Health Benefits of MCT’s

The words Medium-chain triglyceride (MCT) may not have you thinking of vibrant health, mental fortitude, optimal energy levels, or a healthy weight.  But it’s time to help you understand that MCT’s are here to help and provide you with some excellent health benefits.  Weather looking for a brain boost, a new tool to help with your weight loss and or metabolic health, MCT is for everybody!

So let’s get you up to speed….

MCT’s have made a big splash in the world of nutrition lately, but they have been around for many years in the world of Bodybuilding.  These simple fats have helped the fitness community for many years, but are just now making their way into the general population for the many health benefits that they posses. So let’s talk about some of the health benefits. They are easily absorbed, and have been used clinically since the 1950’s.  Including MCT’s in the diet may support the following health goals.

Enhanced ketone production –  Ketones are an alternative energy source produced by the liver from fatty acids.  Ketones are normally produced in small amounts when there is a lack of glucose to supply energy, such as during extended exercise or an over night fast.  In addition to being used for energy, ketones have signaling functions that may positively regulate genes related to aging, oxidative stress and healthy sympathetic nervous system activity. MCTs are converted to ketones in the liver, even in the presence of some glucose, which means they provide ketones and the benefits that come from them, to fuel your brain and body without the need for carbohydrates. This can be great for those that do a fasted workout early in the morning, thus giving you energy to power through your workout.

Focus and Energy – Energy production from glucose is a multistep process that also creates oxidative damage that can wreak havoc on cells.  On the other hand, the ketones from MCT oil are quickly and efficiently metabolized and reduce oxidative damage. Ketones also readily cross the blood brain barrier and supply efficient and clean fuel for brain cells, which many claim enhances their focus and mental function.

Cognitive Function –  Decreased utilization of glucose is and early symptom in the brains of Alzheimer’s patients.  Ketones in the brain also have a neuroprotective effect and have been shown to increase glutathione activity (one the the bodies most powerful antioxidants), reduce cell death, enhance mitochondrial function, and have both anti-inflammatory and antioxidant actions.  Several studies have shown that MCT’s may improved cognition in those with mild-to-moderate cognitive decline.

Weight management – Because MCT’s enhance energy expenditure they may have a satiating effect, and are often promoted for weight loss. Always check with your doctor in regards to supplements you may use in conjunction with a weight-loss program.

So there are a few ways that MCT’s may help with your health and wellbeing.  Here are a few ways to start using them to possibly help you on your health journey.  MCT oils can be added to your morning coffee or tea, also to your smoothies.  Start with a small serving to allow your body time to adjust as you slowly work your way up to the desired dose.  Because MCT’s are a simple fat they go through the Krebs cycle and into the stomach quickly and this may cause side effects like loose stomach, dizziness, and headaches.

As always, I present information for you to be able to make better decisions toward your health and better understand how certain supplements may help with your health goals.  Also, this gives you better knowledge to talk with your physician about this and other supplements that you may be wanting to use in search of better health.

Your coach in health,

Charles