Some of you may have heard the term “MCT” before. When you look at the list of ingredients of our alqemist CBD oil, the abbreviation might catch your attention. But what is MCT oil and what made us choose this ingredient? We'll get to the bottom of this question today.
The abbreviation MCT stands for "medium chain triglycerides". Generally speaking, fats take mostly the form of triglycerides, regardless of whether they are in nature, in our food or in our body. It is a molecule of glycerin bound to three fatty acids. Most of the fatty acids in our food have a chain length of 16 to 22 carbon atoms and are therefore called long-chain fatty acids. In contrast, chains with a length of only 6 to 12 carbon atoms are referred to as medium-chain fatty acids . They are particularly found in coconut and palm kernel oil. However, in isolated form they can also be produced and purchased as MCT oil, which has several advantages.
Most CBD products on the market that are available in the form of drops use oil as a carrier. There are two main reasons for this. On the one hand, CBD is fat soluble and by using oil, it can be better absorbed by the body. On the other hand, a serving of CBD only contains a few milligrams and would simply be too difficult to dose without the oil. In contrast to other manufacturers, we made a conscious decision to use MCT oil for the following reasons:
Many CBD products on the market use hemp oil as a carrier and this decision is obvious. CBD is obtained from the buds of the hemp plant, whereby the seeds can be used directly for the production of the oil. However, hemp oil has a strong inherent taste that many people perceive as unpleasant. The MCT oil we use, on the other hand, is odorless and tasteless, which is why our alqemist CBD oil is very pleasant to consume.
The great advantage of medium-chain fatty acids over long-chain fatty acids is that they are processed differently by the body after absorption. After being absorbed through the wall of the small intestine, long-chain fatty acids, which are most common in our food and also in hemp oil, first need to be packed in special transporters, the so-called chylomicrons, before they can get into the blood via the lymph. Because medium-chain fatty acids are significantly shorter, they can be transported directly into the blood. Therefore, they get directly into the circulation and reach the cells faster . It is believed that this also speeds up the CBD intake.
Furthermore, studies show that MCT fatty acids are less susceptible to oxidation or “becoming rancid” and thus have a significantly longer shelf life . They also have a higher capacity to absorb dissolved substances such as CBD, which can ensure that our active ingredient remains evenly distributed in the product and does not deposit on the bottom of the bottle .
However, MCT oil did not gain such popularity because it is just a great carrier, but because of some alleged metabolic benefits. So let's take a look at what MCT can do.
Some research shows that people who replace part of their daily fat intake with MCT oil lose more weight over time [3, 4]. Furthermore, the intake of MCTs is said to be more satiating than long-chain fatty acids [5, 6]. It is important to note that this is not a result of the additional intake of MCT, but due to the replacement of other oils with MCT oil. The usage of this active ingredient in our products instead of other oils may also provide metabolic benefits. However, it would not be a good idea to add pure MCT oil in large quantities to the current diet without saving fats and oils elsewhere.
The usage of MCT oil in our alqemist CBD oil has several advantages over the usage of other oils as carriers. Firstly, we can avoid an unpleasant aftertaste. Secondly, it can be assumed that MCTs improve the absorption of CBD because they can be absorbed into the blood faster. In addition, MCT oil is particularly durable and can dissolve more substances such as CBD. Even though the daily intake of MCT through our alqemist CBD oil alone is very low, MCTs may offer a small metabolic advantage over oils with long-chain fatty acids, which could result in a slight measurable difference over time if taken regularly.References: 1. Babayan, Vigen K. "Medium chain triglycerides and structured lipids." Lipids 22.6 (1987): 417-420. 2. Kalepu, Sandeep, Mohanvarma Manthina, and Veerabhadhraswamy Padavala. "Oral lipid-based drug delivery systems–an overview." Acta Pharmaceutica Sinica B 3.6 (2013): 361-372. 3. Tsuji, Hiroaki, et al. "Dietary medium-chain triacylglycerols suppress accumulation of body fat in a double-blind, controlled trial in healthy men and women." The Journal of nutrition 131.11 (2001): 2853- 2859. 4. Kasai, Michio, et al. "Effect of dietary medium-and long-chain triacylglycerols (MLCT) on accumulation of body fat in healthy humans." Asia Pacific journal of clinical nutrition 12.2 (2003): 151-160. 5. Van Wymelbeke, Virginie, et al. "Influence of medium-chain and long-chain triacylglycerols on the control of food intake in men." The American journal of clinical nutrition 68.2 (1998): 226-234. 6. Krotkiewski, M. "Value of VLCD supplementation with medium chain triglycerides." International Journal of Obesity 25.9 (2001): 1393-1400.