MCT (Medium Chain Triglyceride) is a medium length fatty acid found in coconut oil.
Medium Chain Triglycerides are between 8 and 12 carbon chains long.
MCT’s have become popular for brain health with the rise of the bullet proof coffee. This is because they quickly convert into ketones which pass through the blood brain barrier and may boost focus, alertness, cognition and BDNF (Brain Derived Neurotropic Factor).
MCT’s have been used for many decades as a tool to support fat metabolism. One of the mechanisms of action may be the ability for MCT to boost the satiation hormones PYY and Leptin.
PYY (Peptide YY) is released from the small intestines and activates receptors in your brain to tell you enough food has been consumed. It also helps to slow the movement of food through the digestive tract. This helps with more complete digestion and satiation.
Leptin is released from fat cells to tell your brain your cells have enough calories and to stop eating. The problem is continual overeating leads to leptin resistance and the brain no longer responds.
However, Ketones (made from MCT) help improve leptin sensitivity, which may result in greater hunger control and potential calorie reduction.