Why Drink Butter Coffee? The Science of Bulletproof Coffee
Articles Blog

Why Drink Butter Coffee? The Science of Bulletproof Coffee


Thanks to Skillshare for sponsoring this video.
“Butter tea, it was never my cup of tea.” Perhaps Austrian Mountaineer Heinrich Harrer
would have liked butter coffee better than the Tibetan Yak Butter tea. Recently, blending
some mixture of fat in your coffee and having that for breakfast has gotten quite popular.
The main version, “Bulletproof coffee” is made by mixing Coffee, Grass Fed Butter
and pure C8 MCT Oil in a blender. This recipe comes from entrepreneur Dave Asprey, who apparently
got the idea after having Yak Butter Tea in Tibet in 2004. Proponents of Bulletproof coffee claim that
the coffee will keep you focused and curb your appetite for hours. While coffee with
a gob of fat may sound like a newfangled trend, the practice of ingesting coffee with fat
was around even before people drank coffee as a beverage. Sometime between 575 and 850
CE, nomadic mountain warriors of the Galla tribe in Ethiopia would combine crushed coffee
beans with animal fat, and snack on that for energy during long treks and warfare. “Excuse me, can I have a butter bar please?” Personally, I can attest to the sustained
energy that comes from ButterProof coffee, but what could be making it so magical? And
should you be replacing your breakfast with it? Before we get into it, it’s necessary to
understand that saturated fat in general is not the enemy that it’s been made out to
be. You also have to know a little bit about ketosis because this is one of the goals of
the coffee. Very briefly, ketosis occurs when you restrict carbohydrate intake enough and
for long enough. When you’ve burned out enough of your carbohydrate stores, your liver
then turns fatty acids from your diet, and from your body fat into ketones. These ketones
are used for energy in the body and brain rather than relying on glucose or carbohydrate. Ketosis has many benefits, physical and mental.
It helps you lose weight and reduces hunger. There’s also evidence that it improves longevity
and healthspan, it suppresses oxidative stress, and it improves cognition and memory. So by doing intermittent fasting or being
on a low carb and high fat diet, your body gets energy primarily from fat rather than
carbohydrate. This allows you to get through the day without blood sugar spikes and crashes,
and you’ll have more stable energy, feel more focused and less hungry. Obviously butter
coffee plays into this because it’s just fat and zero carbs. But there are some other fascinating properties
of butter coffee that help get you into ketosis. First, the caffeine in the coffee actually
helps to boost ketone production, even if you’re not doing a low carb diet. This study from last year in the Canadian
Journal of Physiology and Pharmacology had people fast for 12 hours, then have breakfast.
One group had no caffeine, another had 1 and ½ cups of black coffee, and another had caffeine
pills that were the equivalent of 3 cups of coffee. They found that “Caffeine given
at breakfast significantly stimulated ketone production in a dose-dependent manner.”
So, the more caffeine, the more ketones. This is interesting, because insulin which
is produced in response to eating carbohydrates hinders ketone production, but the subjects’
breakfast was 78% carbohydrate. Though, that doesn’t mean you should drink butter coffee
no matter what your diet is. We can expect that ketone production would have been even
higher if they had the caffeine without carbohydrate. It’s important to drink this with a ketogenic
breakfast, or better yet, with no breakfast at all. If you’re mixing up some grass fed
butter and MCT oil in your coffee and then you have a cream cheese bagel, or bowl of
cereal along with it, you’ll blunt the ketogenic effects of the coffee and store a lot of that
fat on your body. You see, there are two ways you can fill up
fat cells: One is by eating enough carbohydrates to where carbohydrates are stored in the body
as fat through a process called de novo lipogenesis; the other is through a process called re-esterification.
Simply put: re esterification is the process of taking fatty acids and forming them back
into fat, which is then stored in your fat cells. Then, the way you get the fat out of
your fat cells is by breaking down the fat through another process: lipolysis. So, let’s say you’re on a ketogenic diet
and you decide to whir up a bunch of fat in your coffee, and drink it for breakfast while
you read Garfield comics from 1995. Fat’s going to be coming in, but because
the main feature of ketosis is that you use fat for energy, lipolysis is going to be way
up and you’re going to be using the fat from your fat cells and the fat from your
coffee for energy. So that’s not too bad. But if you’re having toast, eggs and potatoes
with your butter coffee, then you’re gonna have some of the carbs stored as fat through
