Introduction

Conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) refers to a group of stereo and positional isomers of octadecadienoate (18:2) (Figure 5.1).1 This group of polyunsaturated fatty acids is formed by partial biohydrogenation in the rumen of cattle and lamb, and is therefore found in the meat and milk products from these ruminant sources (Table 5.1).2-4 Levels of CLA and individual isomers in meat and milk result from differences in diet and farming management of cows.5 CLA can also be prepared synthetically by heating linoleic acid in the presence of alkali or by partial dehydroge-nation of linoleic acid; however, synthetic preparation of CLA from precursors such as linoleic acid results in an alteration of the isomeric composition (Table 5.2).6 In foods, c9t11 CLA, also called rumenic acid,7 is the most predominant isomer,48 followed by t7c9 CLA, c11t13 CLA, c8t10 CLA, and t10c12 CLA.8 In synthetic preparations of CLA, c9t11 CLA and t10c12 CLA are the dominant isomeric forms, followed by t7c9 CLA, c8t10 CLA, and c11t13 CLA. Importantly, most research on CLA in health has utilized the synthetic form of CLA oil containing the altered ratio of c9t11 CLA:t10c12 CLA of 0.95.

Your Heart and Nutrition

Your Heart and Nutrition

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