MCT oil: benefits, application & effects

MCT-Öl: Vorteile, Anwendung & Wirkung

MCT is now a common term for many. Especially when it comes to ketogenic diets, MCT oil is becoming increasingly popular because, among other things, it provides quick energy and is good for the brain. But what exactly is MCT oil and why do so many people swear by it?

What is MCT oil?

In the world of nutrition, an abbreviation keeps cropping up: MCT - medium-chain fatty acids . This particular form of healthy fat is often underrepresented in our Western diet, despite providing many benefits to the body. Let's take a closer look at what MCTs are, where they are found, and why they are considered an asset to our health. MCT stands for medium-chain triglycerides , i.e. medium-chain fatty acids. In contrast to conventional fatty acids, MCTs are easier for the body to break down, utilize and digest. This makes them an efficient source of energy and has contributed to their growing popularity in nutritional science.

MCT's are found in various foods, with some natural sources being particularly noteworthy:

  • Coconut oil (15% MCT): A popular oil that not only tastes good but also contains a high proportion of MCT.
  • Palm Kernel Oil (7.9% MCT): Another oil commonly used in cooking that contributes medium chain fatty acids.
  • Cheese (7.3% MCT): Cheese not only has a delicious taste, but also provides a significant amount of MCT.
  • Milk (6.9% MCT): Dairy products can be a natural source of these special fatty acids.
  • Butter (6.8% MCT): A classic in the kitchen that provides MCT as well as taste.
  • Yogurt (6.6% MCT):  A delicious way to incorporate MCTs into your diet.
While natural sources provide valuable amounts of MCTs, MCT oil is the purest form of these bioavailable fatty acids. Its concentration makes it a convenient way to maximize the benefits of MCTs, whether in smoothies, salad dressings or as an addition to various dishes.

Origin and extraction of MCT C8

MCT oil, short for medium chain triglyceride , is a shooting star among health-conscious people. Contrary to popular belief about saturated fat, MCT oil is a healthy fat extracted from liquid coconut oil, but can also be obtained from palm kernel oil and dairy products. The main component is medium-chain fatty acids, whose molecular chains with 6 to 12 atoms are particularly easy to digest.
The length of fat molecule chains plays a crucial role in how our body generates energy. The shorter the chain, the faster the fat can be converted into energy. MCT oils are therefore lightning-fast energy suppliers, in contrast to long-chain fatty acids, which only release their energy hours after eating.
Coconut oil, especially MCT oil, contains various medium-chain fatty acids such as:
  • C6 (Caproic Acid): Caproic acid is an MCT with six carbon atoms.
  • C8 (Caprylic Acid): Caprylic acid is an MCT with eight carbon atoms. It is often referred to as the fastest absorbed and metabolized MCT.
  • C10 (Capric Acid): Capric acid has ten carbon atoms and is also easily absorbed by the body.
  • C12 (lauric acid): Lauric acid is the longest MCT with twelve carbon atoms. Although it is an MCT, it is metabolized somewhat more slowly than the shorter MCTs.
The latter makes up the majority of MCT oil and remains liquid at room temperature, making it easier to handle and process.

Coconut oil VS. MCT oil

Is MCT oil the same as coconut oil? - No. The most noticeable difference is that MCT oil is liquid at room temperature, while coconut oil is solid.
In addition, MCT oil is obtained through the targeted extraction of fatty acids from natural sources such as coconut oil. The main focus is on the concentration of these bioavailable fatty acids. Essentially, MCT oil offers a pure form of MCTs and therefore a convenient way to incorporate these fatty acids into your diet in higher concentrations. The advantage lies in the targeted enrichment with the specific fatty acids without the addition of long-chain fatty acids.
Coconut oil, on the other hand, is extracted directly from the flesh of the coconut and naturally contains MCTs. It stands out for its versatility in the kitchen and has a characteristic taste and smell. However, the fat content of coconut oil does not consist exclusively of MCTs, but also contains long-chain fatty acids. Coconut oil is therefore a natural source of MCTs, but in a mixture with other fatty acids.
Overall, MCT oil emphasizes the targeted concentration of medium-chain triglycerides, while coconut oil, as a natural source of MCTs, has a broader spectrum of fatty acids. Both have their uses depending on individual nutritional needs and preferences.

