Caprylic acid


Caprylic acid is an eight-carbon fatty acid naturally found in palm and coconut oil, and in the milk of humans and bovines (cows). Caprylic acid is classified as a medium-chain fatty acid and chemically known as octanoic acid. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved caprylic acid with generally recognizable as safe (GRAS) status. It is used as parenteral nutrition in patients who require nutrition supplementation, as well as in some drugs, foods, and cosmetics.
Nutritionists often recommend caprylic acid for use in treating candidiasis (yeast infection) and bacterial infections. However, there is insufficient clinical data available to support the used of caprylic acid for any claimed therapeutic uses.

Related Terms

Alpha-hydroxy caprylic acid, medium-chain fatty acid, medium chain triglyceride (MCT), monocaprylin, octanoic acid, suberic acid.

evidence table

These uses have been tested in humans or animals. Safety and effectiveness have not always been proven. Some of these conditions are potentially serious, and should be evaluated by a qualified healthcare provider.
Epilepsy (children) (Grade: C)
Some forms of epilepsy respond to diets that are high in fat and low in carbohydrates. Currently, the effects of caprylic acid alone to treat epilepsy in children are not well studied. Additional study is needed in this area.