Benefits of MCTs

The coconut cream in Take Two Barleymilk is a great source of healthy fats called medium chain triglycerides (MTCs). Coconut cream is simply a blend of ripe coconut flesh and coconut water. MCTs are commonly found in coconut, palm kernel oil and some dairy fats. They are a type of saturated fat, but they are not the same as the often-vilified, long-chain saturated fats.

Unlike long chain saturated fats and other types of fats, MCTs are rapidly broken down and absorbed, due to their shorter carbon atom chain length. MCTs diffuse straight from the digestive tract into the bloodstream where they are transported to the liver. From the liver, they can be sent to cells throughout the body to be used for instant energy or they can be transformed into ketones to fuel the brain when glucose isn’t readily available. The ability for MCTs to be rapidly absorbed and converted into ketones makes them an important source of energy for those following a ketogenic diet.

By contrast, long chain fatty acids are broken down in the stomach and small intestine, absorbed into the intestinal cells, rebuilt back up, packed into transport molecules, then released into the lymphatic system and ultimately the bloodstream. This process takes a while. In the meantime, the body uses other fuels leaving these fats for last which often means they get stored as body fat.


Some of the health benefits of MCT’s include:

  • Effective in management of gastrointestinal disorders, because of their unique absorption method
  • Promote heart health by lowering LDL cholesterol (bad) and raising HDL cholesterol (good)
  • Have been shown to increase fat-burning and decrease fat storage within the body
  • Can increase feelings of fullness, thus reducing caloric intake throughout the day
  • Have antibacterial and antifungal effects
  • Have ketogenic properties, making them the subject for promising research on helping manage epilepsy, Alzheimer’s disease, and Autism

Overall, exchanging MCTs for other fats in your diet can positively impact your health. For athletes they provide a quick source of energy and help promote use of fat for fuel. They are useful for those with digestive issues because they bypass a complex process of absorption, breakdown, transport, and release. They provide heart health benefits as well as potential weight management effects. So, what are you waiting for? Give MCTs a shot and reap the benefits for yourself!

By: Mitch Thisius, Take Two's New Product Development Manager, Registered Dietitian

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