CAN MEDIUM CHAIN TRIGLYCERIDES BE STORED AS FAT?

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CAN MEDIUM CHAIN TRIGLYCERIDES BE STORED AS FAT?

Medium-Chain Triglyceride Benefits: The Hard Science.

Part 1: Can MCT be stored as fat?

 

Note: Laurin is pure CocoMCT: Medium Chain Triglycerides plus Lauric Oil, all drawn from and representing the very best of coconut oil. In the series of articles that begins with this article we will draw on hard scientific research to show the health benefits that come from MCT, which comprises the majority of the oil that makes up Laurin.

 

Introduction.

The health benefits of Medium Chain Triglycerides (henceforth, MCT) are well-publicized all over the Internet, whether in conjunction with coconut oil or by themselves. In turn, the frequent repetitions of these benefits draw occasional challenges from critics. It doesn’t help that these health benefits are often presented without citing any specific studies or references, giving people the impression that the MCT is presented just like “snake oil”, and is just as baseless.

In this four-part series we will refer to solid studies in favour of MCT. In the first part we will refer to proofs that taking MCT is not stored as fat, or at least only in negligible amounts that are ultimately outweighed by the overall weight reduction that MCT can cause. In the second part we will refer to proofs that MCT can help manage obesity and adipose tissue (in other words, body fat) and assist in weight reduction. The third will be about MCT’s ability to enhance brain health. The fourth will focus on MCT’s ability to help Alzheimer’s patients.

MCT and Adipose Tissue (Fat Deposits):

That MCT aids in the reduction or management of obesity is beyond challenge, and may be considered as established fact. Before we go on to the different aspects of how it helps manage obesity, we need to deal with the basic question: is MCT itself stored as harmful fat? The answer: MCT is not stored as fat, or at least is stored only in very small amounts that do no harm. The reason is explained by a prestigious reference work on lipids, published in 2012:

 
When absorbed directly, MCTs enter the blood circulatory system through the portal vein and carried to the liver where they are oxidized to ketones. This is because in the mitochondria, transport of MCTs does not require carnitine palmitoyl transferase, a rate-limiting enzyme of b-oxidation. The mostly catabolic fate of MCFAs is evident by the fact that dietary MCTs reduce blood triglyceride levels during human intervention trials. Thus, dietary MCTs induce thermogenesis and do not contribute to weight gain since they are not deposited in the adipose tissue. This has been demonstrated in diet intervention trials involving hypertriglyceridemic human subjects where MCTs reduced body mass index, hip circumference, waist-hip ratio, total abdominal fat, visceral fat, body fat mass, and waist circumference. MCT diets also reduced blood levels of several types of LDL as well as LDL-cholesterol to greater extent than traditional oil that contained long-chain triglycerides. Therefore, MCTs may be used as a means of preventing and treatment of obesity, though the exact molecular mechanism of action has not been fully elucidated apart from the thermogenic effects. (Aluko 2012: 24)
 

A Japanese medical article published in 2001 states more succinctly:

 

Medium-chain triacylglycerols (MCT), composed of medium-chain fatty acids such as octanoic and decanoic acids, are readily hydrolyzed by lingual and gastric lipases. The medium chain fatty acids formed are absorbed through the portal system without resynthesis of triacylglycerol in intestinal cells, are subjected predominantly to b-oxidation in the liver, and are not stored as fat. Consequently, MCT constitute a good energy source for patients with pancreatic insufficiency and fat malabsorption as well as preterm infants with pancreatic juice and bile acid insufficiency (Tsuji et. al 2001: 2853)

 

Octanoic refers to C8 (which we more frequently refer to as caprylic acid) while decanoic would refer to C10 (which we more frequently refer to as capric acid).

An older article even gives to MCT the appellation “fatless fats”, because they are, at the very least, not stored well by the body:

 

MCT and MCFA reveal distinct physicochemical and metabolic properties when compared to LCT and LCFA (4). Schematically, the former lipids either follow specific and shorter pathways or undergo more rapidly the same converting steps as those taken by the latter. As a result, MCT appear as an unconventional fat  and are proposed for use either in oral/enteral nutrition when the digestion, absorption, or transport of LCT is impaired or in parenteral nutrition when a rapid energy supply is desired. These aspects are in keeping with studies showing that the fatty acids delivered by MCT are abundantly oxidized and poorly stored within tissues. As a logical application of these observations, the claim that MCT formulas might contribute to the control of body weight in human subjects has been repeatedly emphasized over the last decades, more especially as MCT were regarded as “light fats” and even as “fatless fats”. (Bach 1996: 708-709)

 

The Nutrition Review in an article published in 2013 that exhibits the same caution as the 1996 article, while adding that its overall impact is to enhance the burning of body fat deposits:

