Medium Chain Triglycerides, or MCT’s, have become a mainstay of the ketogenic way of eating. Many people put them into their keto coffee, or in water while fasting in order to spur on ketone production. Some ketogenic diets, like Dr. Terry Wahls’ “Wahls Protocol”, have MCT’s that make up a significant amount of the dietary fat. Regardless of how you’re using them, Medium Chain Triglycerides are metabolized quickly in the body and can be used for energy fast.
There are three main MCT’s – C8, Caprylic Acid, very well tolerated by most and very quickly metabolized; C10, Capric Acid, which tends to be a large part of what causes digestive issues with MCT’s (if you experience them) but are also quickly metabolized; and C12, Lauric Acid, which is the majority of the MCT’s in Coconut oil. However, Coconut oil also contains quite a bit of non-MCT’s as well, so some people choose to use an ultra-pure, processed and filtered version of MCT’s called MCT Oil.
When I started keto 2+ years ago, the only brand of MCT Oil available was Dave Asprey’s Bulletproof-branded oils XCT and Brain Octane oil. I was putting it in my coffee because that’s what Jason Wittrock did. Some of the issues that come with MCT Oil, however, are digestive issues and heartburn. Those tend to occur, as noted above, with C10 vs C8. Most MCT Oil brands contain a mix of both C8 and C10, as it’s less expensive. The best MCT Oils, however, are pure C8 – less digestive issues, faster metabolization, etc. KetoQuest can get you a 10% discount on Perfect Keto’s C8 Oil here: http://ketoquest.com/product/100-pure-c8-mct-oil/
Enter MCT Powder. About a year and a half ago, I started noticing companies selling MCT Oil Powder. The big claim I noticed at first is that they would mix far better into liquids or other recipes than MCT Oil. I’ll be honest, I’ve never personally tried it, but people who have say that it mixes smoothly and doesn’t leave an oily residue in the liquid like the MCT Oil does. There are also indications that MCT powder helps resolve stomach upset issues, and can also be used to add quick-metabolizing fats to baked goods like muffins, pancakes, or more easily mixed into water or tea. Additionally, MCT powder comes in a number of flavors – I’ve seen far more flavored powders than oils for sale. MCT’s are powdered through a process that requires it to be bound to a fiber, and a lot of brands add in a whole lot more suspect ingredients than just the fiber. Make sure you’re reading your labels! KetoQuest can also get you a discount on Perfect Keto MCT powder here: http://ketoquest.com/product/mct-oil-powder/
What’s best is unclear, so we’ll leave it to personal preference. Try them both! Perfect Keto sells an unflavored MCT Powder, so even if you’re sensitive to all the keto-approved sweeteners (like me) you can give it a shot. I’m going to, and will update this post if there’s anything dramatic or amazing I find/feel/get from the powder vs regular old MCT Oil.
by Chris Wolf