PART 7: How high would these
doses need to be?
Let's do some calculations.
A man eats about 2.8kg of food daily; a woman eats about 1.7kg.
If the diet was normal, it would provide about 55% of calories
from carbohydrates, 30% from fat, and 15% from protein (the exact
numbers are not critical for this calculation). The food eaten
might provide around 2,800 calories for a man, and 1,700 for a
woman (I use these numbers just to keep the math easy; the actual
number of calories would be lower for a sedentary person, and higher
for an athlete, logger, or body builder). To make human food intake
comparable to the dry food compositions fed to rats, mice, and
other animals in captivity, we have to convert the amount of food
eaten by humans into a 'dry' (still containing 5-10% water) animal
food weight equivalent. If 2.8kg (2,800 grams) provides 2,800 calories
- about 55% of calories come from carbohydrates at
4 calories per gram, which make up 2,800x0.55/4=385 grams of
- 30% of calories come from fats at 9 calories
per gram, which make up 2,800x0.3/9=93 grams of the food; fat
makes up 30% of calories, but only 13% of food weight;
- 15% of calories come from protein at
4 calories per gram, which make up 2,800x0.15/4=105 grams of
- 5% of dry weight (600 grams) comes from minerals,
which =30 grams of the food;
- about 5% of the 'dry' animal (and equivalent
human) food is water, which =30 grams of the food; and
- 10% of dry weight comes from fiber, which
=60 grams of the food.
The human equivalent of the 'dry' animal food
sums up to 703 grams. Of the 2,800 grams of food eaten by a
day, about 75% (2,100 grams) is water. Based on these figures:
The high doses of CLA are unaffordable for many, making
it impossible in practice to provide effective doses to those who
have the problems that CLA might address. Inability to afford the
expense may be a beneficial deterrent, given the negative effects
associated with higher doses of CLA in animals. At these high CLA
doses, negative effects such as those seen in some animal studies
would likely occur in humans as well. Remarkably, daily intakes in
the 5% of food or even higher (up to 10 tablespoons per day) are
appropriate for the more important and at the same time more affordable
omega-3 and omega-6 EFA mixtures.
- CLA at 0.5% of food intake would be 3.5 grams/day
for a man, and 2.1 grams for a woman.
- CLA at 1% would be 7 grams/day for men and 4.2
grams for women.
- CLA at 2% would be 14 and 8.4 grams for men
and women, respectively.
- 3% CLA would be 21 and 12.6 grams for men and
- 5% CLA, the highest dose used in studies on
animals, would be 35 and 21 grams for men and women, respectively.
This would be 2.5 tablespoons for men, and 1.5 tablespoons
at high doses competes with EFAs and crowds them and their
derivatives out of enzyme spaces.
This is cause for great concern.
The body has no requirement for CLA. But it has an absolute
requirement for EFAs, which should not be interfered with.