 

In addition to their lower caloric content than LCTs, MCTs are not stored in fat deposits in the body as much as LCTs. Furthermore, MCTs have been shown to enhance thermogenesis (i.e., fat burning). So MCTs seem to offer a triple approach to weight loss – they (1) have a lower calorie content than other fats, (2) are minimally stored as fat, and (3) contribute to enhanced metabolism to burn even more calories. (Dean and English 2013: Paragraph 6)

 

Perhaps the best scientific article directly dealing with MCT and body fat is "The application of medium-chain fatty acids, edible oil with a suppressing effect on body fat accumulation", published in the Asia-Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2008. Although the article as a whole pushes for a synthetic product that merely incorporates the goodness of MCT, it admits that MCT by itself has a positive effect when it comes to helping alleviate obesity. The most important passages are in the 2nd and 3rd pages of the study (pp. 321-322). It is impressive that the article speaks on the "body fat accumulation-suppressing effect" of MCT. This is stronger than saying that MCT assists in dieting or in weight loss, or that it is not stored as fat. This finding makes it clear that, whether MCT is stored (in very small amounts) in the body or not, its overall effect is to reduce body fat, not add to it:

 

 
MCT is less accumulated as body fat than general edible oil which consisted in LCT in laboratory animals, suggesting that MCT prevents obesity, being useful for the prevention of lifestyle-related disorders. However, the suppression of body fat accumulation by MCT had not been fully clarified in humans. Thus, we performed a large-scale study on the body fat accumulation suppressing effect of MCT in humans. A double-blind study was performed in healthy subjects under strict dietary management). Seventy-eight subjects slightly fatter than the average (mean BMI=24.7) ate bread containing 14 g of the test oil daily as breakfast. A total of more than 10,000 lunches and suppers were prepared so that the subjects ate identical meals for 12 weeks. Eating between meals and beverages were also controlled, and the subjects were strictly controlled to ingest 2200 kcal/day containing 60 g of lipids. For body fat measurement, the air displacement method was used for accuracy. In the subjects with a BMI of 23 or higher (slightly fat), the body weight loss was larger in the MCT ingestion group than in the common edible oil ingestion group. (Aoyama 2008: 321)
 
MCT is rapidly digested and absorbed, and suppresses body fat accumulation. (Aoyama 2008: 322)
 

 

Conclusion

 

We have now established that there is enough basis in the publicly-available scientific literature to state that MCT is not stored as fat, and even suppresses body fat accumulation. In the following articles we will show how MCT aids in weight loss and, perhaps more importantly, how it enhances brain health and helps combat diseases such as Alzheimer's.

 

REFERENCES

Aoyama, T., Kojima K., Sekine S., and Takeuchi, H. (2008): The application of medium-chain fatty acids, edible oil with a suppressing effect on body fat accumulation. Asia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition,17, (S1):320-323

Aluko, R.E. (2012): “Bioactive Lipids” in Functional Foods and Nutraceuticals. Food Science Text Series © Springer, 2012

Bach, A.C, Frey, A., and Ingenbleek, Y.,(1996): The usefulness of dietary medium-chain triglycerides in body weight control: fact or fancy? Journal of Lipid Research Volume 37: 708-726.

Dean, Ward and English, Jim, (2013): "Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs) - Beneficial Effects on Energy, Atherosclerosis and Aging" April 22, 2013, Nutrition Review:http://nutritionreview.org/2013/04/medium-chain-triglycerides-mcts/

Tsuji H., Kasai M., Takeuchi H. et. al. (2001): Dietary Medium-Chain Triacylglycerols Suppress Accumulation of Body Fat in a Double-Blind, Controlled Trial in Healthy Men and Women. Journal of Nutrition, 131: 2853-2859.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Getting my lola back from the valley of forgetfulness

by Carlos Antonio Palad

My grandmother Natividad (Lola Naty) was born in 1929. Graduating from college in 1949, she soon became a teacher and was assigned to what is now Baler, Aurora. There she met her future husband, whom she married in 1952. She bore 10 children, nine of whom are still alive.

 

Her life has been full of blessings and memorable events, but it has not been easy. A very active and dedicated mother and wife, she had her first heart attack in her early 50’s. (It is one of my earliest memories of her.) By the time she reached her early 60’s, she had a constant string of health problems with her heart and kidneys, plus diabetes. She also had several falls during which her head usually hit the ground hard. Still she tenaciously clung to life, keeping up visits to her friends, helping care for some of her younger granddaughters (my cousins), going to church daily until she was around 80 years old, enduring the many family problems and the loss of daughter to cancer in 2006, and insisting on cooking three times a day until her early 80’s. She used to be on a strict diet during the 1990’s – the usual no-fat nonsense common at the time that made her rather miserable. Finally she decided to be happier by being more liberated with what she ate. She is still alive at 86. (I also realized at the time that the normal diet fads were not always helpful.)

