Want to try the Keto diet? Then you need to know about MCT oil
Many people I know want to try the keto diet, or the ketogenic diet, which is supposedly a great way to lose weight, feel healthier and get your body functioning better than it does. There have been dozens of studies on the keto diet, and many people say that it might have benefits against diabetes, cancer, epilepsy and Alzheimer’s disease.
Fat and the keto diet
If you haven’t heard of MCT oil, you’ve probably heard of the keto diet. The keto diet, or ketogenic diet, is similar to the Atkins method in many ways; it’s a low carb diet, that forces the body to use its carbohydrate stores, and gets an elevated level of ketone bodies in the blood, a state known as ketosis. If you try the keto diet, you might find this happens.
These days, we want to know as much about our bodies as possible. To put things simply; fats are made up of molecules that are bound together in a chain that are classified as short, medium or long. MCT oils consist of three main types of fatty acids, including lauric, capric, and caprylic acids. The body needs fat, and as we all know, fat that goes unused gets stored, and ends up as extra weight that we don’t need, or want.
So, wait – what is MCT oil?
I have to admit, that I only recently discovered the benefits of medium-chain triglyceride and what MCT oil really is. It might sound complicated and “sciency” but MCT oils are regarded as a unique form of dietary fat that can impart a wide range of positive health benefits on the human body. It’s not hard to try the keto diet.
In essence, the ketogenic diet only works if it includes all the healthiest sources of fat. You can’t get your fat from just any old source, like fries and burgers (sadly!). You need to aim for foods that are full of healthy fats, such as avocados, nuts and seed butter, walnuts, olives, salmon, tuna and more. However, medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs) are considered to the healthiest sources of fat you can put in your body.
Can I lose weight on the Keto diet?
Many people do lose weight on the keto diet, but how and why exactly? Well, it could be down to this “magical” oil. MCT oil can help you burn fat, and quality MCT product with clean ingredients could help you achieve your goals. You need to focus on eating the right foods, but you can also try MCT products, to get the extra benefits of these healthy fats.
Studies about healthy fats and MCT oils
A study involving 78 Japanese men and women compared the effects of MCT oils on diets with the same amounts of total fat and calories. The measurements after four, eight and 12 weeks showed that those who consumed MCT oils had lost a significant amount of fat.
Another study conducted on 27 obese women who ate medium-chain fats for 27 days and long-chain fats for another 27 days and researchers using MRIs to measure body changes found that more fat calories were burned on a medium-chain fat diet. They thought that they could try the keto diet, and they did.
How does this oil help us to lose weight?
It’s all to do with satiety, really. MCT oil can increase the release of two hormones that instill the feeling of fullness in our bodies, namely peptide YY and leptin. In fact, it may even be more effective than coconut oil in keeping you full. One such study shows that those who took two tablespoons of MCT as part of their breakfast ended eating less for lunch compared to the ones who took coconut oil.
Larry Trivieri Jr., author of Coconuts for Your Health says that MCTs are easier to digest than other fats. He adds that unlike long chain triglycerides (LCTs) that are stored in the body’s tissues, cells and organs, MCTs are stored in the liver, where they are metabolized faster and converted into an alternative source of readily-available energy.
Other benefits of MCT oil
This is where I always add the disclaimer that I am not a doctor, or a nutritionist, just someone who loves to blog about diets. But if you do a bit of independent research, you will find that scientists have discovered that fasting increases the production of ketones, which might reduce the occurrence of epileptic seizures. And since MCTs can be converted into ketones, this can help manage epilepsy.
If you check out the Wikipedia page on the keto diet, you can learn that it was developed in the 1980s to assist with children and seizures. One such study showed positive improvements when one follows a 6-month ketogenic diet course.
What are some keto foods to try?
The good news is that there are loads of excellent keto foods to try, and many different types of food. You can enjoy seafood, cheese, avocados, low carb veggies, meat and chicken, eggs, plain Greek yoghurt and so much more. If you want to try the keto diet, give it a go.