I’d like to enlighten you on the benefits of MTC oil (medium chained triglycerides).
First off, what are medium-chain triglycerides?
Medium-chain triglycerides, which are fats found in foods like coconut oil. They are metabolized differently than the long-chain triglycerides (LCT) found in most other foods.
MCT oil is a supplement that contains a lot of these fats, and is claimed to have many health benefits.
Triglyceride is simply the technical term for fat. Triglycerides have two main purposes — they are transported into cells and burned for energy, or stored as body fat.
Triglycerides are named after their chemical structure, more specifically the length of their fatty acid chains. All triglycerides are made up of a glycerol molecule and 3 fatty acids.
The majority of fat in your diet is made up of long-chain fatty acids, which contain 13–21 carbons. Short-chain fatty acids have fewer than 6 carbon atoms.
In contrast, the medium-chain fatty acids in MCTs have 6–12 carbon atoms.
These are the main medium-chain fatty acids:
· C6: Caproic acid or hexanoic acid.
· C8: Caprylic acid or octanoic acid.
· C10: Capric acid or decanoic acid.
· C12: Lauric acid or dodecanoic acid.
Some experts argue that C6, C8 and C10, which are referred to as the "capra fatty acids," reflect the definition of MCT more accurately than C12 (lauric acid) (1).
The more usual dietary fats are long chain triglycerides. MCTs are Medium Chain Triglycerides and are found naturally in coconut oil, palm kernel oil, and certain dairy products. There are also various man-made MCT oil products for sale on the market.
Some potential benefits of MCT oil are:
- · Improved cognitive function, including improved memory function and prevention or treatment of dementia.
- · There are several studies examining the effectiveness of MCT oil in the treatment of Alzheimer's disease.
- · Some studies have shown MTC helps epilepsy
- · Increased energy levels.
- · Weight management, possibly due to increase in metabolism and the thermogenic effect, which may increase the body's fat burning ability.
- · Some people believe the use of MCT oil can decrease body fat and increase lean muscle mass.
- · May improve the body's absorption of calcium and magnesium.
- · Aids in regulating blood sugar
Which Should You Choose?
The source best for you depends on your goals and the amount of medium-chain triglycerides you want.
It is not clear what dose is needed to obtain potential benefits. In studies, doses range from 5–70 grams (0.17–2.5 oz) of MCT daily.
If your aim is to achieve overall good health, using coconut oil or palm kernel oil in cooking is probably sufficient.
However, for higher doses you might want to consider MCT oil.
One of the good things about MCT oil is that it has virtually no taste or smell. It can be consumed straight from the jar or alternatively mixed into food or drinks.
Dosage, Safety and Side Effects
MCT oil appears to be safe for most people.
It is not clear what dose is needed to obtain potential health benefits, but many supplement labels suggest 1–3 tablespoons daily.
There are currently no reported adverse interactions with medications or other serious side effects.
However, some minor side effects have been reported and include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea and an upset stomach.
These can be avoided by starting with small doses, such as 1 teaspoon, and increasing intake slowly. Once tolerated, MCT oil can be taken by the tablespoon.