 

Naturally, her brain has not been immune to all the after-effects of her illnesses and trials. She lost her husband of 58 years in 2010. In 2012 she was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Her decline was rapid. She often forget who her children and grandchildren were. My cousins would often be dismayed when they would go up to her only to realize she no longer recognized them. She remembered me only because I am a frequent visitor to her. Once I asked her what my name is, and she just laughed and said, “ah, basta, kilala kita.”

 

In Feb. 2014 she had a heart bypass. After that a weekly therapy was scheduled for her: one hour of cognitive therapy and another hour of physical rehab (walking, biking). She slowly grew physically stronger but her brain did not catch up. She was asked to draw a clock (the “clock test”) and she could not do it. She had difficulty recalling the date of the current day, or would be able to point it out on a calendar only to forget it within an hour. Once she was asked to provide her address and phone number, and she provided her address and number from the 1980’s! It was as if at that moment her memory of the more recent past was erased! At home my aunt who took care of my grandma had a daily routine: they would review our family photo albums to get lola to recall names, events and dates. It was an endless cycle of remembering and forgetting. It seemed like a hopeless spiral and we all dreaded the time when she would forget everything.

 

Then in May 2014 I encountered Laurin. After its dramatic impact on my life, I introduced it to my family. When my aunts had bought their own bottles and experienced for themselves the good it did, they agreed that my grandmother should adopt it as part of her diet even though her diet (and daily medicine) were strictly regulated. She was diabetic and initially I was hesitant to give her Laurin due to her diabetic condition. You can say we did this against “doctor’s orders”. As a family, we reasoned that at the age of 86 and with her brain function failing, my grandmother didn’t really have anything to lose by testing an “unofficial” but apparently effective product.

 

Beginning September 2014 she began taking 1 tbsp of Laurin a day at 6:30 AM. It was the only Laurin she took.

 

After an initial period of shock during which she experienced loose bowel movement, the improvements began showing up. The results were not “dramatic”, but they were steady.

 

First my grandmother seemed to become stronger. She did not feel any desire to even snack in-between meals, during intervals that often lasted up to 6 or 7 hours. (She used to have a need to snack frequently.) She was much less tired during physical therapy.

 

Second, by October 2014, she could draw a clock again. Whenever she was asked about her address, she gave the correct, current address – not her 1980’s address. Slowly, the names of her grandchildren came back to her, and she could begin to identify faces and events in the photo albums. By March 2015 she had improved so much she was even able to sit down with her younger sister to reconstruct our family tree from memory! Identifying dates became easier for her – not perfect, but vastly better than before.

 

My lola, at 86, still has health problems. During the Christmas break she had another fall that battered her face, and in early March she temporarily slipped into a coma. Once more, we thought it was the end. Once more, she pulled through. Amazing! Her strength is incredible. More importantly, and thanks to Laurin, she is enjoying her final years not just in serenity and quiet, but with a heart and soul enlivened by happy memories.

 

Thank you, Laurin!

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Superb Memory at 93!

By Raffy Diaz

When Jun Lao gave me a sample of Laurin, a special coconut oil formulation with a high strength of the antimicrobial lauric acid,  I immediately  gave it to my 93 year old mother, Mrs. Primitiva Diaz, for wellness of   her health.  She had complained of frequent constipation and a nagging pain in her hips for the past 2 years  which  had rendered her immobile and on wheelchair.   This deprived her of her joy of regularly going to the wet-market although this time, her  friends  from the fish and meat section of the wet-market deliver to her  whatever she needs. She now does the marketing by cellphone.    My siblings and I know she is still grieving over the death of my father  not so long ago and we worry so much about her health so we  all  visit her as often as we could to keep her in bright spirit.  I told her Laurin is a health booster and  taking 2 teaspoon  after  breakfast and another 2 teaspoon after  dinner  could  address her problem of regular constipation. She immediately started taking Laurin as I suggested.

 

After about 3 weeks, I asked her if Laurin had given her some relief on her health concerns.  She claimed that the hip pain which she had suffered for two years had subsided and that she could now stand and walk with the aid of a  walker.  As to the constipation, it was relieved almost immediately and it had been sometime since she depended on the glycerine suppository.

