Medium-chain triglycerides, or MCTs, are saturated fatty acids known for providing a number of health benefits. Of all MCT sources, coconut oil is said to be one of the best, although there is a growing demand for MCT oil concentrates today.
The following are some of the most significant health benefits of MCT oil:
Weight Loss Management
Research says MCTs promote thermogenesis and fat oxidation, leading to reduced fat deposition. It is believed that these fatty acids help the body produce ketones, creating the same effect as the ketogenic diet without having to restrict carb consumption. MCTs are even sometimes called “the ultimate ketogenic fats” because of their ability to generate heat that the body can instantly use for energy, especially in a low-carb diet.
Heart Disease Prevention
The role of MCTs in the prevention of cardiovascular disease has something to do with their anti-inflammatory properties as well as their obesity-curbing effects (for example, promoting satiation and improving digestion. Studies performed in 2010 and published in the Journal of Neutraceuticals and Functional Foods demonstrated MCTs’ ability to block the development of metabolic syndrome, a group of metabolic disorders like hypertension and dyslipidemia (excessive blood lipids).
Increased Energy and Mood Management
As the brain basically consists of fatty acids, you should have a steady supply of them to maintain good mental function and mood regulation, perform well at work, and preserve a sharp mind through aging. Moreover, MCTs are believed to be among the most easily digested and utilized fatty acids known to man, aside from being some of the most protective as well. In a 2004 study featured in the Journal of Neurobiology of Aging, it was found that coconut oil MCTs help improve memory, even in older Alzheimer’s patients.
Better Digestion and Nutrient Absorption
MCTs help maintain balance of bacteria in the gut microbiota, thereby improving digestive processes, energy utilization and the body’s ability to absorb fat-soluble dietary vitamins and minerals, such as vitamin E, lutein, phosphorous, calcium, and the like.
MCTs do not only work to balance good bacteria in the gut, but also fight the ones that actually cause illness, such as Streptococcus (causes strep throat) and Neisseria (causes gonorrhea). This is very good news at this time when antibiotic resistance is becoming more and more of a problem.
People who mostly eat Western foods are believed to have an MCT deficiency, which is partly because they think that saturated fats are always harmful. But recent studies have actually proven this to be false. Of course, before you purchase MCT oil, do a lite research on the supplier. These fatty acids may be good for the health, but not all MCT products are created equal when it comes to their quality.