de novo lipogenesis, and actually even more re-esterification will occur and the fat output,
lipolysis, will be low. When you fat with carbs, even more of that
fat goes into your fat cells and you burn less fat because insulin, which is secreted
when you eat carbohydrate, increases re-esterification and inhibits lipolysis. One of the benefits
of bulletproof coffee is that it’s supposed to help you lose weight, but it might do the
opposite if you put sugar in it or have it with carbohydrates. I didn’t realize how big this Butter and
MCT oil coffee trend was getting until I saw that a pre-made version of it hit the shelves
of a convenient store chain here in Tokyo. Unfortunately, the coffee they use is so weak
the drink just tastes like skim milk but… I was impressed that they got the ingredients
right – it’s not just coffee with butter, it actually has grass fed butter and MCT oil
in it. So what’s the deal with the MCT Oil?
MCT stands for medium chain triglycerides, and, compared to long-chain triglycerides,
MCT’s are: -Absorbed quicker and turned into energy more
efficiently -Result in less body fat gain
-They make you feel fuller faster -And, they enhance the production of ketones. So here we have another ingredient that promotes
ketones. There’s a couple different types of MCT’s – c12, c10, c8 and c6 which refers
to the length of the chain. The shorter the chain, the easier it turns into ketones. C6
isn’t usually used because it easily upsets the stomach and apparently smells like goats
– So, pure C8 – caprylic acid, is your best bet for maximum ketone production, but a mix
of C8 and C10 is usually more available and more cost effective. So why the grass-fed butter? Well, Butter
provides great fat soluble Vitamins like Vitamin K2 and Vitamin A and Vitamin E. And studies
suggest grassfed butter has better Vitamin A and E content, higher omega-3’s and higher
levels of the antioxidant glutathione. Though, this is just a nice little bonus- I wouldn’t
say BulletProof coffee is packed with vitamins. So the big point of this fatty coffee is to
boost your ketone production so you can get the benefits of ketosis even when you’re
not super strict on intermittent fasting or eating really low carb. But is it healthy having this every morning? I would say “healthier than what?” If
having this coffee is getting you to keep your blood sugar down and insulin levels low
thanks to it replacing your high carb breakfast, I would say yes, it’s healthier. I’d consider Grass fed butter and MCT oil
a healthy addition to your daily diet for reasons I just discussed, so the question
becomes: is daily coffee consumption healthy? There’s a ton of research on coffee showing
that more coffee consumption increases longevity, reduces diabetes risk and heart disease risk.
Recently, coffee and even decaf coffee have been shown to promote an anti-aging process
called autophagy. But coffee is a very complex beverage that affects all kinds of hormones
and neurotransmitters like Adenosine, Dopamine, Cortisol, Adrenaline, Cholecystokinin and
Gastrin. Coffee has also been shown to produce inflammation. Personally I love butter coffee
and feel great for a couple hours after I drink it, but I feel more calm and content
in general when I don’t have a coffee habit. Recently, I’ve slowly cut my morning coffee
consumption in half over a couple weeks. I get less of a spike in focus, but I’m calmer
and more focused in general throughout the day. Then again, that’s just me. There’s a lot more to say about coffee,
but that’s a great topic for another time. There is one more thing I should mention about
coffee. This June 2012 paper, authored in part by Ryan N. Coffee actually has nothing
to do with coffee, but if coffee is something you like to indulge in on a daily basis, you
might want to know how to make a really good cup. That’s where this video’s sponsor,
Skillshare comes in. Skillshare is an online community with more than 17,000 classes in
Design, Marketing, Business, Technology and yes there’s even a class on Coffee by 2010
world Barista Champion Michael Phillips. It’s an hour long class that gives you the low
down on sourcing, tasting and brewing the magical bean elixir. The classes on Skillshare
are professional, organized and have very clear and actionable points. An annual premium
membership is less than just $10 a month and it gives you unlimited access to quality classes
from experts working in their field. Skillshare’s huge variety of courses has also led me to
topics I didn’t even know I would be interested in like these logo and typefacing classes
by the famous a charismatic designer Aaron Draplin. If that’s not your thing, there’s
plenty more people to learn from. The first 500 people to click my link in the description
can get 2 months of Skillshare Premium for free. After that, it’s as low as $10 a month
to keep on learning with Skillshare.

