MCT oil for weight loss & IF

July 2, 2020
Lyndall McAlpine

I’ve never been a big coffee drinker but I know I am a minority. As with most health topics you can always find studies for pros and cons, as always my motto is moderation… coffee is quite acidic and messes with stress hormones so I have always advised eating along with your cuppa so as to reduce these negative effects. So when bullet proof coffee came the rage a few years ago I was quite interested in the idea. I had this post half written for over a year now… thanks to my client I got off my # and finished it off (with studies included of course!)

By now you have probably heard of bulletproof coffee, if not or if you would like to understand how it is helpful  for intermittent fasting and losing weight then this may interest you

As I have explain in previous posts, Intermittent Fasting (IF) is about eating within a time window of around 8 hrs and fasting for around 16 hrs (eg early dinner and no breakfast). It took a lot for me to get on board with this one as for years I was advising my clients to start the day with a good high protein, good fat breakfast (there were good studies to support this) but after looking into things I have now decided it may suit some people and breakfast may suit others…. We are all different and should never be put in the same health regime basket.

So why bulletproof coffee?

Adding milk to coffee stops any fasting procedure, however although caffeine intake in a fasted state actually increases your ability to burn fat and can be used strategically to increase ketone levels and subdue hunger, black coffee can cause havoc to stress hormones if taken excessively and without accompanying food. 

Bulletproof coffee, is black coffee with a dash of MCT oil, butter or coconut oil. I am focussing on MCT oil…

Why MCT oil? 

Compared to LTCs (long-chain fats), MCTs (medium chain glycerides) are smaller and don’t require special enzymes in order for our bodies to utilise them, therefore are absorbed more easily. MCT is made from coconut oil but CO contains only 55% MCTs, butter 8% MCTs

note: grass-fed butter will give your BP coffee a yummy creamy flavour, it’s a good source of butyrate (for gut health) and contains important nutrients like vitamin A, beta-carotene, and the fatty acid CLA so feel free to try this along with MCT oil.

Not only are MCTs easy to digest, but the body burns them for fuel rather than storing them as fat, they have been shown to decrease fat and increase lean muscle mass.

MCTs decrease both cortisol and adrenaline. They help the caffeine in coffee to be  absorbed slower and provide longer-lasting energy – reducing jitters and crashes.

Taking MCT oil in the morning is a great way to extend your IF, it triggers the release of hormones that help keep you satisfied and full without switching on digestion, so you can stay in a fasted state longer and allow the body to tap into fat stores while fasting. 

Ketones

The purpose of fasting, or intermittent fasting, is for the the liver to break down stored body fat to produce ketones for energy rather than carbs/glucose.

MCTs are easily converted into ketones This causes blood levels of ketones to rise automatically providing a sort of “ketogenic short cut”.

Eating a high-fat, low carbohydrate (ketogenic) diet is one way to provide ketones to the body. By reducing your carb intake, your body is forced to use up its glycogen stores for energy – and eventually, switch to using ketones as fuel. I have not suggested a full keto diet to any of my clients – it is quite strict and to be honest I am still not 100% happy with the nutritional value and long term health implications of some strict keto plans, but I have always believed reducing carb intake will help with weight management and overall health.

Other Benefits of good oils

Consuming MCTs and other ‘healthy’ fats like fish oil, and olive or avocado oil may also help lower insulin resistance by increasing insulin sensitivity. They also have been seen to be anti-inflammatory, and supportive of your gut environment which is connected to healthy immune system and overall good health in so many ways


Well I hope that explained things easily enough. Please don’t hesitate to contact me if you have any queries I may be able to help you with.

I am available for private Health Coaching and also have some great affordable Programs you can check out on programs page. This is one of my popular ones

I am continually updating my 10 Day Cleanse. It is a gentle 10 days clean eating (with full meal plan of yummy GF, DF, SF real food recipes), supplementing and learning how to improve your health with simple strategies you CAN incorporate into your lifestyle. You can learn more here


Resources

Caffeine Intake Increases Plasma Ketones: An Acute Metabolic Study in Humans https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/28177691/

Associated With Lower Initial Body Weight and Greater Loss of Subcutaneous Adipose Tissue https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12975635/

MCFAs don’t stimulate pancreatic lipase and bile and can be absorbed from the small intestinal cells… they are then transferred directly into the portal vein for transport to the liver for hepatic metabolism https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18407910/

…MCT oil can be incorporated into a weight loss program without fear of adversely affecting metabolic risk factors. https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2874191/

Total Energy expenditure was 48 and 65% greater in lean and obese subjects (respectively) after MCT compared to LCT consumption https://academic.oup.com/ajcn/article-abstract/53/5/1130/4731857?redirectedFrom=fulltext

…relatively low-to-moderate intake of MCT may play a role in the control of human body composition by enhancing daily energy expenditure https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/8654328/

MCT consumption reduced food intake https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4192077/

lower rise in triglycerides and glucose with MCT oil compared to coconut oil https://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/abs/pii/S0031938417302111

Medium-chain Triglycerides Increase Energy Expenditure and Decrease Adiposity in Overweight Men https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/12634436/

Gut Microbiota and Metabolic Health: The Potential Beneficial Effects of a Medium Chain Triglyceride Diet in Obese Individuals https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4882694/

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