The Best Time of Day to Use MCT Oil

female runner with bent arm looking at her watch

Medium chain triglycerides (MCTs) are special types of fat that rapidly convert to energy. They have all kinds of benefits – from fat loss to mental clarity – and they mix easily with almost anything, from coffee to food. Subbing MCT oil in for another type of fat (like olive oil) is one of the easiest ways to upgrade your energy and mental clarity.

But what’s the best time to take MCT oil? Does timing make a difference?

MCT oil is beneficial at any time of the day, but you can strategize your timing to maximize certain goals. Here are some ideal times to use MCT oil:

1) In the morning for focus and fat loss

When you take MCT oil, your liver rapidly converts it into ketones, little bundles of energy that your cells can use for fuel.

There are a lot of benefits to using ketones for fuel. Two of them are:

  • MENTAL CLARITY. Your brain is especially good at using ketones – so much so that ketones can reverse symptoms of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s. No studies on healthy humans yet, but enough people report a mental boost from MCT oil that it’s worth trying for yourself.
  • FAT LOSS. When people added MCT oil to their food instead of olive oil, they burned about 300 more calories per day and gradually lost body fat. Ketones also suppress hunger, which helps people burn off even more fat without feeling deprived.

Try adding MCT oil to your morning coffee or tea. It pairs beautifully with caffeine for an extra mental boost and it helps you kick off your day in fat-burning mode. You can add MCT oil alone (it’s flavorless and odorless), add a tablespoon of emulsified MCTs, or you can go the extra mile and try our dairy-free keto coffee recipe.

2) Pre-workout for quick energy with no crash

Because MCTs convert to ketones within minutes, your muscle cells can grab those ketones and use them for fuel to help you push through a tough workout. MCT oil isn’t a stimulant, so it won’t keep you up like caffeine will, and it doesn’t mess with your hormones or cause a crash the way sugar does.

Take a shot of MCT oil before you hit the gym. On days when you’re tired, it’ll perk you up. On days when you’re feeling good, it’ll help you push your limits.

What Else to Consider When Taking MCT Oil

There’s no bad time to take MCT oil. It’s always good to have some in the kitchen for sleepy mornings or days when an afternoon slump hits.

We, of course, recommend our 100% pure coconut MCT oil. It’s ethically and sustainably sourced from coconut farms in Sri Lanka and the Philippines. We have an emulsified version too in a delicious natural vanilla flavor (you can read a quick explanation of normal vs. emulsified MCTs here).

If you get your MCT oil elsewhere, we have one tip: check the label for palm oil. Some companies derive their MCTs from palm. It’s cheaper, but the palm industry is one of the most ecologically destructive industries on the planet. It’s rapidly destroying rainforests and threatening the global orangutan population. So please, consider only using 100% coconut-derived MCT oil.

We’d love to hear when you take your MCTs. Let us know in the comments below.


Also published on Medium.