100 thoughts on “Why Drink Butter Coffee? The Science of Bulletproof Coffee

  1. So there's such a thing called Yak Butter coffee. I first heard it
    mentioned on Hallmark movie called the Groom's Sisters.
    It was developed by the Tibetans to keep them hydrated.

  2. I will use my favourite Jersey cows full cream milk. Is it better to use a filter coffee or is the instant freeze dried ok ?

  3. Uh, you don't need 3 different sources of
    'MCT' to make BP Coffee: Butter is MCT. Coconut oil is MCT. And of course 'MCT oil (wherever they get that from)' is MCT. You could use plain-ol' yak-butter, and by that I don't mean throwing-up, making butter out of it, and putting it in your coffee. I also don't recommend using sleepy-weepy-dog-eye-butter for said purpose.

  4. omg dude. REALLY?!?

    So I was just about to make the skeptical comment that any one of those pro coffee studies could have been funded by Folger's.
    Insinuating CORRUPTION and MOTIVE.

    When you literally said, "vid sponsor…SKILLSHARE…2010 world barista champion Michael Phillips…hour long class on…the magical bean elixir…"

    At least you know how it works.

  5. Your videos are so darn interesting because you explain the science or reasons behind it. Thank you so much for expanding my thoughts!

  6. Can people stop saying that keto is the only way to loose weight, it's a great way but it's not the only way

  7. Does heavy cream with no added sugar have the same effect? its almost pure fat. Not half and half. Heavy whipping cream

    I don't have a blender

  8. This channel is perfect for med students newbies 😀 thanks dude, makes biochemistry interesting again! Acetil CoA ftw!

  9. If we are doin IF and we want to fast for 16hours or longer,won’t the morning bullefproof coffee break the fast?

  10. 1. Bullet proof coffee. 2. Run for one hour (with improved endurance). 3. Eat a BIG breakfast. I feel ready for anything after that, even a cold shower.

  11. 3:30. I just had a cream cheese bagel with bulletproof coffee! Cool! (I was just trying it to taste it. Not for dietary purposes.)

  12. The question isn’t if having a cup of coffee a day healthy. The actual question: is having butter with each cup of coffee healthy.

    Please be careful not to act on every clown that sounds like they know what they’re talking about. You can seriously hurt yourself if you listen to the advice in this video

  13. Remember the wack-jobs that drank their own urine? Wonder if their pissn in their coffee to remind them of their office coffee that guys like me use to piss in…

  14. butter is made from turned heavy cream. cream and butter are one in the same. ice cream and whipped cream is also made from heavy cream. if you have heavy cream just put in a glass mason jar and shake it. half way is whipped cream just add sugar. then if you dont add sugar and keep shaking it.till solid all the way and its butter. some butter adds salt to taste. ice cream is made by putting heavy cream sugar and a flavoring (eg vanilla or chocolate)in a metal bowl suspended in another bowl with ice and rock salt and water. just mix till it freezes. simple.

  15. What are the effects of adding sweeteners to buttered coffee? and would there be a big difference between adding a sweetener based off of saccharine and Splenda?

  16. I also saw a bulletproof coffee made with grass fed butter and "coconut cream."  Coconut cream is the top fatty portion of coconut milk, and is sold separately from coconut milk in small cans that are about the size can in which tomato paste is sold, and labeled simply "coconut cream."

