MCT oil is gaining increasing attention in the health food circuit. When you read about its benefits, you will soon understand why it’s happening.
What Is MTC Oil?
MCT is short for medium-chain triglycerides, which are a specific type of fat found in some oils. MCT oil is a supplement made up of these targeted fats. It boasts a range of health benefits when taken as part of a healthy diet.
MTC Oil Benefits
1. MCT oil contains good fats
There are many different types of fats and all of them consist of chains of carbon atoms. Standard fats contain somewhere between 13 and 21 carbon atoms. Thus, they are long-chain fatty acids.
In contrast, short-chain fatty acids contain fewer than 6 carbon atoms. Medium-chain triglycerides are in between both of these types. They consist of 6 to 12 carbon atoms.
MCTs are processed by the body differently from these other types of fats. They go straight to the liver and immediately become a source of energy or turn into ketones.
Ketones are byproducts of fatty acids that form when the liver breaks down large amounts of fat. Our brains use them as an alternative source of energy as opposed to glucose.
The body uses the calories in MCT immediately. As a result, it is less likely to store them as fat, which is the basis of the ketogenic diet.
2. MTC oil improves memory function
Studies have linked MCTs to benefits for Alzheimer’s disease. The brains of those affected by Alzheimer’s can struggle to process glucose. Yet, they metabolize ketones in a similar way to healthy people.
Increasing levels of ketones could provide more usable energy for the brain. Thus, they can improve memory function.
There is increasing research on the benefits of MCTs on memory and brain function. Scientists believe that changing the energy source used by the brain could improve memory and concentration.
MCTs enter the brain without being broken down. So, the brain can use them as an instant source of energy. This makes them great to use before tasks that require a lot of concentration such as exams.
Some even refer to MTCs as a ‘super fuel’ due to the speed at which the body absorbs them. They bypass the bile duct and enter the liver quickly. Then, the body can distribute them as energy.
MTCs are particularly useful for those following a ketogenic diet. That is because of their ability to be easily transformed into ketones.
3. MTCs improve sporting performance
Studies have found that MCTs reduce levels of lactate in athletes. That, in turn, improves performance and endurance.
One study found that by taking 6 grams of MCTs before cycling athletes had lower levels of lactate. They also found exercising easier.
Studies have also found that MTCs increase the amount of fat burned during a workout. It’s most likely because the body can burn ketones easier than other forms of energy including glucose.
Adding MCTs to the diet reduces the need to eat large amounts of carbohydrates to fuel intensive exercise, too.
Also, MCTs can improve the athletes’ ability to endure high-intensity exercise. It makes exercising feel easier and improves performance.
These MCT oil benefits may also help those who are exercising to lose weight. They allow them to exercise longer and burn more calories as a result.
4. MTC oil can help with weight loss
There are several reasons why MCTs can be helpful to those who are trying to lose weight.
First of all, studies have proven that MCT oil can increase the levels of hormones that help the body to feel full longer. They are peptide YY and leptin. MCTs help people to recognize when they are full and feel satiation longer after eating.
In addition, MTC oil is more effective at keeping you full than coconut oil. In one study, people took two tablespoons of MCT oil with their breakfast. They ended up eating less for lunch than those who had taken two tablespoons of coconut oil instead.
MCT oil can also reduce body weight and waist measurements. It was so effective that researchers have said that the oil could prevent obesity.
5. MTC oil can improve heart health
Due to the weight loss benefits offered by MCT oil, those who take it can find that their heart health improves as well. Weight loss drives down cholesterol levels. It also reduces the amount of fat built up around vital organs such as the heart.
In a study of 24 men who were taking MCT oil for a month, the total amount of cholesterol dropped by 12.5%. In comparison, those who took olive oil instead only saw their cholesterol decrease by 4.7%.
The same study found that bad cholesterol (LDL) levels dropped when participants took MCT. LDL is dangerous because can increase the risk of heart attacks and other vascular diseases. MCT oil can also raise the amount of good cholesterol (HDL), which protects the heart.
Another study found that MCT oil can significantly reduce the amount of C-reactive protein in the blood. It is an inflammatory marker that has can increase the risk of heart disease.
6. MTC oil can be useful in the treatment of epilepsy and autism
MCT oils may also block receptors in the brain that cause seizures in rats. Yet, we need more in-human studies to find out more about this.
Because of its spectrum-nature autism affects people in different ways. Measuring the outcomes of such studies can be difficult. Nonetheless, scientists believe that adding MCT oil to a child’s diet can improve their autism to varying degrees.
It is important to discuss a change of diet with your child’s doctor or nutritionist beforehand. It’ll ensure what is the best option for their specific needs.
There is a wide variety of MTC oil benefits, especially when added to a ketogenic diet. It can improve one’s overall health by helping to lose weight and improve brain function.
It can also help with the symptoms of conditions like Alzheimer’s, epilepsy, and autism. Because of that, we will likely see MTC oil in their mainstream treatment more often in the future.