 

After a couple of months  when she was halfway her second bottle, I asked her again  if her walking had improved.  She said that the hip pain has not recurred  and that she could  now stand and cook ( mom is a great cook).  However, she could not remain standing  very long as her legs would become numb.  I told her that it might be  from slow blood circulation because as we get older, the blood thickens.  I suggested to her to get the doctors advise  about taking the blood thining aspirin which my father used to take.  However, what surprised me was  her next statement.  She said that at her age, she now  has a  superb memory.  She can remember many things specially the  “one way” memory.  When I asked her what she meant by  “one way” memory, she said that she can remember all those who owed   her money  but could not remember what she owed others specially my dad. Then she laughs.  Mom really has a very good sense of humor.  Then she adds, be thankful that I have a good memory.  Of course I said  we are happy that she is  blessed with a good memory  at her age enhanced by Laurin.  She then said what she  meant was we are lucky for her good memory as she remembered  to distribute  our  inheritance.   Then she laughs again.

 

Her good memory keeps her in bright spirit as she vividly remembers and  loves to talk about anecdotes when my siblings and I were toddlers.  She recounts many funny anecdotes about each and everyone of us  and her favourite anecdote of me is that  it took me 5 years to start talking ( exaggerated of course ) but I countered that when I  started talking, it was already straight with good grammer. Laughter again!  My sisters always get her to play her favourite  table game  “mahjong”  while  my brother and I provide the humor  because  we don’t know much about.the game and we make mistakes.    With her superb memory,  mom always win.

 

We dread the reality that a day will come when she will finally board the flight to heaven,  but we are happy that good memory will give her a good quality of life in her remaining years.  Thanks to Laurin.

 

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Like Father, Like Son: A Family’s Testimony to Laurin

Gerry Guanlao is a top-ranking manager for Chemrez Technologies, Inc., a position that sees him dealing with a whole range of people on a daily basis, from company executives to junior personnel, while overseeing a bustling plant. To wind down after a week full of daily meetings and decisions, he has developed the habit of biking every Sunday for 15 km. By mid-week he would be imagining his early morning biking route for next Sunday. “It is a rare moment when my mind rests without worry, and no traffic to dodge!” he said during our interview.

In his 50’s he works at a pace that would tax a healthy man half his age. However he has not escaped having problems with his weight and a fatty liver. Gerry was unsure how to overcome these problems. “Unfortunately”, he laments, “I don’t have time to read about the latest in health and fitness! All I can do is bike and hope for the best.”


When Chemrez launched Laurin, Gerry lost no time trying it himself by mixing a tablespoon each with his morning and after-lunch cup of coffee. He says that, after recommending the same practice to his staff, results came almost instantly:  “Laurin helped us to concentrate on work right after lunch, when in the past we would be sleepy despite having coffee. We now have more productive days!” He also experimented by applying it to his hair and skin. “Laurin is better than baby oil for use against dandruff. It is excellent for treating dry skin, skin asthma and scaling, for dealing with sunburns, and restoring skin smoothness.” 

Gerry still takes Laurin religiously. The impact on his stamina and energy levels is dramatic. He narrates, “I used to bike only Sundays. Now I bike up to three or four times a week, and on Sundays I do 20 km, 5 km more than in the past. I used to prepare for my biking routine by eating a banana and taking water with sugar. Now I just mix Laurin with my coffee.” His liver function is also better: SGPT levels are at 48, well within normal levels and down from an above-normal 55. 

But the most dramatic use that he found for Laurin was as a health supplement for his dad Francisco, who is now 88 years old.

“At 87 my father was no longer his old self” remembers Gerry. “He lost his spouse (my mom) in 2013 and was deeply depressed. Long before this loss, dad was already suffering from serious short-term memory loss. His long-term memory remained but he typically could not remember what he had just done.” “At least”, Gerry observed with a naughty smile, “daddy could no longer remember my debts to him!”

Aside from dementia and memory loss, Francisco was constrained by arthritis and gout. He could move about only by using a walker. Sometimes he could not move at all and was confined to his bed. His skin was irritated and marked by scaling.

Initially, Gerry gave fish oil capsules to his father to relieve his depression. After three months his mood had improved somewhat, but Gerry felt that it was insufficient. He turned to Laurin, and improvements came sooner than expected.

"Dad recovered from depression after only a month of taking Laurin. His short-term memory returned. The scaling on his legs also disappeared. His old self came back!" Francisco’s short-term memory dramatically improved so much that, as Gerry related, “he not only regained his memory of all my debts to him, he also began to remind me regularly about the tax payments we needed to make on his land, right down to the exact date on when these taxes needed to be paid!”

Francisco experienced dramatic improvement not just in his memory and brain performance but also his physical health. After several months of using Laurin he  “graduated” to using a cane in order to walk. He is now entering his 88th birthday sprightlier and more vigorous than a year before – just like his son. 

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