MCT stands for medium chain triglyceride, and Formulite is now using MCT oil as their healthy fat source.
Claire from @nutritionfoodition on Instagram tells us about MCT oil.
What is a Medium Chain Triglyceride?
When we talk about fats or fatty acids, the common groups we hear often are either saturated/unhealthy or unsaturated/healthy fats. However, we can dive deeper to understand the structure of fat to create an association between how the length of a fatty acid can act on our body to create positive health effects contributing to weight maintenance and fat loss.
‘Triglyceride’ is used as the technical term of fat. Based on the structure of triglycerides, fats can be sub-classified into short chain, medium chain and long chain fats, which are all metabolised differently in our body. They have two main purposes in the body: burned for energy or stored as body fat.
Medium chain triglycerides (MCTs), consisting of medium-chain fatty acids, are particularly researched for their fast rate of oxidation by the liver. This means when ingested, MCTs go straight to the liver and broken down to be used as an energy source. Usually small and medium-chain fatty acids are absorbed directed into the blood through the gastrointestinal tract, however due to the size, long-chain triglycerides (LCTs) are required to be packaged into fat particles in order to be transported around our body in the blood1. This means MCTs skip this ‘repackaging’ step in order to be absorbed and transported around the body1. As a result, MCTs travel directly to the liver, bypassing fat tissues vulnerable for fat absorption, and utilised by the liver as a source of energy1. This accelerated form of transport allows rapid absorption of MCTs at the point of ingestion, as opposed to LCTs2.
Because of this, providing your body with MCTs acts as an efficient way to be turned and used as energy leading to greater energy expenditure when compared to LCTs3. Studies have also demonstrated that the greater energy expended with MCTs compared to long-chains, resulted in greater fat loss benefits, decreased size of fat cells and increased satiety (feeling full after eating) 1,2,3,4. For these reasons, Formulite has improved their shakes to replace LSA fats with MCT oil.
What health benefits does this have on you?
Previously used, LSA is a blend of linseeds, sunflower seeds and almonds, which are all great sources of healthy omega-3 fatty acids. Although omega-3 fatty acids have many health benefits, the fatty acid structure consists of long-chain triglycerides. Now replacing LSA with MCT oil as a fat source in shakes allows greater feeling of satiety and greater energy expenditure leading to weight maintenance and fat loss!
- St-Onge MP. Dietary fats, teas, dairy, and nuts: potential functional foods for weight control?, Am J Clin Nutr. 2005 Jan 1; 81(1): 7-15.
- St-Onge MP, Bosarge A. Weight-loss diet that includes consumption of medium-chain triacylglycerol oil leads to a greater rate of weight and fat mass loss than does olive oil. Am J Clin Nutr. 2008 Marl 87(3): 621-626.
- St-Onge MP, Jones PJ. Physiological Effects of Medium-Chain Triglycerides: Potential Agents in the Prevention of Obesity. J Nutr. 2002 Mar; 132(3): 329-332.
- Maher T et al. Food Intake and Satiety Response after Medium-Chain Triglycerides Ingested as Solid or Liquid. 2019 Jul; 11(7): 1638.