MCTs have become one of the hottest buzzwords in nutrition today…
Dieters, athletes, bodybuilders and others seeking a simple way to give their health and well-being a boost have discovered the secret of medium-chain triglycerides.
But what exactly are they, and why are they suddenly so popular?
Medium-chain triglycerides, or MCTs, are recognized for their ability to help your body create ketones, making them an essential companion to ketogenic diets.
When your body makes ketones, you are successfully burning fat as your primary fuel instead of glucose from carbohydrates.
While nutritional ketosis provides tremendous benefits for your body and brain, the MCTs in MCT oil from organic coconut can not only augment your ketone level but offer many other benefits.
By substituting small amounts of MCT oil in place of other less healthy fats, you can tap into their valuable benefits, which include providing:
- Fuel for your body’s energy instead of being stored as fat.*
- A thermogenic effect to positively affect your metabolism and help you manage your weight.*
- Support for your gut, heart and brain health.*
Let’s take a closer look at what makes MCT oil so uniquely different from other fats…
Coconut Oil or MCT Oil – Which Is Best?
Many people mistakenly believe that coconut oil and MCT oil are the same thing, but they’re not. They’re very different.
While MCT oil can be sourced from coconuts, it’s not the same thing as coconut oil. For one, the appearance of the two is different. Coconut oil is solid at room temperature and MCT oil is liquid.
MCT oil is also far more concentrated in medium-chain fats – it consists of 100% MCTs. Coconut oil contains about 90% saturated fat, with MCTs making up about 50% of that total.
The medium-chain fats in MCT oil are more efficiently converted to ketones. Unlike other fats, MCTs do not require special enzymes, so they can be utilized more effectively by your body and put less strain on your digestive system.
And because they are easily broken down and properly absorbed, MCTs are not stored in your fat cells like other fats.
MCTs bypass your body’s bile and fat storage process and go directly to your liver, where they are converted to ketones. This makes MCT oil ideal for producing ketones.
We don’t typically rely on coconut oil for its MCT content, but there are many other good reasons to add coconut oil to your diet.
Like MCT oil, coconut oil is a tremendous source of high-quality fat and contains no carbohydrates. It makes a great addition to high fat, low carbohydrate diets.
While coconut oil may not be as effective as MCT oil for ketone formation, it…
- Supports thyroid health, as it does not interfere with T4 to T3 conversion as do processed vegetable oils.
- Helps rebuild cell membranes in your liver and increases enzyme production.
- Boosts metabolism and provides excellent and readily available fuel for your body.
- Promotes normal insulin and leptin function.
Plus, coconut oil is one of the most resistant oils for high-temperature stir-frying, unlike other vegetable oils.
You’ll find two outstanding coconut oil products in our online store: Organic Extra Virgin Coconut Oil for cooking, eating and beauty use, and Organic Coconut Oil Oral Rinse (with extra MCTs) for your oral health care.
Medium-Chain Triglycerides vs. Long-Chain Fats: Why Carbon Molecule Length Matters
Dietary fats are made up of chains of carbon molecules connected to hydrogen atoms. The length of these chains range from two to 22 carbons, and that largely determines how they act in your body.
The shortest molecules, those with fewer than six carbon atoms, are short-chain fatty acids.
At the upper end, long-chain fatty acids (LCTs) range from 12 to 18 carbons long. This group includes omega-3 fats.
Medium-chain triglycerides fall in the middle. They’re extracted from coconuts, coconut oil and palm kernel oil, and small amounts are also found in grass-fed butter and other high-fat dairy products.
MCTs have unique properties that offer many potential health benefits. But even within the medium-chain classification, there are different types with varying health benefits. The four groups of MCTs, based on their carbon length include:
- C6 Caproic acid– Converts to ketones quickly but may cause digestive issues. Smell and taste can also be unpleasant, even after processing.
- C8 Caprylic acid– Converts to ketones within minutes and is odorless, flavorless and may be easier on your digestive tract.
- C10 Capric acid– Converts to ketones less efficiently than C8 but has other valuable properties.
- C12 Lauric acid– Abundant in coconut oil but doesn’t function as a true MCT. Rather, C12 behaves more like a long-chain fatty acid and can be more difficult for your liver to absorb and break down into ketones.
As a rule, the shorter the chain, the more readily the MCTs convert into ketones, or energy molecules created by your liver from fats.
Let’s take a closer look at the three MCTs that offer the most potential for your health…
Clean-Burning C8 Caprylic Acid Bypasses Your Normal Digestive Processes to Provide Quick Energy
Of all the medium-chain triglycerides, C8 may be the easiest on your digestion.
Its most notable feature is its ability to bypass your normal digestive processes, including your pancreatic enzymes and bile, to create quick, clean energy to fuel your body and brain.
Compared to other types of fats and other MCTs, C8…
- Crosses your intestinal membrane directly to your liver to be used as clean-burning fuel for your entire body.
- Passes through your blood-brain barrier to supply your brain tissue with fast fuel and mental energy.
- Has no flavor of its own but enhances the flavor of other foods and beverages when combined – a quick and easy way to add extra fat calories into your diet.
- Rapidly converts to energy so it helps squelch hunger pangs and boosts satiety and satisfaction when following a ketogenic diet.
The ketones created by C8 MCTs help suppress ghrelin, or your “hunger hormone”, and enhance another hormone that tells your brain you’re full.
Dieters love caprylic acid for its fast energy and its ability to reduce cravings and hunger pangs. Sometimes a little help can make all the difference between success and failure in managing your weight.
