MCT Oils (Medium Chain Triglycerides)


Apr 29

In our discussion on Coconut Oil, we touched on Medium Chain Triglycerides. These are the oils that make Coconut Oil the “low-fat fat.”

If you’re a regular of WebMD, you’ll be shocked to find that coconut oil is bad for you. The American Heart Association wants us to limit our saturated fats. Why? Because doctors and dieticians don’t know squat about nutrition. They think saturated fats are bad for us. This is ridiculous.

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They do say, at WebMD, that the saturated fats in coconut oil aren’t as bad as most saturated fats because they are made up of medium chain triglycerides.

However, for centuries, lard was very good for human beings. Only recently has lard become toxic. Toxins are stored in our fat. The environment is toxic. Thus lard has become toxic.

Modern medicine seems to think that fats are fats, that all fats are the same. Nothing could be further from the truth. As consumers, we must be careful of the types of fats we use, and the toxicity of those fats.

Medium Chain Triglycerides, as we said above, come from coconut oil, and sometimes palm oil.

These fats are metabolized very differently from most fats, and they seem to have some very healing qualities, but there is a caveat.

When we eat, our blood sugar increases stimulating insulin production. Insulin is a “fat storing” hormone. The carbs we eat are metabolized in our liver and burned off for instant energy, while the fats we’ve eaten get stored away as energy stores we can use later. Fats create much more energy than carbs and starches (and sugars).

MCT fats are different from other fats. They too are metabolized in your liver and burned quickly like your carbs. The fact is, MCT oils do not store well in our fat cells. They burn quickly and they “help” us burn our other fats (like priming a pump). If you take them a half hour prior to eating, they curb your appetite. So, one strategy in dieting is to make up a salad early and uses MCT oils in your salad dressing. And of course I’m going to go over all our recipes and add a little note on MCT oil.

An Important Note for Those of You Who Google

The Internet is full of misinformation and confusing information about MCT oils. There are a few sites I visit regularly to supplement my research, and it was on this subject that I found the most confusion.

Most of the info on MCTs come from research on Coconut Oil. But MCT Oil is NOT Coconut Oil; MCT Oil has been extracted from Coconut Oil and/or Palm Oil.

One doctor’s site I trust more than Mercola’s was really way off base praising MCTs for their anti-viral, anti-biotic properties. Lauric Acid (a fatty acid) is an MCT oil that has all these properties, but (and here is the caveat) if you buy “MCT Oil,” you will not get more than 1% Lauric Acid; you’ll get Caprylic and Capric fatty acids.

The smoking point of Coconut Oil is 350 degrees. Some of you know I’m a “low temp” chef. Nothing in my kitchen is ever cooked over 350 degrees. The smoking point of MCT oil is lower, so you don’t want to heat MCT oils higher than 325 degrees, or thereabouts.

In MCT oils available commercially, the two oils most often used are Caprylic and Capric in a 60/40 ratio. These oils are mostly known for the following properties:

Again, if you search the web, you’ll find more properties of MCT oils, but most of the time those are actually properties of Coconut Oil.

MCTs are stable and have a two year shelf life.

Back To Our Subject

We know that coconut oil is anti-viral and anti-bacterial, and that is mostly due to the lauric acid content. The MCT oils are also anti-pathogenic, but only slightly and not as much as the lauric acid.

MCT is easily digested. There are limited studies showing that MCT oils balance out the bacteria in our colons, keeping the e-coli down and good bacteria up.

This is also important to dieters and people with metabolic syndrome (or borderline metabolic syndrome), because maintaining a healthy balance of “gut microbiota” helps maintain weight and keeps inflammation down.

Additionally, MCT Oil increases and maintains insulin (and leptin) sensitivity.

To summarize: MCT oils are anti-inflammatory, assist in regulating hormones, keep blood sugar from spiking, and support a healthy immune system.

And because they give an energy boost, many people put a teaspoon in their morning coffee.

I store my MCT Oils in the 16oz squirt bottle and my coffee mug is that thing that looks like a camera lens

Now let’s get something straight.

MCT oil is NOT better than Coconut Oil. Coconut oil does everything MCT oil does and better, again because of the lauric acid content, with the one exception that the more you use eventually you’ll put fat on your hips, thighs, and belly. MCT oils will always burn off as soon as they can, giving you extra energy.

Additionally, Coconut Oil is natural (if cold pressed and virgin), whereas MCT oil is man-made/processed from coconut oil and palm oil. Palm oil has been collected in ways that are NOT good for the environment. It is not sustainable to deforest an area to collect palm oil and that’s exactly what they do. I’ve been horrified at the videos of orangutans attacking the machinery wiping out their homes and habitats. It’s cruel and, since we’re just humans, the most intelligent creature on earth that is bent on its own self-destruction, it probably won’t stop for some time. This is why we recommend Fractionated Coconut Oil instead of MCT Oils. We know where Fractionated Coconut Oil comes from: coconuts. MCT Oils come from coconuts and palm oil and we cannot be sure the palm oils are collected sustainably.

We were going to link you (through one of our affiliate programs) to NOW Foods MCT Oils, but I contacted NOW Foods and learned that they are made from Palm Oil (and Coconut Oil), and most Palm Oil is not collected sustainably, damaging the habitat of many animals.

So, I helped Simply the Best get a form that was made from cold pressed Coconut Oil only.

Weight Conscious?

If you are dieting or weight conscious or suffering from metabolic syndrome, MCT Oil in your regimen is better for you “overall” than Coconut Oil. Again, too much Coconut Oil will put weight on you and it’s very hard to make salad dressings or mayo from Coconut Oil because it is a solid at room temp or in the fridge.

In other words, MCT Oils are superior to Coconut Oil only in that they’re easier to administer (like in coffee), easier to make salad dressing and mayo with, and they give you quick energy without hanging around on your hips, plus those other properties listed above.

And since we’re assuming their smoke temperature is lower than Coconut Oil, again, you might not want to cook with them.

Now get this. MCT Oil is naturally made by your skin. These natural oils are antibacterial. As we age, of course, their production slows and most people wash their faces an awful lot, washing away these oils.

This is why Coconut Oil is so good for our skin. It puts back the anti-microbial oils we keep washing away.

MCT Oil is also good for our skin, but again, the anti-microbial effect will not be as great as it would be with Coconut Oil, but this stuff is also great for your hair, and they go on easier than Coconut Oil.

MCT Oil has a long shelf life, and oils with a long shelf life are very good for the skin. It’s mild, and so far, I’ve not come across anyone with any type of skin that is too sensitive to it. They appear in a lot of skin products, and if you use it by itself, you’ll find that just a little bit goes a long way.

And I helped them get this stuff in, so Simply the Best has the best price for the best oil on the web: MCT Oil @ Simply the Best.