Summer Weight Loss Needed or Help For A Healthy Prostate?

July 27, 2010 by  
Filed under Health

As this unprecedented summer weather continues, even I have been forced into shorts but warmer weather means that fewer layers provide less opportunity to disguise those extra pounds around the stomach and thighs.

CLA is a handy abbreviation for a not very snappy substance otherwise known as Conjugated Linolenic Acid. This is a fatty acid not produced by our bodies, but found in our food – in fact it is present in some of the very foods we should be avoiding when trying to lose weight; such as cream, and red meat, both of which are high in saturated fat.

CLA is so beneficial for effective weight loss because research has shown this fatty acid is extremely effective at helping our bodies maintain a healthy lean-to-fat ratio. What it does is to inhibit the enzyme that breaks down fat, which usually allows our body to absorb it, and then also increases the enzyme that breaks down stored fat; both of which result in a reduction in body fat.

Supplementing with CLA on a daily basis – and as part of a calorie controlled diet – helps reduce body fat, maintain a healthy lean-to-fat ratio, improve muscle tone, and maintain weight loss. Increasing evidence supports the extensive health benefits of Conjugated Linolenic Acid (CLA), including its ability to lower cholesterol levels, and maintain a healthy heart, and immune system. Specifically it can help those who are overweight, as it reduces hunger pangs, and increases feelings of fullness’ which can help to control appetite.

As an added benefit for non–dieters, research also proves that CLA also plays a role in preventing certain cancers, and for men, helps maintain a healthy prostate.

No supplement on its own will help you lose weight, but if you combine it with a good diet and exercise it can certainly support and speed up the process. to reach for that delicious, but fattening, ice cream. A good source is Lifeplan’s CLA which is derived from safflower oils, which are very similar to sunflower oils, as the 500mg capsules contain no refined sugar, salt, starch, lactose, gluten, or yeast. They also use CLA Tonalin®, the highest quality and leading brand of CLA available, which is supported by extensive research and clinical studies.

You should find it in independent health food stores, and if not then you can get it online at

Heart attack risk linked to bodys fat distribution

The link between heart attack risk and being overweight is well-established, but now it seems that it is not so much how much extra weight you are carrying, but where it is on the body that increases the risk factor. Two studies, one in the US at the Medical College of Wisconsin and another at Tel-Aviv University in Israel indicate if extra weight is all carried on the stomach and abdomen then you need to take action. In the two separate studies 20,000 subjects had their body mass index (BMI) compared to their waist measurement in relation to cardiovascular disease risk factors. The bigger the waist, the risk of high blood pressure, high cholesterol and high glucose levels were found to be significantly stronger than the link between those same factors and BMI.

The leader of the Israeli study, Dr David Tanne, pointed out that excessive abdominal fat also raises the risk of other factors associated with metabolic syndrome, such as type 2 diabetes. Their research also found that during a 23-year follow up period that those subjects with excessive abdominal fat were one and a half times more likely to suffer a stroke compared to subjects with the lowest abdominal fat.

What can you do?
Whether you can’t see your feet when looking down, or are just a little soft around the waist, it pays to take preventive action. Heart disease and stroke risk are not to be taken lightly and although regular exercise is certainly essential there is another factor that might help.

Canadian researchers reported in a study published last year in the Journal of Nutrition that having a higher intake of protein might help. Like the other researchers they were also measuring their subjects to assess waist-hip ratio (WHR). The result was that those with the highest waist-hip ratio, indicating excessive abdominal fat, were found to have the lowest intake of protein.

Why would protein have this effect?
A fatty acid called conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) might provide the answer. CLA is most abundant in protein-rich dietary sources such as meat and dairy products. It’s also available in supplement form, and studies have shown that CLA supplements may help reduce body fat mass, but as always take the simplest route first and look at your diet before taking supplements, and then only on the advice of your doctor.