What is Emulsified MCT Oil and How Is It Different from Regular MCT?

natural force unsweetened emulsified mct oil stirred into a glass of cold brew coffee with a metal spoon on a wood table with a black background

Unlike regular MCT oil, which separates when mixed with water, emulsified MCT oil is water soluble and mixes easily into both hot and cold liquids. Emulsified MCT oil has all the same nutritional properties of regular MCT oil but has the added benefit of being easier to digest.

In this article, you will learn:

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Emulsification 101

An emulsion is a mixture of oil and water, two substances that normally don’t want to mix due to their opposing molecular charges.

Classic examples of food emulsions include:

  • Salad dressings and vinaigrettes made of vinegar and oil
  • Homogenized milk that contains both fat and water
  • Mayonnaise, which contains water-soluble lemon juice or vinegar and fat-soluble egg yolks and oil

Emulsions can come in two different types:

  1. Oil in water – Ex. heavy cream
  2. Water in oil – Ex. churned butter

The two types of emulsions can also be made three different ways:

  1. Through mechanical force – Ex. whisking mayonnaise. This type of emulsification works initially, but tends to be unstable and oil and water eventually separate back out.
  2. With an emulsifier – Ex. adding sunflower lecithin. Emulsifiers are chemically known as phospholipids, molecules that bind equally to both oil and water allow them to make a stable mixture.
  3. By adding a thickener – Ex. adding flour to drippings to make gravy. Thickeners alter the chemical property of viscosity and stabilize an emulsion by preventing fat molecules from globbing together.

How MCT Oil Gets Emulsified

While we can’t speak for other companies, our Natural Force Emulsified MCT Oil starts with organic, Non-GMO Project verified, expeller-pressed virgin coconut oil.

We use coconut oil because it is a rich natural source of MCTs like c8 caprylic, c10 capric, and c12 lauric acid which are all prized for their impressive health benefits. Palm oil is another common source of raw MCTs, but palm oil plantations contribute to deforestation of orangutan habitats in southeast Asia (and it doesn’t stop there). This is why we source our coconut oil only from environmentally sustainable coconut plantations in Sri Lanka and the Philippines.

The next step is an extraction and purification processes called fractionation and molecular distillation that separates the MCTs from the other fats and organic molecules found in raw coconut oil. This is why MCT oil is liquid at room temperature and coconut oil is solid. The “solid” coconut oil has a higher percentage of long chain fatty acids that solidify at room temperature while the liquid MCT oil is comprised of smaller medium chain fats that stay in a fluid state.

Once the raw coconut oil has been transformed into MCT oil, it is then emulsified through the use of a soluble fiber called gum Arabic. The gum Arabic allows water to blend with the MCT oil, creating a creamy liquid that can mix easily with other water soluble liquids such as coffee or tea. In addition to helping emulsify our MCT, gum Arabic may also help reduce body fat and BMI.

MCT’s are naturally anti-microbial but the addition of water to the mix decreases their ability to ward off microorganisms. To prevent spoilage, we use a natural anti-microbial called sorbic acid that prevents bacteria and other organisms from growing and which allows our emulsified MCT to stay fresh for up to one year in normal, cool and dry conditions.

Emulsified MCT Oil Benefits

Emulsified MCT oil has the same health benefits of regular MCT oil including increased metabolism, improved mental focus, and reduced inflammation, but it also confers additional benefits not found in regular MCT.

  1. Easier digestion: When you consume normal dietary fats, your body has to work hard to emulsify and digest them. This can be difficult for individuals who have had gall bladder removal surgery since they lack the bile salts which are essential to this process. With emulsified MCT oil, the fats are already emulsified, so your body does need to produce as much bile and they can therefore be more easily digested.
  2. Easier use: Regular MCT’s do not want to mix into water-soluble liquids such as coffee or tea, so they require blending or other mechanical means to get them mixed in. Many folks have tried to add MCT to their coffee only to have it form a blistering hot oil slick. With emulsified MCT, this is a non-issue since they can be easily added and mixed with just a spoon.

Emulsified MCT Oil Uses

Since emulsified MCT can be mixed easily into both hot or cold liquids the ways to use it are nearly endless.

To help you get started, here are a few of our favorite ways to use emulsified MCT:

  • Add to your morning coffee or tea for a sugar-free energy boost
  • Stir into sparkling water for a refreshing mid-day lift
  • Blend into smoothies or fresh fruit juices for added healthy fats
  • Mix into oatmeal or chia pudding for a delicious creamy flavor
  • Add to baked goods and improve their nutrient density

E-MCT Pro-tips

In the same way that “cream rises to the top” in whole, homogenized milk, some of the MCT “cream” can rise to the top of your emulsified MCT.

This separation is totally normal and natural, but adding a particularly “creamy” (or “watery”) shot of emulsified MCT isn’t ideal from a taste and consistency perspective.

So, to ensure that you always get the best taste and consistency, always shake your Natural Force Emulsified MCT Oil before each use!

Also published on Medium.