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Do Medium Chain Triglycerides Raise Cholesterol

Effects Of Mcfas On The I

The 15 Benefits of MCT Oil (Medium Chain Triglyceride) Dr.Berg

RT-PCR and Western blot analyses demonstrated that the expression level of I-BABP in Caco-2 cells treated with MCFAs or with CA were much lower than the level in those treated with LCFAs with CA and CA group.

Fig. 5

The mRNA and protein expression of I-BABP in Caco-2 cells . Total RNA and total protein were extracted from Caco-2 cells, the mRNA transcription level was measured using real-time PCR analysis, and the protein expression level was measured using Western blot analysis. The housekeeping gene -actin was used to normalize the expression levels, and Critical threshold values were compared in a, while relative light density values were compared in c. aP< 0.05 versus CA group bP< 0.05 versus C18:0+CA cP< 0.05 versus C18:1+CA group a. critical threshold b. section of blots c. grey-scale analysis

The Health Benefits Of Mct Oil

There is research to suggest benefits from MCT oil, including weight loss, appetite suppression, cognitive function, decreased cholesterol, lower risk of cardiovascular disease, lower levels of insulin resistance, and improved Alzheimers symptoms, Wooten says. But all of this comes with a caveat. These are small studies, and the research on MCT oil is still quite young and not conclusive enough to recommend MCT oil yet, says Wooten, adding, though, that MCT can be beneficial for people with health issues like epilepsy and those with certain fat absorption disorders.

Take, for instance, weight loss, one of the most common reasons people take MCT oil. In one study from the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition comparing MCTs to LCTs, MCTs resulted in greater increases in leptin and PYY, or peptide, which increases feelings of satiety and fullness, Flanagan says.

Brain health is another reason people are flocking to MCT oil, and heres why. The brain prefers glucose as its fuel source. Because Alzheimers patients show reduced glucose metabolism in the brain, ketones, which are molecules produced when the liver breaks down large amounts of fat, can act as an alternative fuel source for the brain, Flanagan says.

What Helps Bring Cholesterol Down

A few changes in your diet can reduce cholesterol and improve your heart health:

  • Reduce saturated fats. Saturated fats, found primarily in red meat and full-fat dairy products, raise your total cholesterol. …
  • Eliminate trans fats. …
  • Eat foods rich in omega-3 fatty acids. …
  • Increase soluble fiber. …
  • Add whey protein.

Also Check: How To Manage High Cholesterol

Mct Oil Could Potentially Aid Weight Loss

Although research has turned up mixed results, there are several ways in which MCTs may aid weight loss, including:

  • Lower energy density. MCTs provide around 10% fewer calories than LCTs, or 8.4 calories per gram for MCTs versus 9.2 calories per gram for LCTs (
  • 16 ).

However, keep in mind that many of these studies have small sample sizes and dont take other factors into account, including physical activity and total calorie consumption.

Furthermore, while some studies have found that MCTs could aid weight loss, other studies have found no effects .

According to an older review of 21 studies, 7 evaluated fullness, 8 measured weight loss, and 6 assessed calorie burning.

Only 1 study found increases in fullness, 6 observed reductions in weight, and 4 noted increased calorie burning .

In another review of 12 animal studies, 7 reported a decrease in weight gain and 5 found no differences. In terms of food intake, 4 detected a decrease, 1 detected an increase, and 7 found no differences .

In addition, the amount of weight loss caused by MCTs was very modest.

A review of 13 human studies found that, on average, the amount of weight lost on a diet high in MCTs was only 1.1 pounds over 3 weeks or more, compared with a diet high in LCTs .

Another older 12-week study found that a diet rich in medium-chain triglycerides resulted in 2 pounds of additional weight loss, compared with a diet rich in LCTs .

Dosage Safety And Side Effects


Although currently MCT oil doesnt have a defined tolerable upper intake level , a maximum daily dose of 47 tablespoons has been suggested .

While its also not clear what dose is needed to obtain potential health benefits, most studies conducted have used between 15 tablespoons daily.