The power of MCT oil: More than just quick energy

MCT oil, which is often confused with coconut oil, is becoming increasingly popular, especially among followers of the ketogenic diet. In contrast to other saturated fatty acids, our body reacts differently to MCT oil. The easily digestible fatty acids are quickly transported to the liver and converted into ketone bodies. This rapid provision of energy not only has a positive effect on physical performance, but also on mental concentration and endurance.
MCT oil has established itself as an insider tip in the sports world. Athletes report an increase in performance and lower lactate formation in the muscles. MCT oil also offers benefits for people on a ketogenic, paleo or intermittent diet. It creates a long-lasting feeling of satiety and is processed efficiently by the body because the fats are not stored.

MCT oil effect: health benefits

Omega fatty acids and MCT oil

The absorption of omega fatty acids, especially DHA and EPA, can be increased by MCT oil. These essential fatty acids are important for the brain, cardiovascular system, hormones and immune system.

Brain Health

The positive effects of MCT oil are not only subjective experiences, but are also supported by scientific studies. MCT oil has been shown to improve memory and overall brain function in people with memory, including potential benefits for people with Alzheimer's disease or other cognitive disorders.

MCT oil and ketosis

If you want to dive into the world of the ketogenic diet, MCT oil is a loyal companion. It helps put the body into the sought-after state of ketosis by burning fat instead of glucose. The rapid absorption of MCT oil increases ketone production even as you continue to consume carbohydrates.

Weight management

The benefits of MCT oil extend to weight management. It fills you up faster, stimulates metabolism and reduces the conversion of excess carbohydrates into fat. Studies show that taking MCT oil can help burn fat.

energy supplier

MCT oil is not only suitable for the kitchen, but also for the gym. Studies show that it increases muscle strength and can even help improve endurance.

Immune booster

MCT oil, especially the lauric acid it contains, not only supports energy supply, but has been proven to have antibacterial, antiviral and antifungal properties.

The triple shield

MCT and blood sugar - The increasing number of diabetics in Germany is alarming and the search for effective solutions is more important than ever. MCT oil could be the key. Studies have shown that MCTs increase the body's insulin sensitivity and thus counteract insulin resistance. A balanced blood sugar level is crucial and MCT oil can make an important contribution here.

MCT and the Liver - Studies have shown that MCTs, found primarily in coconuts, have a protective effect on the liver and digestive system. In addition, MCTs have the potential to reduce the risk of fatty liver disease, one of the most common liver diseases worldwide. Scientists suspect that this is due to the ability of MCTs to minimize the accumulation of toxic substances in the liver.

MCT and cholesterol levels - balanced cholesterol and lipid levels are crucial for a healthy heart and body. MCTs can act as a savior here by helping to lower the amount of harmful cholesterol in the body and reducing cardiometabolic risk factors. This natural balance can have a significant impact on long-term heart health.

Taking MCT oil

Slow approach to MCT oil - Before diving into the world of MCT oil, it is important to slowly accustom the body to this supplement. Start with one teaspoon of MCT oil per day. This avoids possible negative reactions such as diarrhea or stomach pain that can occur if introduced too quickly.

Increasing the amount after a week - If the body tolerates the teaspoon of MCT oil well, you can slightly increase the amount after a week. This gradual increase allows your digestive system to adapt and minimizes the risk of unwanted side effects. Increase the amount to 1 to 2 tablespoons of MCT oil per day.

Important Notes on Using MCT Oil - It is important not to consider MCT oil as a complete replacement for other fats in the diet. The body requires a variety of fats for different functions, and avoiding them completely can lead to deficiency symptoms. MCT oil should be used as a supplement and not as a replacement to ensure your body gets all the nutrients it needs.

Applications of MCT oil

The versatility of MCT oil makes it particularly attractive for integration into everyday life.

