MCT Oil is becoming a popular supplement with fitness enthusiasts, bio-hackers, athletes, and celebrities. This unique oil turns into ketosis fast to give you energy. More so, you only need as little as a teaspoon of the supplement per day. In turn, the oil may sit in your cupboard for weeks after you open it as you continue using it in small quantities. Then, does MCT oil go bad? MCT oil can last up to two years, but it’s possible to extend the shelf life. Learn all about this topic below.
What Is MCT Oil?
MCT oil stands for medium-chain triglycerides (MCTs). It is a smaller type of fat that is easily digestible, absorbs fast into the bloodstream, and turns into energy within 20 minutes of intake. Indeed, unlike other fats, MCT oil can bypass some digestive processes. For example, you do not need bile from the gallbladder to help you digest MCT oil. The oil goes straight into your bloodstream to spike ketones.
Where Do MCTs Come From?
Scientists extract MCT oil from palm kernel or coconut oil through fractionation. The oil may comprise capric acid (C10), caprylic acid (C8), caproic acid (C6), or lauric acid (C12). Still, most brands prefer using C10 and C8 in their MCT oils for unique benefits. These oils can last up to two years with proper preservation. Also, one common misconception is that MCT oil and coconut oil are the same. Yet, coconut oil contains about 55% MCTs. On the other hand, MCT oil is 100% MCTs.
MCTs vs. LCTs
Know that fats are from fatty acid chains. Triglyceride is the chemical term for fat, and medium-chain refers to the chemical structure. Hence, MCTs comprise medium-length fatty acids. In contrast, LCTs have long chains. Typical LCTs include stearic acid, myristic acid, and arachidic acid. LCTs are in most animal fat, fish, and avocados. Indeed, MCTs can be processed faster and more efficiently. Likewise, they convert quicker into energy instead of being stored as fat. On the other hand, LCTs are harder to digest. It is this quality that makes all the difference between MCTs and LCTs.
MCTs as Carrier Oil for CBDs
Cannabidiol or CBD oil is another potent supplement with numerous health benefits. For example, the oil can offset anxiety and depression, diminish PTSD symptoms, treat opioid addiction, and select epilepsy syndromes. Yet, CBDs take a long route to reach the bloodstream. They pass through the digestive system, get metabolized by the liver, and then disperse as a circulatory system. At every stage of this process, some CBD gets lost.
Emulsifying CBDs with MCTs facilitates processing CBDs more like carbohydrates than fats. Plus, CBDs move through the digestive system quicker and do not need to be hydrolyzed by bile in the liver. Hence, it is faster and more efficient to process CBDs, leading to more and quicker health benefits.
The Benefits of MCT Oil
Here is a list of some of the benefits of MCT oil:
1. Essential in a KETO Diet
MCT oil is an excellent supplement for Keto-dieters. Indeed, adding MCT oil to a KETO diet makes you feel fuller for longer. Plus, MCTs have fewer calories than other fats. They facilitate your transition into ketosis to attain weight loss.
2. Helps Sustain Intermittent Fasting
Do you struggle with hunger pangs when on an intermittent fast? Taking a teaspoon of MCT oil before your fast will keep you feeling full all day.
3. Antifungal and Antibacterial Properties
Did you know that MCTs minimize the concentration of certain harmful bacteria and fungi without harming the beneficial strains? Indeed, the supplement promotes the growth of beneficial bacteria and fungi for better gut health.
4. Performance Boost for Athletes
Athletes that take MCT oil 30 to 45 minutes before training experience a boost in performance to sustain longer workouts.
5. Boosts Brain Health
Did you know that the first isolation of MCTs from coconut oil was for managing epileptic seizures in the 1950s? Indeed, MCTs promote the production of ketones, responsible for boosting brain health. In turn, the supplement helps treat neurological and mood disorders like stroke, traumatic brain injury, Alzheimer’s disease, Parkinson’s disease, and epilepsy.
6. Increases the Bioavailability of Other Supplements
Bioavailability refers to the amount of an active ingredient that reaches the bloodstream after you ingest it. Supplements that use MCT oil as a carrier oil pass through the digestive tract intact. That way, a higher amount of the supplement reaches the bloodstream faster.
What Are the Drawbacks to Using MCT Oil?
1. Mild Laxative Effect
Note that MCT oil has a natural laxative effect. In turn, some first-time users of the supplement may experience some digestive upsets. For this, start with half a teaspoon and gradually increase it up to a full tablespoon.
2. May Slow Down Weight Loss
When MCTs turn into ketones, they provide your body with energy. In turn, you burn less body fat and may experience a slower weight loss effect. Still, starting your workout with MCTs gives you the endurance you need to get through strenuous exercises.
3. Has Limited Nutrients
Since MCT oil is a refined product that fuels your body, it lacks the essential nutrients. Hence, you need to be on a balanced diet when consuming MCT oil.
How Do You Use MCT Oil?
Use MCT oil in any of the following ways:
- Include the oil in your diet when fasting
- Add it to your early morning coffee or tea for mental focus to start your day
- Take it half an hour before your workout for energy and endurance
- Put it in your salad dressing to increase its absorption
- Make Keto fat bombs for easy snacking
- Add it to your guacamole or nut butter
- Cook with it at temperatures below 320°F
- Take it with supplements or fat-soluble vitamins
How Long Does MCT Oil Last?
Does MCT oil go bad? When kept in a cool and dry place, MCT oil and powder will have a shelf life of up to two years. You may extend the shelf life by a few months if you refrigerate the oil at sub-freezing temperatures.
How Do You Tell If MCT Oil Has Gone Bad?
Here are some tell-tale signs that your MCT oil has gone bad:
- It has a rancid odor
- Develops a terrible taste
- Changes its original color
- Has visible contaminants
What Does MCT Oil Taste Like?
MCT oil has no taste or smell.
How Do You Store MCT Oil?
Store your MCT oil in a cool and dry place, away from direct sunlight or heat.
Can You Freeze MCT Oil?
Yes. MCT oil freezes when stored at sub-freezing temperatures of below 32°F. Unlike coconut oil that solidifies in the fridge, MCT oil retains its liquid state.
Now you know the answer to “Does MCT oil go bad?” As more research on MCT oil continues, more benefits are sure to be discovered. Hence, ensure you keep your MCT oil in optimal conditions to preserve it for at least two years.