There are currently no reported adverse interactions with medications or other serious side effects.

However, some minor side effects have been reported, including nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and an upset stomach.

These can be avoided by starting with small doses, such as 1 teaspoon and increasing intake slowly. Once tolerated, MCT oil can be taken by the tablespoon.

If youre considering adding MCT oil to your daily routine, talk with a healthcare provider first. Its also important to get regular blood lipid lab tests to help monitor your cholesterol levels.

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Ldl And Heart Disease Risk

First, note that LDL cholesterol is not dangerous unless it becomes oxidized and enters the cell wall to form plaques.

Next, only one type of LDL is usually tested.

In fact, the risk is actually more associated with LDL cholesterol size, density, and the number of particles . Two LDL numbers are important and are highly variable in adults: LDL-C and LDL-P.

Mct May Stimulate The Release Of Hunger Hormones

While MCTs may increase the release of hormones that help you feel fuller longer, they may also stimulate the release of hunger hormones in some people .

A study involving people with anorexia found that MCTs increased the release of two hormones that stimulate appetite: ghrelin and neuropeptide Y .

People who took more than 6 grams of MCTs per day produced more of these hormones than those who had less than 1 gram per day.

However, its unclear whether the increase in these hormones actually causes you to eat more.

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Mct Contains Fatty Acids That Fight Yeast And Bacterial Growth

MCTs have been shown to have antimicrobial and antifungal effects (

32 ).

An in-vitro study also showed that coconut oil reduced the growth of a disease-causing bacteria called Clostridium difficile .

Coconut oils ability to reduce yeast and bacterial growth may be due to the caprylic, capric, and lauric acid in MCTs .

MCTs themselves have also been shown to suppress the growth of a widespread infectious fungus in hospitals by up to 50% .

However, note that most of the research on MCTs and immune support has been conducted via in-vitro or animal studies. High-quality human studies are needed before stronger conclusions can be made.


MCT oil contains fatty acids that have been shown to reduce the growth of yeast and bacteria. Overall, MCTs may have a variety of antimicrobial and antifungal effects, though more research is needed.

Adding Mct Oil To Your Diet

MCT Oil (Medium Chain Triglycerides): The Different Types

If you decide to add MCT oil to your diet, use it sparingly. Excessive consumption could not only lead to high cholesterol but also weight gain, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, and heart disease, Flanagan says.

How much is too much, though? The American Heart Association suggests that saturated fat intake be no more than five to six percent of your total daily calories, Flanagan says. If youre eating 2,000 calories, thats 120 saturated fat calories per day. Others, though, recommend that the upper level of saturated fat intake should be 10 percent of total calories.

Regardless, you need to keep saturated fat in your diet as low as possible, and if you want to consume MCT oil, youll need to cut back on other sources of saturated fat, Flanagan says, adding that you should monitor your cholesterol levels while taking it. Each tablespoon of MCT oil contains seven grams of saturated fat , and on a 2,000-calorie diet, thats just a small amount more than three tablespoons to reach that 10 percent limit.

If theres anything that should stick with you about MCT oil, its this. Will it hurt you? Probably not, unless youre taking too much, Wooten says. But based on scientific research, you dont need it to be healthy.

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The Ability Of Mcts To Enhance Exercise Performance Is Weak

MCTs are thought to increase energy levels during high-intensity exercise and serve as an alternative energy source, sparing glycogen stores.

Several older human and animal studies suggest that this may boost endurance and offer benefits for athletes on low-carb diets.

One animal study found that mice fed a diet rich in medium-chain triglycerides did much better in swimming tests than mice fed a diet rich in LCTs .

Additionally, consuming food containing MCTs instead of LCTs for 2 weeks allowed recreational athletes to endure longer bouts of high-intensity exercise .

Although the evidence seems positive, more recent, high-quality studies are needed to confirm this benefit, and the overall link is weak .


The link between MCTs and improved exercise performance is weak. More studies are needed to confirm these claims.

The use of medium-chain triglycerides and MCT oil has been associated with several other health benefits.

