What is MCT Oil?

What is MCT Oil?Last week I wrote about some other uses for MCT oil if you don’t drink butter coffee for whatever reason. As it turns out, you can add it to just about anything. But before you start adding it to your smoothies and oatmeal, wouldn’t you like to find out just what exactly MCT oil is?

First, let’s look at the acronym: MCT stands for medium chain triglycerides. MCT is composed of a number healthy fatty acids that are medium in length.  The fats that we get from most foods–and the fat that our body stores–are long in length. Small and medium length triglycerides are a good source of energy because they are easily metabolized by the body which is one reason why so many athletes are starting to discover and try MCT oil.

One of the richest sources of MCT is the coconut. MCT oil is made by extracting the caprylic and capric fatty acids from coconuts, resulting in a relatively unflavored, clear/yellowish liquid that can be stored at room temperature. Pure coconut oil or coconut cream is solid at room temperature and obviously has the flavor of coconut.

If MCT oil comes from coconuts, why not just use coconut oil or coconut cream in your smoothies or butter coffee instead of more expensive MCT oil?

MCT oil takes the “good stuff” (the medium chain triglycerides) from coconut oil and removes all the other stuff. Medium chain triglycerides comprise about 60% of coconut oil, so while it could be cheaper in the long run to use virgin coconut oil instead of MCT oil, you might use more of it. And because MCT oil is a liquid and essentially flavorless, it’s much more versatile, allowing you to integrate it into your existing diet easily without having to learn any new recipes.