Why is MCT oil great for athletes?

Why is MCT oil great for athletes?

MCT oil is made up of medium-length chains of fats called triglycerides, hence the name MCT oil. These molecules are smaller than most other fat molecules, so are easier to digest and get absorbed into the bloodstream quicker. This means energy is readily available shortly after consuming MCT oil, which explains why it is a popular supplement amongst athletes and bodybuilders. 

MCT oil is usually extracted from coconut oil as it makes up more than 50% of its fat content, but can also be found in palm oil and some dairy products. In addition to providing a great source of energy, MCT oil also offers numerous health benefits. Find out more below.

Help weight loss and reduce risk of heart disease

MCT oil can aid weight loss in a number of ways. Firstly, it may reduce food consumption by increasing levels of appetite-reducing hormones, peptide YY and leptin, which promote feelings of fullness. Secondly, MCT’s can also be converted into ketones, which are produced as a result of the breakdown of stored fat, when carbohydrate intake is low. This makes MCT oil ideal for people who are following a ketogenic diet, which involves low carbohydrate and high fat intake, as it helps maintain the fat burning state known as ketosis. Lastly, MCT oil may help promote the growth of good gut bacteria, which can help support the breakdown of food and assist with weight loss.

Being overweight is associated with an increased risk for heart disease. Therefore, by promoting weight loss, MCT oil can subsequently help lower risk of heart disease. High levels of LDL (bad) cholesterol is also a contributing factor to heart disease. Research suggests that MCT oil may help reduce risk of heart disease by lowering LDL cholesterol and increasing production of HDL (good) cholesterol.

Great source of energy

MCT’s contain fewer carbons in their fatty acid chains than other fats, known as long-chain triglycerides (LCTs). This means they do not need to be broken down by bile in the liver, like LCTs do, and can be easily absorbed and transported throughout the body to be used as an immediate source of energy. They can also be converted into ketones when following a keto diet to provide a source of energy in the absence of carbohydrates. 

Reduce lactate build up

Another reason MCT oil is popular amongst athletes, in addition to providing an excellent source of energy, is that it helps reduce lactate build up. A buildup of lactic acid during exercise causes pain and muscle weakness, negatively impacting exercise performance. One study found that cyclists who consumed 1.5 teaspoons of MCT oil before exercising had lower lactate levels and better performance.

MCT oil offers a number of benefits that make it an ideal supplement for helping improve athletic performance, or for those looking to lose weight. In addition to the benefits listed above, MCT oil is thought to help improve blood sugar levels, brain function and fight bacterial or fungal infections. Shop our vegan-friendly, premium quality MCT oil and take advantage of the numerous health benefits it has to offer.

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