Coconut oil is very popular in health circles. Not only does it smell amazing and work great in cooking, but it is also thought to provide us with a variety of health benefits. One of the reasons coconut oil is good for us is the presence of medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs).
MCTs are a type of fats known as triglycerides that are easier to digest than a lot of other types of fat. When you hear about coconut oil, you might also sometimes hear about MCT coconut oil.
The Difference between MCT Oil and Coconut Oil
Although coconut oil does contain MCT, it is not to be confused with MCT coconut oil. MCT oil can come from a variety of sources, and coconut is the most common because of its relatively high concentration of MCTs (about 54%). The MCTs in coconut oil include lauric acid (42%) which, although technically an MCT, acts more like a long-chain triglyceride (LCT) which is not so easy to digest. For this reason, coconut oil is not usually considered to be rich in MCTs. Organic MCT coconut oil, however, contains 100% MCTs (not including lauric acid) and is made directly from coconut oil.
Health Benefits of Using MCT Coconut Oil
Studies have shown that MCT coconut oil can offer a range of health benefits, which include:
- Managing Epilepsy
MCT oil is very useful to include in a ketogenic diet, which means low carbohydrates and high fat, and a ketogenic diet has been shown to be able to reduce the symptoms of epilepsy. Thus, MCT can be an effective method of helping to make life a little easier for epilepsy patients. MCT oil may also be able to help manage another condition often associated with epilepsy: autism.
- Antifungal Properties
Studies have shown that MCT oil has antifungal properties. This means it will help to protect us against a variety of fungal infections, including thrush and various skin conditions. MCT oil has also been shown to have other antimicrobial properties, potentially helping to protect us against a range of other infections.
- Anti-inflammatory Properties
It has also been demonstrated that MCT oil has anti-inflammatory properties. This means it can be beneficial with certain inflammatory skin conditions, helping to make the patient feel more comfortable and reduce the visibility of their condition. Other relatively common medical conditions that might be soothed with MCT include arthritis.
- Weight Management
As mentioned, MCT oil is very useful when it comes to ketogenic diets which themselves are effective at helping people to lose weight. That’s not the only reason why MCT oil can help with weight management, however. Studies have shown the MCT oil can help to make people feel fuller for longer. Feeling fuller for longer makes it easier for people to avoid snacking or eating additional meals, thus making it easier for them to manage their weight.
How to Use MCT Oil
How you use MCT oil will depend largely on which ailments you are trying to treat. When it comes to managing disease and keeping your weight down, the oil is typically consumed. The method of consumption tends to involve mixing the oil in with your food, although MCT oil drops can be consumed directly. If you are using MCT oil for problems with the skin or joints then it can be applied topically instead.
MCT oil has a wide range of potential health benefits. It can help to keep our weight down, help with skin conditions, and even help people to manage their diabetes. While it is often used as a part of a ketogenic diet, MCT oil still provides some medical benefits as a supplement to a standard diet, or when used topically. MCT oil is also very affordable, readily available, safe, and very easy to use so there’s no reason not to give it a try and see how it works for you.