MCTs: Leaner, better mental and physical performance and less hunger.
I work hard, normally at least 12 hours a day and I have to switch between coaching, strategic thought, analytical thought and creative thought. I deal with dozens of people and hundreds of little tasks. In such a small company a few days of low productivity and crappy attention is extremely costly.
I wanted to know exactly which breakfast would give me the best mental and physical performance for the first half of the day. I rated my brain 1 - 5 each morning upon waking and each at 11:00, searching for something to give me a consistent 5.
When I added MCTs to the mix I had to change the rating scale to include a 6! Adding a couple of table spoons of this oil made an enormous shift in my perception. My hunger was non existent until 2pm (bare in mind I eat breakfast at 5am), my concentration was incredible, my clarity, focus and energy all hummed along at a consistent high level. I never looked back.
Here’s why they’re so good, and why I recommend you give them a go.
What are MCT’s?
MCTs are saturated fats that get absorbed and metabolised in a very special way. Making them interesting to anyone wanting to perform better (in life and sports). they are found in coconut oil and palm oil. You first ever consumed them in your mothers breast milk (which is 10% MCTs)!
What do they do?
The body converts MCTs into ketones very quickly, this up-regulates fat metabolism, meaning you use more fat for energy. The combination of having readily available ketones and up-regulating fat metabolism not only fuels excellent brain function but also serves to regulate hunger extremely well. This combination gives you stable energy and enhanced mental performance for hours after consumption.
Research shows that if you give two groups of people MCT oil first thing in the morning and let them eat whatever they want for the rest of the day, they will self regulate to eat less that a control group fed no MCTs. Leading to greater fat loss and more muscle preservation.
Equally, take two groups who both eat the exact same amount of calories and macronutrient breakdown, but one group gets MCTs. The MCT group will still lose more fat and even gain more muscle.
When certain bodily organs run on ketones they benefit from a protective effect. The brain particularly, suffers from less oxidative stress when on ketones as opposed to glucose, which helps to protect against neurodegenerative diseases like parkinson’s and Alzheimers. They heart also does very well on ketones.
How best to use them?
First thing in the morning is best. Your body is already in a fat burning mode first thing in the morning and thus boosting ketone count with MCTs has a significant impact on how you feel and burn fat.
This strategy is especially useful when trying to get “fat adapted” or in the early days of a ultra low carb diet. Also especially useful if “fasting”. They make all these scenarios much easier to bare, if not quite pleasant.
Taking them pre workout if fasted or on a very low carb diet gives immediate energy. Taking them post workout can enhance fat utilisation for longer post training, possibly leading to greater fat loss.
Best Ways of getting them in?
Blended in coffee: Use 1 - 2 tbsp in black coffee and blend. The blending is very important as it will emulsify the lipids, making the drink like a latte rather than a black coffee with oil floating on top.
I think they work great on scrambled eggs.
If you use one of our “EP Blends” to start the day as a quick solution, MCTs work brilliantly in all recipes.
Failing any of those options you can just take it right off the spoon, It’s pretty much tasteless apart from a very mild coconut flavour.
What to avoid?
Avoid taking MCTs with carbs. They will still raise ketone levels in the blood but your body will not make great use of these and you will not get the enhanced fat burning mechanism you’re likely after. Carb intake regulates fat metabolism so the two together are counterproductive.
Avoid taking too much in one dose. The gut has a tolerance for MCT oil. If you exceed it you will know. Enough said!! Start with 1 tbsp and go as high as three if you do well. Titrate the dose up slowly.
Which Brand Do I Choose?
I use the bulletproof XCT or Brain Octane oils. I trust that company, they tend to make very good, pure, potent products. In the UK I buy mine from a great website called www.functionalself.com. Because I’m recommending them they have agreed to a 10% discount code for your first order should you choose to buy from them.
Just use: eperformance10 at the checkout.
I am sure there are other good brands out there, look out for oils made using palm oil (it tends to be horrific for the environment) go for pure coconut products instead. Make sure that you only buy oil containing caprylic and capric acids not lauric acid. Or only C8 and C10 fatty acids not C12.
C12 is sometimes classified as a MCT but is metabolised like an LCT and provides none of the above benefits.