had the same effect in humans.
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Although several studies suggest CLA benefits people who want to lose weight, the effects are modest at best. The evidence is inconsistent.
The European Food Safety Authority has concluded that more evidence is needed before strong claims can be made.
It’s not safe to assume that Tonalin or any CLA supplements will result in any relevant weight loss or improvement in muscle definition.