Improves Brain Function And Memory

A person gets most of their brainâs energy from glucose. However, according to the Alzheimerâs Drug Discovery Foundation, the brains of people who have Alzheimerâs cannot use glucose as effectively anymore.

Research from 2016 found that the brains of people with Alzheimerâs were able to use ketones at the same level as people without Alzheimerâs. Ketones, therefore, can provide an alternative energy source for the brains of people with Alzheimerâs.

However, the Alzheimerâs Drug Discovery Foundation notes that there is no research to state that MCTs aid long-term brain health.

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Mct Oil Could Potentially Promote Weight Loss

Current research is mixed on this issue, but there are some potential reasons why MCT oil may be beneficial for weight loss.

MCT oil has been shown to increase the release of two hormones that can promote the feeling of fullness in the body: peptide YY and leptin .

One study found that people taking 2 tablespoons of MCT oil as part of their breakfast ended up eating less food for lunch compared to those taking coconut oil .

The same study also found a lower rise in triglycerides and glucose with MCT oil, which may also influence the feeling of fullness.

Additionally, some older studies showed that taking MCT oil could help reduce body weight and waist circumference. Researchers reported that it could help prevent obesity .

Note that some of these studies dont take other factors into account, such as activity levels and other calorie consumption. More research is needed.

MCT oil has about 10% fewer calories than long-chain triglycerides , which are found in foods such as olive oil, nuts, and avocados .

MCTs can also be converted into ketones, which are produced from the breakdown of fat when carbohydrate intake is low.

If youre following a ketogenic diet, which is very low in carbs yet high in fat, taking MCT oil could possibly help you stay in the fat-burning state known as ketosis .


MCT oil may support weight loss by increasing fullness, fat loss, ketone production, and by improving your gut environment. More research is needed to determine its efficacy.

Whats The Deal With Mct Oil

Medium Chain Triglycerides

MCT oil has made waves in the health and wellness industry in recent years, touting a wide range of benefits such as lowering cholesterol, increasing endurance during a workout, lowering blood glucose in diabetics, and improving fat absorption in people with gastrointestinal diseases.

What is MCT Oil?

MCT is short for medium-chain triglycerides, a type of saturated fat found in coconut oil, palm oil, and some dairy products. Coconut oil has the highest concentration with 55% of its fats being MCTs. The product MCT oil, found in many health stores, is manufactured by extracting medium-chain triglycerides from coconut oil or palm oil and purifying it so that only a flavorless, odorless oil remains.

What makes MCTs different from other fat is the way it is absorbed and metabolized in the body. Due to having a shorter chain than other fats, MCTs can be absorbed quickly and travel straight to the liver. The liver then converts the MCTs into a compound called ketones, which are an alternative source of energy. Their efficiency as an energy source makes them less likely to be stored as fat. Does this mean MCTs could potentially be used to assist weight loss? Keep reading to find out.

A Closer Look at Potential Benefits:

Weight Loss


Endurance During Exercise

Learn more about Wellness Workdays and our wellness program offerings by downloading our brochure.

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Will Mct Oil Raise My Triglyceride Levels

Animal research has suggested that MCTs may offer protective effects on cardiovascular health by improving serum lipid profiles however, a new research review finds that MCT oil has no effect on cholesterol levels and may contribute to slightly higher triglycerides [a type of fat found in your blood in which high

What Are The Side Effects Of Mct Oil

Though medium-chain triglyceride oil is considered beneficial to the body, consuming excess amounts of it may lead to certain side effects, such as:

  • MCT oil increases the level of low-density lipoprotein levels in the body and leads to cardiovascular diseases.
  • Individuals with uncontrolled diabetes should avoid having too much MCT because ketone formation can cause complications in these people.
  • Upsets stomach, which can cause:

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What Are The Different Types Of Mcts

Medium-chain triglycerides MCTs are classified into four types, which are distinguished by the number of molecules in their carbon chains. In general, the shorter the chain, the more efficiently the body can process energy from molecules.