Why Your Brain Prefers Ketones for Its Fuel
Compared to glucose, ketones are a much more ideal fuel for your cells’ mitochondria because they burn cleanly and produce far less reactive oxygen species (ROS) that can damage your cells and promote aging.
While your brain can run on either glucose or ketones as its energy supply, researchers have discovered that the brain prefers ketones, especially if the individual is at risk for cognitive issues.
They’ve found that by introducing ketones into your brain, you may be able to help rescue brain cells that have lost their ability to utilize glucose efficiently.*
Here’s what makes C8 MCTs especially useful for your brain… Because they are water-soluble, they pass through your blood-brain barrier and supply your brain with energy. Other fats simply can’t do that.
When you enter nutritional ketosis, mental clarity and improved cognitive function are typically some of the first changes people notice. That is precisely what I experience when in ketosis.
If you’d like to learn more about my advanced cyclical nutritional ketosis plan to help optimize your benefits from MCT oil, order my books: Fat for Fuel and Ketofast.
When my goal is to create ketones, I choose Biothin® Ketone Energy MCT Oil.
However, there are many ways you can benefit from the addition of C10 Capric acid and C12 Lauric acid from organic coconut…
The Unique Health Benefits of C10 Capric Acid
Capric acid, or C10, is largely responsible for coconut oil’s many health benefits.
Together with C8 caprylic acid and C12 lauric acid, capric acid supports a healthy balance of high-density lipoproteins, or HDL cholesterol, relative to low-density lipoproteins, or LDL cholesterol.*
Capric acid is also known for its ability to help protect against threats to your health and for supporting your immune health.*
Much like C8, C10 medium-chain triglycerides are broken down quickly and processed in your liver. They also serve as a source of energy.
Capric acid and other MCTs may be useful for weight management. Clinical studies show that MCT consumption can lead to greater energy expenditure.*
One study of 49 men and women, ages 19 to 50, consumed either MCT oil or olive oil as part of a 16-week weight loss program. Thirty-one subjects completed the study.
The study participants consuming MCT oil (as opposed to olive oil) reported the following benefits:
- Lower endpoint body weight
- Greater loss of fat mass and trunk fat mass
- Lower intra-abdominal adipose tissue
This study confirms that making small changes in the quality and type of the fat you ingest can make a significant difference in managing your weight.*
C12 Lauric Acid and Monolaurin – A Newborn’s Secret to Survival in a Harsh, New Environment
When newborns enter the world, they face a harsh, new environment that challenges their developing immune system.
A substance called monolaurin from C12 lauric acid may be a newborn’s secret to survival as lab and animal tests suggest it may offer valuable support for immune health.*
Often considered a “miracle” fat because of its unique health-promoting properties, lauric acid is known for its ability to support your immune health.*
While the fat in coconut oil is made up of more than 40% lauric acid, or C12, MCT oil contains a lower level.
As we’ve already seen, C12 doesn’t always have the same biological activity as shorter chained fats. Lauric acid behaves more like a long-chain fatty acid in that it doesn’t turn into ketones as easily as do MCTs.
When you consume either coconut or MCT oil, your body converts the lauric acid into monolaurin.
Our Unique Biothin® MCT Oil Blend of C8, C10 and C12
For those who desire a broad-based organic MCT oil supplement, we’ve introduced a product that contains a blend of what I consider the most desirable MCTs.
Especially rich in C8 and C10, our unique Biothin® Organic MCT Oil contains a total of 13 g of MCTs, consisting of:
- 7 grams of Caprylic Acid (C8)
- 5 grams of Capric Acid (C10)
- 1 gram of Lauric Acid (C12)
We wanted a source that would guarantee you a plentiful supply of C8 MCTs as well as C10 MCTs for their equally valuable properties.
And we wanted our MCT Oil to be sourced only from organic coconut so you wouldn’t need to second guess its source.
With our Biothin® MCT Oil, I believe you’re getting the best of what MCTs offer to help you achieve your most challenging health goals. Here are some of the potential benefits from this unique product:
- Support for a healthy metabolism and ideal weight*
- Support for your cellular and mitochondrial health*
- Support for your immune health*
- Support for your brain health and cognitive function*
- Support for your energy levels and athletic performance by supplying a source of fast, clean-burning fuel*
- Support for your cyclical ketogenic eating plan*
In short, Biothin® MCT Oil provides support for your cyclical ketogenic eating plan, as well as everyday support for health.*
Take Control of Your Metabolic Health with Biothin® MCT Oil from Organic Coconut
It’s simple to incorporate Biothin® MCT Oil into your daily routine, but I caution you to take it slowly if you’re new to MCTs to avoid any unwanted gastrointestinal effects.
I suggest starting with one teaspoon of Biothin® MCT Oil and gradually work up to one or more tablespoons a day. At first, have it with another fat, such as with a handful of nuts, with ghee or butter in your coffee, or as one of the oils in your salad dressing.
Once you’re fully adjusted, you can feel confident adding it to any food or beverage. Add one or more spoonfuls to your favorite smoothie recipe, salads, soups and entrees.
If you’re one of the many who have difficulty digesting fats, rest assured. MCT oil is often more easily digested by those who struggle to digest other types of fat.
So, especially if that’s you, I know you’ll be pleased to have this alternate source of clean-burning fuel.
Take control of your metabolic health with Biothin® MCT Oil, and start reaping the many benefits that only MCTs can offer.