A new article has just come out in Science Daily featuring the results of a clinical trial with conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) in treating Crohn’s disease:

“In our recent open label study of CLA as a supplement in study subjects with mild to moderate CD there was a marked improvement in disease activity and quality of life in 50% of the subjects. CLA was well tolerated by all of the study subjects.” said Professor Kim L. Isaacs, a Professor of Gastroenterology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.

So what is CLA?

It is a fatty acid – a good fat – that not only helps you lose fat (adipose tissue) and gain lean muscle, but it is also an anti-inflammatory substance with immune modulation and anti-cancer properties.

The really interesting part of this study to me is how it dovetails with what we have already seen produces great results for Crohn’s disease and colitis treatment: The IBD Remission Diet! Why? Because in this book, part of the Diet involves consuming bone broths and mushroom broths between each shake. I also direct people to add a tablespoon of organic butter or coconut oil to each bowl of broth to get their good fats (crucial to healing).

Guess what the top sources of CLA are? Grass-fed meats (and bone marrow), grass-fed butter and dairy, and mushrooms! The mushrooms also release beta-glucans when made into a broth – another fantastic immune system substance. And butter and raw coconut oil also contain lauric acid – another good fatty acid with potent anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-protozoan properties. This is significant because infection is often at the root of inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

Good Bacteria Produce CLA

Another interesting piece of data from this article also supports what we have already discovered about the importance of eradicating pathogens (yeast, fungus, bad bacteria, etc.) and colonizing the gastrointestinal tract with potent, good bacteria to treat bowel and colon problems:

“Furthermore, we have demonstrated that probiotic bacteria can produce CLA locally and suppress colitis. Therefore, CLA can be administered directly in capsules or indirectly through CLA-producing probiotic bacteria,” said Dr. Raquel Hontecillas, an Assistant Professor of Immunology at NIMML.

Not only do I advocate high dose, therapeutic probiotic supplementation for colon and bowel disease in all my books, but The IBD Remission Diet also focuses on high oral dosage as well as probiotic retention enemas – where high levels of good bacteria are implanted directly into the colon via a retention enema. Click here to read chapter one of The IBD Remission Diet.

Foods Containing CLA

For those of you who don’t need anything as serious as an elemental liquid diet to induce bowel disease remission, or who just want to maintain the health you have, here are your top sources of CLA in your diet:

  • Grass-fed meat (pasture-fed, not confined to a barn and grain-fed) from ruminant (cud-chewing) animals; beef, buffalo, bison, lamb, elk. CLA is also contained in the bone marrow of these animals, so be sure to make some soup from the bones as well.
  • Grass-fed dairy (the CLA is in the fat, so consume full fat raw milk, cream, cheese, and butter). But even pasteurized organic dairy will give you decent levels of CLA since it is not destroyed by pasteurization. Cream has the highest levels of CLA out of all dairy products.
  • Cold-pressed safflower oil and mushrooms are also good sources of CLA – not as high as the animal sources, but still decent.