In nutrition

For athletes and people who lead an active lifestyle, MCT oil can be a valuable addition to their diet. Whether taken pure, mixed into smoothies, stirred into yoghurt or as an ingredient for the trendy bulletproof coffee - MCT oil adapts flexibly to any lifestyle. Bulletproof Coffee, a mixture of ghee, MCT oil and coffee, promises long-lasting energy, reduces the feeling of hunger during intermittent fasting and promotes concentration.

In the kitchen

If you prefer something a little lighter, you can also stir MCT oil into salad dressings or vinaigrettes. However, patience is required when taking it. It is recommended to start with one teaspoon per day and slowly increase the dose to a maximum of six teaspoons per day.

MCT as a carrier oil

It transports cannabidiol (CBD) and other beneficial phytochemicals. This function is based on a simple principle: the carrier oil serves as a solvent to remove the active components of the hemp plant from the hemp extract so that they can be better absorbed by the body. This concept is used not only in CBD products, but also in other areas, such as in the production of powdered beverage concentrates such as Kool-Aid, where the powder is dissolved in water, or in the production of dishwashing detergents. The main difference is that unlike water, CBD oil uses fat-soluble carriers. This is because cannabinoids are not water-soluble, but fat-soluble.

What is a carrier oil

As already mentioned, MCT oil is also often used as a carrier oil, especially in combination with CBD oil. But what is a carrier oil and what benefits does it bring?
A CBD carrier oil is an oil that serves as a base for the absorption of CBD (cannabidiol) and other phytochemicals. It acts as a solvent that extracts the active ingredients from the hemp extract and makes them more available to the body. Essentially, the carrier oil carries the CBD molecules and helps distribute and absorb them effectively.

Benefits of using carrier oils in combination with CBD

Improved Absorption: CBD is fat-soluble, meaning it is better absorbed by the body when combined with a carrier oil. The carrier oil helps emulsify the CBD molecules, facilitating their absorption through the gastrointestinal tract.

Easy dosage: CBD in its pure form is often difficult to dose. Diluting CBD in a carrier oil simplifies dosing because the CBD is evenly distributed throughout the oil. This makes it easier for consumers to precisely determine and control the desired dosage.

Additional health benefits: Many carrier oils offer additional health benefits such as antioxidant properties, high levels of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, or antimicrobial effects. By using a high-quality carrier oil, CBD products can not only achieve the desired effects of CBD, but also provide additional health benefits.

Improved Taste: Some carrier oils have a pleasant taste and can help mask the often bitter taste of CBD. This can make taking CBD products more enjoyable and improve consumer compliance.

The most common CBD carrier oils and their properties

There are a variety of carrier oils that can be used for CBD products. Here are some of the most common ones with their pros and cons:

MCT oil (medium chain triglycerides)

Advantages: High absorption rate and therefore enables rapid absorption of CBD, neutral in taste and long shelf life.
Cons: May cause stomach problems in some people, not suitable for all diets.

Hemp seed oil

Benefits: Hemp seed oil is rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids, which are important for heart and brain health. It also has a natural hemp flavor and may provide additional health benefits.
Cons: Hemp seed oil can have lower CBD absorption compared to other carrier oils and a strong taste that isn't for everyone.

Grapeseed oil

Benefits: Grapeseed oil has a high absorption rate and is rich in antioxidants that may have anti-inflammatory properties. It has a fruity taste.
Cons: Can be more expensive than other carrier oils, not as widely available as some other options.

olive oil

Advantages: Olive oil is rich in plant nutrients and tastes pleasant. It also has a slow release of CBD, which can result in long-lasting effects.
Cons: Olive oil can have a lower CBD absorption rate and a strong taste compared to other carrier oils.

Vegetable glycerin

Benefits: Vegetable glycerin has a sweet taste and can be used in e-cigarettes and vaporizers. It is also a cost-effective alternative.
Cons: Possibly lower CBD absorption compared to other carrier oils, sticky consistency.


CBD oil vs. MCT oil

The world of supplements has exploded in recent years, and two products in particular that are in the spotlight are CBD oil and MCT oil. But what exactly is the difference between the two?

