MCT stands for medium chain triglyceride, and it is commonly found in foods like coconut oil. Medium chain references the number or length of carbon atoms in the molecule, and triglyceride is a scientific word for fat or fatty acids of which there are three types:
There are four common types of MCTs where the number represents the amount of carbon atoms in the chain:
· C6: Caproic acid
· C8: Caprylic acid
· C10: Capric acid
· C12: Lauric acid
Currently, there is much debate over whether or not C12 acts as a true MCT in the body. Some contest that it acts more like a long chain fatty acid and has less benefits than C6, C8, and C10.
Unlike long chain fatty acids, MCTs are quickly and efficiently broken down by the body and used as a quick source of energy as opposed to being stored as fat. Although more research is needed, many studies have shown that MCTs have positives effects on cholesterol levels, weight loss, and brain function.
Coconut oil and dairy products are both common sources of MCTs, but their composition is different. Dairy products are mainly made of C6, C8, C10 with only small amounts of C12. Coconut oil contains about 50% of C12 and smaller amounts of C6, C8, C10.
MCT oil is a concentrated form of MCTs usually in the form of C8, C10, or both that stays liquid at room temperature. Although C12 (lauric acid) has antimicrobial benefits, it is not used for energy as efficiently as the MCTs with less carbons, so it is typically not concentrated. Due to C6 (caproic acid) foul taste and smell, it is not concentrated into an oil.
MCT oil is a great way to incorporate large concentrations of medium chain triglycerides into your diet. If you are practicing a ketogenic eating pattern adding MCT oil to your daily routine can be exceptionally beneficial for entering into ketosis. You can incorporate MCT oil by adding it to salad dressings, smoothies, fat bombs, and coffee.
Chocolate “bulletproof” coffee:
Collagen protein coffee:
The coffee concoctions are endless! Experiment with combinations and find your favorite MCT oil morning pick me up.
The WellnessFX Team. (2013, December 3). MCT Oil and Dietary Fat Balance. Retrieved June 5, 2107, from blog.thewellnessfx.com
Brown, M. J., Dr. (2016, May 21). MCT Oil - A Review of Medium-Chain Triglycerides. Retrieved June 5, 2017, from Authroritynutrition.com
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