Diet modification through the addition of supplements is a popular way to achieve health goals. It can be very effective when used in addition to proper exercise and a good diet. If you have tried looking for supplements for eating healthily, you have probably run into how high-performance MCTs (and XCT oil, a premium-grade MCT) can improve your health and well-being.
But before adding this into your diet, here’s everything you should know about MCT oil so you can make a well-informed decision.
What is MCT Oil?
Medium-chain triglyceride or MCT oil is a supplement that contains medium-length chains of fats. Because of their shorter length, they can easily be digested, absorbed, and used to give instant energy instead of being stored in your body as fat.
MCT oil allows your body to reach the process of burning fat to provide energy (ketosis) easier and faster. It is a great source of healthy fats that can boost cognitive ability, heart and gut health, sports performance, and weight management.
5 Science-Based Benefits of MCT Oil
Helps with weight loss
If you are trying to lose weight and nothing works, MCT oil can work well for you. Studies have shown that this supplement can increase the release of hormones that make you feel full for a long period of time. And this translates to eating less throughout the day.
In addition, MCT oil enhances the growth of good bacteria in your gut and strengthens your gut lining, which is crucial when it comes to losing weight.
Improves brain function
Studies have revealed that both MCT oil and a ketogenic diet can improve brain and memory function as well as manage conditions like Alzheimer’s disease, epilepsy, and autism.
Alzheimer’s disease will weaken the ability of the brain to use sugar. By adhering to an MCT ketogenic diet, the brain will have an alternative source of energy – and that is ketones. Aside from allowing brain cells to survive, ketones will also block the brain receptor that causes memory loss.
A ketogenic diet has also been known to manage epilepsy. MCTs are converted to ketones, which play a crucial role in reducing the frequency of seizures.
For children with autism, MCT oil can help as well. Studies have shown that there were positive improvements in the overall health and well-being of kids who followed a ketogenic diet for at least six months. But since autism is a broad condition, it may affect autistic individuals in various ways. This further means that adding MCT oil to a child with autism might help to different degrees.
More research is needed to conclude that MCT oil can enhance memory and brain function. But if you look at the studies performed, the results are promising to human behavior and overall health & well-being.
Fats are broken down in the liver to be used as fuel or stored in the body as fat. Due to the fact that MCTs can enter your cells easily without being broken down, they can boost your energy immediately.
MCT oil can easily be absorbed and delivered throughout your body. In addition to being used as an immediate energy source, it can also be converted into ketones that your brain can use as energy.
Reduces risk of heart disease
Heart disease is one of the primary causes of death around the world. Factors that can increase your risk include high blood pressure, high cholesterol, smoking, being overweight, and inflammation.
MCT oil has been proven to promote weight loss, which greatly helps in reducing your risk of heart illness. Also, studies have shown that MCT oil stimulates the production of good cholesterol and reduces the amount of C-reactive protein, an inflammatory marker that boosts the possibility of heart disease.
Controls blood sugar
MCT oil can benefit people with diabetes by increasing fat burning and minimizing fat storage. Studies have shown that if diabetic patients are injected with insulin, they will need 30% less sugar to sustain their normal blood sugar levels if they add MCTs to their diet. Take note though that other factors like the amount of food ingested and timing can have a huge impact on the effects of MCT oil.
Possible Drawbacks of MCT Oil
Aside from knowing the benefits of MCT oil, you should also be aware of its potential drawbacks. These include possible fat accumulation in the liver and increased hunger. But if you keep the dosage to 1-2 tablespoons of MCT oil each day and use it to replace your normal fat intake, you will unlikely suffer from any of these negative effects.
How to Use MCT Oil
MCT oil is tasteless. So you can add it easily to your diet. But you should start using it by taking one tablespoon each day and building up to two tablespoons a day to get the most out of it.
Since MCT oil has a low smoke point and its chemical structure can change when exposed to heat, don’t use MCT oil for cooking. Instead, you just have to add it to your coffee, tea, cereals, salad dressings, and smoothies.
MCT oil is highly beneficial with few risks. The negative effects of MCT oil can be avoided if you know how to properly use it. So don’t hesitate to take advantage of all the health benefits offered by MCTs by adding MCT oil to your diet now.