What does it mean to be the best MCT Oil?
There are a lot of MCT oil products on the market. At last count, Amazon carried over 400 different products. Before we started to compile our list of the best MCT oils, we had to decide what it really meant to be the best. We set some very high and specific standards for the MCT oils that make our list. The very best must meet 5 criteria.
First, the oil must be organic. There are several different systems for certifying something organic, and we are not going to judge any of them, but no MCT oil deserves to be crowned as the best unless the manufacturer at least CLAIMS it to be organic. We are, for the most part, forced to rely on the integrity of the manufacturer on this until more is known about the specific source of the oil. Organic MCT oil is surprisingly rare. That is not to say that MCT oil is horribly contaminated, but there are few sources of organic coconuts available and they can’t be created overnight.
Most people would not argue that organic is better than non-organic, but how much it matters really depends on the product. Mark’s Daily Apple lists products you should buy organic and those where it just doesn’t make that much difference. Check him out.
Sourced 100% from coconuts
To receive our “best” label, MCT oil must be made exclusively from coconut oil. The other option is palm oil, and while there are claims of “rain forest friendly” or sustainably produced palm oil, these are often untrustworthy claims and palm oil production in places like Malaysia has been devastating for the rain forest and orangutan habitat. Even the RSPO (Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil) certification has been shown in Greenpeace’s “Certifying Destruction” report to be questionably sustainable. With the level of damage being done to the forests as a result of palm oil production, we are not comfortable putting any MCT oil containing palm oil on our list of the very best.
NOTE: In March of 2020 we revisited our decision to exclude all palm oil sourced products from our best list, including those RSPO certified. This review included a visit to Malaysia and speaking with some people involved in the reforestation effort there. We are still not comfortable endorsing any MCT oil that is sourced from palm oil. To read more, see our article, “RSPO Palm Oil now acceptable?”
Next, it must be non-GMO. This is easy to do since to our knowledge there are no GMO coconuts in the world. Most MCT oils on the market claim to be, and probably are, non-GMO.
Just C8 (Caprylic Acid)
C8, or caprylic acid, is widely viewed as the best MCT oil. It converts to energy faster, is very unlikely to be stored by the body as fat, and very seldom results in stomach upset. The other three common MCT oils, C6 (caproic acid), C10 (capric acid), and C12 (lauric acid) are all less effective and possess one or more unpleasant properties.
NOTE: It is almost impossible to make a pure, 100% C8 MCT oil, so we accept anything 95% or higher. The Intentionally Bare product claims 99.2% C8.
Only the liquid form of MCT oil meets our high standards. There are now powdered forms of MCT oil, but they almost always contain fillers in the form of a carbohydrate. Some even contain maltodextrin which has a glycemic index equal to that of pure sugar (high glycemic index is bad…mkay).
Now that you know what makes an MCT oil great, lets actually look at the best ones. We had hoped to have a list of the top 10, but to be honest, we could not that many that met all the criteria. Not even 5. In fact, we only found 3. (UPDATE…added a 4th oil that meets our high standards)