Digestion, Heart, Skin Conditions | February 9, 2018 | Author: Naturopath
Caprylic acid is a medium-chain fatty acid found in coconut oil. It contains potent antibacterial, antifungal and anti-inflammatory properties. This makes caprylic acid helpful in treating yeast infections, digestive disorders, skin conditions, urinary tract infections and oral infections. It also has the ability to lower the risk of antibiotic resistance. Caprylic acid can be naturally consumed as part of foods or taken as an individual supplement.
As a saturated fatty acid, caprylic acid (sometimes called octanoic acid) contains eight carbon atoms— making it a medium-chain triglyceride (MCT). MCTs are metabolised more like carbohydrates than fats and are quickly used for energy. The richest source of caprylic acid is coconut oil and coconuts, but other natural sources include full fat cow’s milk, peanut butter, palm fruit oil and human breast milk.
There are many ways in which caprylic acid can improve your health— from acne, to fighting infections and reducing intestinal inflammation associated with digestive conditions.
It is common for people to suffer from fungal infections which include oral and vaginal thrush, nail fungus, athletes foot and jock itch. Yeasts overgrowths such as Candida can occur in the intestines and lead to digestive problems such as bloating, irritable bowel syndrome, constipation, sugar cravings and depression.
Caprylic acid is so effective is treating yeast infections because it can break down the cell membrane of the candida cell.
A 2011 study found that caprylic acid rapidly reduced symptoms associated with infection from Candida albicans and other co-existing pathogens including helicobacter pylori and cytomegalovirus. Researchers found that caprylic acid is superior in terms of efficacy to Diflucan for treating these infections and provided rapid, superior relief. The same study suggests that caprylic acid is best taken alongside omega-3 fish oil supplements for additional anti-inflammatory and immune support—with the ability to increase normal cell telomeres. Decreased cell telomeres is associated with ageing, thus this study highlights caprylic acids potential application in cancer, ageing, Alzheimer's disease, Autism, infection, & general circulatory improvement.
Due to its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties, caprylic acid is effective in treating skin conditions, particularly with a bacterial and fungal origin.
In acne, the commensal bacteria Propionibacterium acnes (P. acnes) is thought to be involved in acne inflammation. One study found that two fatty acids naturally found in coconut oil, lauric acid and caprylic acid, were effective in fighting off P.acnes.
Coconut oil may also be beneficial for people who suffer from dry skin—including cradle cap, eczema and psoriasis.
Worldwide concerns regarding antibiotic resistance has resulted in an increase in research and treatment strategies involving natural derivatives. Caprylic acid has been included as one of these alternatives which has the ability to fight of infections without the risk of mutations developing.
If ingested caprylic acid, doesn’t wipe out healthy levels of bacteria like antibiotics would, which helps to support healthy immune and digestive function instead of impairing it.
Caprylic acid has been reported to exert antimicrobial activity against a wide range of micro-organisms including multi-drug resistant Pseudomonas aeruginosa, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus, E Escherichia coli, Salmonella enteritidis and Candida albicans. These benefits can be useful in food preparation and in healthcare settings.
Medium chain triglycerides such as caprylic acid are often used in the treatment of digestive disorders such as Crohn’s disease and short-bowel syndrome.
This is because of its antibacterial and anti-inflammatory properties which inhibit the secretion of inflammatory enzymes and cells. Most importantly it reduces the release of a protein called interleukin 8 which is responsible for causing inflammation in the intestines in Crohn’s disease. As a result of supplementing with caprylic acid, symptoms such as pain, bloating, bleeding and bowel problems are reduced.
Caprylic acid is a medium-chain fatty acid which has been proven to have a positive effect on lowering high cholesterol. A 2006 animal study found that the subjects that were fed 2 structured triglyceride oils (including caprylic acid) had lower blood cholesterol levels and lower aortic accumulation of cholesterol than those who weren’t.
A 2013 study supported these findings. Those given caprylic acid reported unaffected HDL, or “good” cholesterol levels and reported lower levels of LDL, or “bad” cholesterol.
Omura Y, et al. Caprylic acid in the effective treatment of intractable medical problems of frequent urination, incontinence, chronic upper respiratory infection, root canalled tooth infection, ALS, etc., caused by asbestos & mixed infections of Candida albicans, Helicobacter pylori & cytomegalovirus with or without other microorganisms & mercury. Acupunct Electrother Res. 2011;36(1-2):19-64
Hoshimoto A, et al. Caprylic acid and medium-chain triglycerides inhibit IL-8 gene transcription in Caco-2 cells: comparison with the potent histone deacetylase inhibitor trichostatin A. Br J Pharmacol. 2002 May; 136(2): 280–286
Wilson TA, et al. Structured triglycerides containing caprylic (8:0) and oleic (18:1) fatty acids reduce blood cholesterol concentrations and aortic cholesterol accumulation in hamsters. Biochim Biophys Acta. 2006 Mar;1761(3):345-9