  • C6 or caproic acid or hexanoic acid:
  • Made up of 6 carbon molecules
  • Quickly metabolized and ideal for short bursts of energy
  • Frequently removed during processing due to its strong taste and odor
  • C8 or caprylic acid or octanoic acid:
  • Made up of 8 carbon molecules
  • Has antimicrobial properties
  • Useful for short bursts of energy
  • C10 or capric acid or decanoic acid:
  • Made up of 10 carbon molecules
  • Quickly converts to ketones in the liver
  • Beneficial for endurance and mental performance
  • C12 or lauric acid or dodecanoic acid:
  • Made up of 12 carbon molecules
  • Slowest to digest due to its longer carbon chain
  • Still has antimicrobial properties and a variety of health benefits
  • What Is C8 Caprylic Acid

    MCT – too short, too long and Just RIGHT. Medium Chain Triglycerides. – Dr. Boz

    Caprylic acid, also known as C8 or octanoic acid, is a medium chain triglyceride primarily found in coconut oil. Its the shortest of all the medium chain triglycerides, making it the easiest for the body to break down into fuel. Once its consumed, C8 is instantly digested and converted into ketones.

    Structurally, C8 is a saturated medium-chain fatty acid with an 8-carbon long tail, which gives it its nickname, C8. Unlike other MCTs which contain 10 or 12 carbons, C8’s shorter tail means the body can break it down and absorb its benefits faster.

    MCTs like caprylic acid are typically extracted from coconut oil. It can also be extracted from palm oil, a less sustainable source. Additionally, caprylic acid is found naturally in the breast milk of certain mammals like humans and goats. As a matter of fact, the latin word for goat, capra, is the root of caprylic acid!

    C8 can be found in small concentrations in a standard virgin coconut oil , whereas in a standard MCT oil, that concentration rises significantly to nearly 40%. But its most potent source is an isolated C8 MCT oil, where concentrations of C8 as high as 75%-100% can be found.

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    Effects Of Mct On The Mrna And Protein Expression Of Bile Acid Transporters In The Small Intestine

    The mRNA expression levels of I-BABP in the small intestine of C57BL/6 J mice in the CR-MCT groups was lower than that in the other groups. However, the transcription levels of ASBT and Ost/ in the small intestine were not different between groups . Similar results were observed in the protein expression levels of I-BABP, ASBT and Ost/ in the small intestine using Western blot analysis .

    Fig. 3

    The mRNA and protein expression of bile acid absorption transporters in C57BL/6J mice . Total RNA and total protein were extracted from small intestine tissues. mRNA transcription levels were measured using real-time PCR analysis, and protein expression levels were measured using Western blot analysis. The housekeeping gene -actin was used to normalize expression levels. Critical threshold values were compared in a, while relative light density values were compared in c. aP< 0.05 versus CR-LCT group bP< 0.05 versus CR group a. critical threshold b. section of blots c. grey-scale analysis

    The I-BABP expression level detected by immunofluorescence in the CR-MCT group decreased significantly compared to the other groups. There were no significant change in the I-BABP expression levels in the CR-LCT group and CR group .

    Fig. 4

    Immunofluorescence of I-BABP in the small intestine in C57BL/6J mice. The bar represents 50 m in the image. I-BABP was observed as green fluorescence, and the nucleus was observed as red fluorescence

    Effects Of Mct On Bile Acid Profiles In Bile And Faeces

    The concentrations of bile acids, including CA, CDCA, LCA, UDCA and TLCA, in the faeces of the CR-MCT group were significantly higher than those in the other groups. TCDCA in the CR-MCT group was higher than that in the CR-LCT group. The excretions of total primary bile acids , secondary bile acids and total bile acids were significantly different in the CR-MCT group compared to the other groups .

    Table 5 Bile acid profiles in faeces in C57BL/6 J mice after 16 weeks

    There were significant differences in the excretion of CA, CDCA, TCDCA and GCDCA in bile between the CR-MCT group and the other groups. The excretions of total primary bile acids and total bile acids in the CR-MCT group were higher than those in the CR and CR-LCT groups .

    Table 6 Bile acid profiles in bile in C57BL/6 J mice after 16 weeks

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