Need an MCT Explanation? Join the Club!
MCT stands for medium-chain triglycerides, a type of saturated fat that can be found in coconut oil or purchased on its own. Coconut oil is about 60-70% MCTs. This type of fat behaves differently than other forms of saturated fat because it’s easy to digest. When consumed, MCTs travel directly to the liver to be metabolized. This produces energy and body heat, whereas other fats must undergo a longer, slower digestive process before they’re used as fuel or stored for later. This is one of the reasons MCT oil is touted as a metabolism and energy booster!
“Medium-chain” references the number, or length, of carbon atoms in the molecule. “Triglyceride” is a scientific word for fat, or fatty acids, of which there are three types:
- Short-chain fatty acids with less than 6 carbon atoms (milk and butter)
- Medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) with 6-12 carbon atoms (coconut oil and palm kernel oil)
- Long-chain fatty acids (most common) with 13-21 carbons (nuts, salmon, seeds)
Coconut Oil VS MCT:
Coconut oil contains MCT’s, but in relatively small quantities. C8 MCT (Caprylic Acid) comprises roughly 6% of coconut oil, and C10 (Capric Acid) is upwards of 9%. This is significant because it takes far fewer steps to convert to caloric energy than the other saturated fat forms found in coconut oil. We love coconut oil, but if you really want to benefit from the fast-acting fuel of MCT’s, opt for that instead of coconut oil.
Benefits of MCT Oil:
Although more research is needed, many studies have shown that MCTs have positive effects on cholesterol levels, weight loss and brain function. In addition, MCT oil has been shown to have antibacterial, antifungal and antimicrobial properties which help maintain a healthy gut. This impacts things like your immune system, food cravings and even your mood!
Many people love it in a “fat coffee” in the morning because it converts into caloric energy faster than carbohydrates, making it one of the best ways to power up your performance or kick start a nutrition program.
- Satiation (feeling of fullness)
- Raise your metabolic function
- Provides energy (especially when in ketosis)
- Focus and clearer thinking
- Improved digestion
- Balance hormone levels
- Fight bacterial infection and viruses
- Absorb fat-soluble nutrients from various foods
This special oil is a concentrated form of MCTs, usually in a form that stays liquid at room temperature. It’s a great way to incorporate large concentrations of medium-chain triglycerides into your diet. If you practice a low-carb high-fat eating pattern, or are trying to get into a state of ketosis, adding MCT oil to your daily routine can expedite the process.
MCT Usage Tips:
When you first start using MCT oil, use caution. MCT “goes right through you,” at first, and you might notice some changes in your bowel movements. Start slowly, adding it into your routine 1 teaspoon at a time over the course of several weeks, working up to a tablespoon, or as high as two tablespoons. There’s no MCT benefit to staying in the bathroom all day!
Use teaspoons of MCT oil in coffee, smoothies, salad dressings, mashed with avocado for guacamole, sautes and drizzling on veggies. It’s got a high smoke point too, so feel free to use it in cooking.
Where we Love It:
MCT Guacamole (available in the program)
We have tons more recipes that use MCT oil to benefit your body! Check them out in the 131 Method Book!