CBD oil

MCT oil

CBD oil comes from the cannabis plant, but don't worry, it doesn't get you high! Because it is important to know that CBD is not psychoactive, unlike its famous counterpart THC. CBD has gained popularity in recent years as it offers many potential health benefits. MCT oil, or medium-chain triglycerides, is a type of fatty acid that is shorter than the long-chain fatty acids found in most dietary fats. MCT oil is used, among other things, to support weight loss and as a source of energy.

Origin and extraction:

CBD oil is extracted from hemp plants, which are often organically grown. The extraction process guarantees a pure and high quality product. MCT oil is obtained from natural sources such as coconuts or palm kernels. It contains fat molecules that are easily absorbed by the body, resulting in rapid energy provision.


CBD (Cannabidiol): This is the main ingredient in CBD oil. CBD is a non-psychoactive compound derived from hemp. It is being researched for its potential health-promoting properties, including anti-inflammatory, pain relief, anxiety reduction, and more.

Carrier Oil: CBD is usually dissolved in a carrier oil to facilitate dosing and improve absorption. Commonly used carrier oils include hemp seed oil, olive oil, MCT oil (medium chain triglycerides) or coconut oil.

Terpenes: Terpenes are aromatic compounds found in many plants, including hemp. Not only do they contribute to the aroma of the oil, but they can also have additional health benefits. Terpenes can vary depending on the type of hemp and can also be found in essential oils.

Other cannabinoids: In addition to CBD, other cannabinoids can also be found in hemp. Some CBD oils may contain small amounts of THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), which has psychoactive properties, but usually below legal limits.
It is important to check the product description and CBD oil label to understand the exact composition and dosage. Additionally, CBD laws and regulations vary from region to region, so it is important to ensure that the product meets legal requirements.

MCT oil is the abbreviation for "medium chain triglycerides"

These are a type of fatty acid that is shorter than those in most other dietary fats. MCTs are more easily and quickly absorbed and metabolized by the body than long-chain triglycerides (LCTs), which are found in most other dietary fats. Here is a typical composition of MCT oil:

C6 (Caproic Acid): Caproic acid is an MCT with six carbon atoms.

C8 (Caprylic Acid): Caprylic acid is an MCT with eight carbon atoms. It is often referred to as the fastest absorbed and metabolized MCT.

C10 (Capric Acid): Capric acid has ten carbon atoms and is also easily absorbed by the body.

C12 (lauric acid): Lauric acid is the longest MCT with twelve carbon atoms. Although it is an MCT, it is metabolized somewhat more slowly than the shorter MCTs.

The exact composition may vary depending on the manufacturer and product. MCT oil is often obtained from natural sources such as coconut or palm kernel oil. It is often used as a carrier oil for CBD oils because it is easily digestible and can improve the bioavailability of cannabinoids.

MCT oil is also commonly used in the ketogenic diet because it provides a quick source of energy and is easily converted into ketones. 

Mechanism of action:

CBD interacts with the body's endocannabinoid system, which plays an important role in regulating various processes in the body. It can have a calming effect, reduce inflammation and even help with sleep problems. Fast energy delivery: MCTs are easily absorbed by the body and converted in the liver into ketones, which provide quickly available energy. Ketogenic Diet Support: MCT oil is popular among those following a ketogenic diet because it can shift the body into a ketogenic state.


Stress Relief and Anxiety Relief: Many people use CBD oil to relieve stress and anxiety. CBD can interact with receptors in the endocannabinoid system, which can result in a calming effect.

Improving sleep: CBD oil is used by some people to treat sleep disorders and improve sleep quality. It can have a calming effect and reduce stress, which in turn can lead to better sleep.

Pain Relief: CBD has anti-inflammatory properties and can be used for pain relief. This can help with chronic pain, arthritis or muscle pain.

Nervous system support: There is evidence that CBD can have a supportive effect on neurological diseases such as epilepsy. In some cases, an FDA-approved CBD medication has even been developed to treat certain forms of epilepsy.

Anti-inflammatory effect: CBD can have an anti-inflammatory effect, which makes it interesting for people with inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis or inflammatory bowel disease.

Skin Care: Some people use CBD oil topically to treat skin problems such as acne. The anti-inflammatory properties can help reduce skin irritation.

