Caprylic acid, also known as C8, is a powerful medium-chain triglyceride that’s found in coconut oil, MCT oil, and breast milk. Though it commonly gets lumped in with other MCTs, caprylic acid has an impressive variety of unique benefits that set it apart from its counterparts. On its own, caprylic acid can aid in weight loss, increase ketone production, fight infections, improve skin conditions, fight yeast infections, lower cholesterol, and calm digestive disorders like leaky gut.
Read on to find out exactly how caprylic acid can help you.
In this article, you will learn:
- What is C8 Caprylic Acid?
- Is Caprylic Acid the Same as MCT Oil?
- What Does Caprylic Acid Do for the Body?
What is C8 Caprylic Acid?
Caprylic acid, also known as C8 or octanoic acid, is a medium chain triglyceride (MCT) primarily found in coconut oil. It’s the shortest of all the medium chain triglycerides, making it the easiest for the body to break down into fuel. Once it’s consumed, C8 is instantly digested and converted into ketones.
Structurally, C8 is a saturated medium-chain fatty acid with an 8-carbon long tail, which gives it its nickname, C8. Unlike other MCTs which contain 10 or 12 carbons, C8's shorter tail means the body can break it down and absorb its benefits faster.
MCTs like caprylic acid are typically extracted from coconut oil. It can also be extracted from palm oil, a less sustainable source. Additionally, caprylic acid is found naturally in the breast milk of certain mammals like humans and goats. As a matter of fact, the latin word for goat, capra, is the root of caprylic acid!
C8 can be found in small concentrations in a standard virgin coconut oil (between 5-10%), whereas in a standard MCT oil, that concentration rises significantly to nearly 40%. But its most potent source is an isolated C8 MCT oil, where concentrations of C8 as high as 75%-100% can be found.
Is Caprylic Acid the Same as MCT Oil?
Technically, no. Caprylic acid is a component of MCT oil, the same way MCT oil is one of the components of coconut oil. However, depending on the extraction process, some brands of MCT oil can contain much higher concentrations of caprylic acid.
Both standard MCT oil and isolated C8 MCT oil have their own unique benefits - which one to use simply depends on your health and wellness goals!
Here are a few different ways to enjoy caprylic acid in MCT oil:
- Contains over 6.5 grams of C8 MCT per serving. Also contains 4.5 grams of immunity-boosting C10 (capric acid), and 1.3 grams of highly antibacterial C12 (lauric acid)
- Benefits: Increased energy, immune system-boosting
- Contains 3.6 grams C8 MCT per serving and 2.7 grams of C10 MCT
- Benefits: Increased energy, imrpoved focus, suppressed appetite
- Contains 13 grams of C8 MCT per serving
- Benefits: Accelerated weight loss, enhanced ketosis, lowered inflammation, stabilized energy levels, suppressed hunger
Essentially, you'll get the benefits of caprylic acid by taking any form of MCT oil, but if you're specifically after any of the potent benefits caprylic acid has to offer, your best bet is to take a concentrated C8 MCT Oil.
What Does Caprylic Acid Do for the Body?
Caprylic acid has impressive antibacterial and antifungal benefits that can aid digestive issues, accelerate weight loss, and clear acne. Read on to discover seven powerful ways C8 could benefit you!
1. Fights Fungal & Bacterial Infections
Caprylic acid is known for its powerful antibacterial properties that can fight infections and strengthen the immune system. What’s more, studies show that caprylic acid’s ability to stop the growth of bacteria is so powerful that it may be able to replace the need for antibiotics in certain cases.
2. Boosts Weight Loss
C8 provides a powerful trifecta of benefits when it comes to weight loss. First, it can improve overall digestive health in the gut microbiome, helping you digest food better.
Second, C8 can increase energy expenditure, which can help the body to burn more of what it consumes as energy instead of storing it as fat.
And third, C8 was also recently proven to have a significant effect on ghrelin, the hunger hormone that increases appetite. By binding itself onto ghrelin peptides, caprylic acid can suppress ghrelin production, preventing you from feeling hungry and experiencing cravings. As if that’s not already helpful enough, C8 can also help increase the body’s levels of leptin, the hunger hormone that alerts the brain when you’re full.
3. Calms Inflammatory Digestive Disorders
By dramatically reducing inflammation in the gut and killing harmful bacteria in the gut microbiome, C8 may work wonders on improving digestive disorders like IBS, Crohn’s disease, and leaky gut. This is thanks to C8’s ability to lower the levels of certain protein compounds in the body that cause inflammation in the intestines, such as interleukin 8.
4. Increases Ketone Production
As we stated earlier, C8 is the shortest type of MCT, meaning it’s able to be rapidly absorbed and converted into ketones that provide long-lasting fuel for the body. While this boost in ketones is especially helpful for keto dieters who want to enhance ketosis, C8 can be beneficial for anyone.
Ketones can be used by the brain instead of glucose (sugar). On top of that, the fatty acids from C8 are used as fuel for many cells throughout the body to improve physical performance.
5. Treats Skin Conditions & Acne
For those dealing with acne, C8 is a proven homeopathic remedy that can clear up unwanted breakouts. In addition to acne, C8’s powerful antibacterial, antifungal, and antimicrobial properties are effective at treating skin conditions like eczema that are caused by candida.
6. Fights Yeast Infections & Candida
C8 has naturally potent antifungal properties that can kill the bacteria and stop the overgrowth of yeast that’s responsible for common issues like nail fungus, vaginal yeast infections, and candida.
What’s more, oil pulling with antifungal C8 oil can treat oral thrush, which is a candida yeast infection that occurs in the mouth.
7. Lowers Cholesterol
Another way C8 improves overall health is with its unique capability to lower cholesterol levels in the body. Several studies have found that taking C8 significantly increased HDL levels (the “good” cholesterol that lowers “bad” LDL cholesterol). One study found that each 1mg increase in HDL cholesterol in the participants decreased the risk of coronary artery disease by 2-3%.
While MCT is already a nutrient-dense oil, using one that’s rich in C8 offers a higher concentration of caprylic acid’s health benefits.
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