MCT Oil: The Holy Grail of Oils

All the rage these days are “healthy fats”- whether you are consuming Avocados, coconut oil or flax to consume them, they have an array of benefits for your metabolism, brain health, energy and immunity. So what is the rage now? After doing some initial research and hearing over and over again that MCT Oil was the new wave in nutrition, I tried it and have to agree, so far -it’s awesome.

What are MCTs?

“MCTs” are medium-chain triglycerides, a form of saturated fatty acid that has numerous health benefits, ranging from improved cognitive function to better weight management. Coconut oil is one source of MCTs — roughly 62–65 percent of the fatty acids in coconut oil are MCTs — but recently more concentrated “MCT oils” have also been growing in popularity.

Not to get into an abundant amount of chemistry, but the short chain lengths of the MCT oil molecules versus other similar LCT oils, allows for faster absorption into the body and because of their structure they help create ketones that allow for rapid energy improvement and endurance. This is why athletes and post-surgery patients are especially keen on these oils. Also, in addition to low calorie content, MCTs are not stored in body fat the same way other oils are and they have been shown to enhance thermogenesis (the production of heat/energy in the body) . This combination induces that MCT oils are great for promoting weight loss and evening out your appetite.

Other advantages of the oils are that they can help with clearer thinking, better immune function and post- workout recovery. I was introduced to these by Joe Rogan on his podcast recently and my husband got us a bottle at Whole Foods to try. So we have started adding a tablespoon every morning to our coffee and day 3- I have to see I am noticing a huge improvement in the energy boost. I am going to try it for a post-workout add-in for my Shakeology later today! MCT

How Medium-chain fatty acids can help you:

  • Maintain a healthy weight — since they make you feel full
  • Specifically reduce stored body fat — since they also raise your metabolic function
  • Have more energy
  • Think more clearly
  • Experience better digestion
  • Balance hormone levels
  • Improve your mood
  • Fight bacterial infection and viruses
  • Absorb fat-soluble nutrients from various foods

***Warning, tread lightly when you try this for the first time, friends! I had no issues but some people have a “speedy digestive” response!***

Sources:

6 Health Benefits of MCT Oil — Is It Better than Coconut Oil?

Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs)

https://www.onnit.com/emulsified-mct-oil/

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Finding Zen: In my Hotel Room

I travel for work 50%-60%, this means around 100 hotel nights a year and I can tell you the ins and outs of different brands, different hotel beds, continental breakfasts, hotel proximity to malls and dining. I can honestly say a luxury hotel is really no different than a
Hampton Inn at this point too, it all just blends together and I often find myself confusing my hotel room numbers with a previous stay.

After several years of too many airport drinks, fast food and many varieties of nachos, I am constantly seeking ways to stay healthy on the road and with that I mean both physically and mentally. I miss my family, I miss home cooked meals and I really miss my own bed. This year, fitting in my workouts on the road has gotten easier for me since finding 20-30 minute workouts online are perfect for my constantly fluctuating schedule. IMG_1983What really helped was setting my priorities straight, since I lost my baby weight and made the goal to make 30 my healthiest and best birthday yet. Once I had a goal to focus on and I had made enough progress to see my results, pressing play got easier and I’ve actually found its now more of a habit and easier to keep it up.

As far as eating, convenience is key. I try to find healthy options to go (sushi, salad, vegetarian, etc). One great find is Snap Kitchen (www.snapkitchen.com) that I use when I’m in Texas; they have prepared meals ready to go in a fridge and offer options for every dietary need (vegan, gluten free, nut free, soy allergy, and so on) and the portions have been perfect. Taking food to go is a great time-saver and it keeps me from impulsively ordering appetizers and drinks that really stack-on the calories.

Most importantly, I like to find some quiet time to myself. I do have a 9 month old at home so a little quiet moment of zen and catching up on sleep is what makes me such a better, more patient and productive person when I get home to my family. Travel often like me? Definitely do yourself the favor of taking care of yourself!

Your Fork: NOT the Enemy

We all have had a moment where we have the fork in our hands looking at a delectable dish, mouthwatering and we are ready to DIG IN. The problem comes with the associated guilt we have either before (while looking through that menu gazing beautifully back at us), during (that moment is now..that fork is your hand ready to go) or even after (you are full, maybe too full…oh maybe you shouldn’t have..).  Why is this?? When did this start exactly? Well according to nutritionist, Lynn Penrose, this is a recent construct of society and in extreme forms it’s actually considered an eating disorder. Penrose states it is in fact a direct creation of the media.

All stemming from labels of food as “good”, “bad”, “healthy” or “unhealthy” we envision that we are in breach of some white and black eating regimen and shame ourselves. This persists and grows subconsciously in us because those labels continue to surround us in every form- tv, articles, blogs like this, until we are repeating it ourselves. This manifests itself into behaviors around avoiding things when really it’s quite obvious, of COURSE you can eat dessert! All in moderation. Moderation is a scary word for many and it can be a challenge to know what that point is for our own mental health. I think those that suffer with obesity and other eating disorders can benefit from positive reinforcement which, as a woman, I hope to share more often. That positive reinforcement shouldn’t be “no don’t eat that” but “yes, you had a tasty bite (or two or maybe three) but you didn’t eat the whole pie”.

The next time you and your fork are hand-in-hand oh so in love with the plate awaiting you- resist that guilt and let go for a minute. Hey, that’s what exercise is for anyways!
Fork

 

**Credits: http://www.hercampus.com/health/new-eating-disorder-you-might-not-realize-you-have-food-guilt?page=2**

Image: Shutterstock