Treating Anxiety: CBD can help relieve the symptoms of various anxiety disorders, including social anxiety, generalized anxiety, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).

Healthy Aging: Some people use CBD oil as part of their health care as they age. CBD is believed to have antioxidant properties that may contribute to overall health and well-being.

Energy booster: The rapid absorption of MCTs by the body and the conversion in the liver into ketone bodies ensure quick and efficient energy supply. Many people use MCT oil as an energy boost, especially before training.

Weight management: MCTs can help increase satiety, which in turn can lead to reduced calorie consumption. Therefore, MCT oil is a popular dietary supplement for people who want to control their weight or lose weight.

Supporting a ketogenic diet : Followers of the ketogenic diet use MCT oil to put the body into a ketogenic state. The ketones produced when MCTs are digested can serve as an alternative source of energy when the body switches from burning fat to burning carbohydrates.

Mental clarity and concentration: Some users report increased concentration and improved mental clarity after taking MCT oil. The rapid delivery of energy from ketones can help increase mental performance and alertness.

Carrier oil for dietary supplements: Due to its neutral taste and good tolerance, MCT oil is often used as a carrier oil for other fat-soluble dietary supplements. This also includes combining it with CBD oil to increase the bioavailability of CBD.

Uses in the kitchen: Due to its high heat resistance, MCT oil is good for cooking and frying. It represents a healthy alternative to conventional cooking oils.

Differences and Similarities:

The main difference between CBD and MCT oil lies in their origin, composition and intended use. While CBD oil is known for its potential health benefits, MCT oil primarily serves as an energy source. Importantly, MCT oil is often used as a carrier oil for CBD oil because it can improve the absorption of CBD in the body.


Overall, both CBD and MCT oil offer unique benefits and can be useful in different situations. If one is looking for health benefits, CBD oil may be a better choice. However, if you're looking for an energy source or following a ketogenic diet, MCT oil might be the right supplement for you. However, before making a decision, it is advisable to speak with a healthcare provider to ensure that the products meet individual needs.

MCT oil for dogs

You may be wondering whether your dog needs MCT oil or whether MCT oil is good for dogs and cats. This is a question many pet owners and their veterinarians are asking themselves as MCT oil has become increasingly popular in recent years. - Here you can go directly to Calma CBD oil for dogs .

What is MCT oil and how does it work for dogs?

MCT oil, which is derived from coconut oil, has become increasingly popular recently as its benefits for dogs become more apparent. MCT oil is primarily recommended for chronically ill dogs, but can also be beneficial for healthy animals. The positive effects include energy supply, good digestion and shiny fur.

How much MCT oil can I give my dog?

Veterinarians recommend starting slowly to observe the dog's reaction. The recommended dosage is 1-2 teaspoons per 5 kg of body weight.

Possible side effects and how to avoid them

MCT oil is relatively safe, but slow introduction is important to recognize possible side effects. Dogs with lactose intolerance may experience diarrhea. Avoid use in dogs with lactose intolerance, pregnant or lactating dogs, and dogs with pancreatitis.

Which dog food can MCT oil be best combined with?

Both canned and dry food are well suited to the addition of MCT oil, and there is no need to worry about picky dogs either.

MCT oil as a valuable addition to dog food

If you want to give your dog an extra boost of energy or are concerned about the quality of their food, MCT oil could be a good addition to their daily food. MCT oils provide healthy fats and easily digestible calories that can help with chronic conditions like arthritis or diabetes. MCT oil also pairs well with CBD to maximize health benefits.

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Prof. Dr. Niemeyer

CALMA CBD expert

Dr. Niemeyer is a renowned expert in the field of cannabidiol (CBD) research. With a doctorate in pharmacology, she specializes in researching the therapeutic uses of CBD. Through years of work, she has made significant contributions to the scientific community and is internationally recognized for her research on the effectiveness of CBD for various medical conditions, including pain relief, anxiety and neurological disorders. Their work has not only deepened the understanding of how CBD works, but also helped open new avenues for the development of CBD-based therapies. Dr. Niemeyer is passionate about educating people about the potential benefits of CBD.