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Medium-chain Triglycerides

Excipient (pharmacologically inactive substance)

Medically reviewed by Last updated on May 11, 2020.

What is it?

Medium chain triglycerides (MCT) are a medical food derived from fatty acids (6 to 12 carbons) and safflower oil, a polyunsaturated fat. Medium chain triglycerides are for dietary use in people whose bodies cannot digest certain foods properly. This includes people who are gluten or lactose intolerant, or who have unintended weight loss or need increased calories for other medical reasons. Medium chain triglycerides does not contain protein or carbohydrates. Medium-chain triglycerides are also used as carriers and emollients in the formulation of cosmetics. They are frequently found in topical aerosols, foams, creams, ointments and lotions, and are regularly used in flavorings and fragrances because of their bland taste profiles and low natural odor.

Top Medications with this excipient


[1] Medium Chain Triglycerides. Accessed February 22, 2015 at

[2] Viachem. Medium-Chain Triglycerides (MCT) - Captex. Accessed February 21, 2015 at

Further information

Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.