  17. Fasting makes me feel dizzy. Sometimes I get a white out in front of my eyes where colour drains from the world and I end up putting my hands on my knees so I won't fall over. I've done without food repeatedly in my life. Today I've drunk water but eaten nothing. Yesterday I ate one meal. I went for a swim today. About 1 kilometer. It was harder walking home afterwards. Some mad little dog was snarling at me from the end of a leash attached to a mad fat woman …it's owner. I know she's mad because one of her relatives told me. I hate vicious dogs and their owners. I'd happily murder them all.

  18. I sm surprised to be hearing about coffee and butter
    Cause it is something we grew up having every morning
    My dad would not get out of bed without it
    The tradition had died
    But we drank it for a lot of common ails
    At the time we used a butter called oleo orange in color
    Don't think its produced anymore
    Happy to hear we are not alone!

  19. Dave Asprey DID NOT come up with butter coffee. People were on the internet making butter coffee for years. Dave just gave it a name and marketed it.

  20. Can someone tell me why not use heavy cream rather than butter. Butter is made (churned) from heavy cream and already in a liquid form. Why butter?

  21. Like all filtered coffee, butter coffee taste like crap. Drink REAL (pressurized extraction) coffee with steamed full cream milk.

  22. Hey man, you can't convince me to go low carb and skip breakfast and then fill every video about carbs with that pancake B-roll footage. You're actually torturing me.

  23. Would drinking coffee with evaporated milk ( which has high fat content, but minimal sat fat) have the same effect?

  24. I am drinking heavily modified bulletproof coffee every morning
    (30g organic raw cold pressed coconut oil, 30g organic cacao butter, 30 grass feed butter and 3 egg yolks)
    This rises my ketones level to between 4 and 7 mmol/l
    I checked this and rechecked this
    Even if I would have 1.5mmol/l when I wake up, I would get to at least 4mmol/l
    Today I had 1.5 before coffee, over 6 after coffee, before next meal (which was 6 hours later, as I have had no time today earlier)
    My bulletproof coffee is out bulletproof. Nothing can stop it, not alcohol, not fruits, not eating late even fruit, nothing.

  25. unless you can tell us your medical stats, stop giving medical/diet advice. Keto is for fat people needing to lose weight, but how did they get fat? Keto is NOT for thin people, because they don't have body fat to spare. Losing weight slowly by eating a healthy, manageable diet is safer…a diet that you can follow for the rest of our (thin) life. fasting for 4+ days maybe every 6 months triggers keto and is healthy. Thin people probably shouldn't go past 4 days, though.

  26. ANATA WA TOTEMO BAKA, DESU!!!! Black coffee contains large amounts of NAICIN which affects your NAD+ levels. Also, natto provides the best source of vitamin K and only a table spoon every 2 or 3 days feeds the bacteria in your gut. Autophagy is triggered by a low calorie diet. Anata wa debu, desu-ka?! Urusai

  27. The anti-fat champagne of the last 30-40 years was literally a genocide against people and smb should be taken responsible criminally for it.

  28. Hitler used to like to eat about 25 to 30 onions a day. He kept a peach basket by his desk at all times full of onions. It is well documented that he did this.

  29. Bulletproof coffee works. It’s anti-inflammatory. It also dries you out which means, like alcohol, the more you drink the more you want. That’s the $ secret behind both caffeine & alcohol. It has ppl coming & going. I stopped asthma sprays after a couple of months on BP coffee. I retain it & yet I always want more. That varies from person to person. BP coffee is a meal substitute. It makes you lose weight but it’s also an extreme drink attracting other extremes.

  30. I'm on day 18 Keto I've lost 7 pounds and 4 inches off my chest and belly. It works plus I feel great and will live longer.

  31. Would bulletproof coffee in the morning be helpful for someone who does IF but not keto diet? I want to try having it in the morning (by itself) and then eat my normal meals (with carbs and all) later in the day when I break my fast.

  32. I have gotten rid of my coffee consumption altogether and, as you also said, I'm calmer. I'm so calm that I wouldn't exchange it for any other thing.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back To Top