In the intestine , following the secretion of lipases and bile , triglycerides are split into monoacylglycerol and free fatty acids in a process called lipolysis . They are subsequently moved to absorptive enterocyte cells lining the intestines. The triglycerides are rebuilt in the enterocytes from their fragments and packaged together with cholesterol and proteins to form chylomicrons . These are excreted from the cells and collected by the lymph system and transported to the large vessels near the heart before being mixed into the blood. Various tissues can capture the chylomicrons, releasing the triglycerides to be used as a source of energy. Liver cells can synthesize and store triglycerides. When the body requires fatty acids as an energy source, the hormone glucagon signals the breakdown of the triglycerides by hormone-sensitive lipase to release free fatty acids. As the brain cannot utilize fatty acids as an energy source (unless converted to a ketone ), [ citation needed ] the glycerol component of triglycerides can be converted into glucose , via gluconeogenesis by conversion into dihydroxyacetone phosphate and then into glyceraldehyde 3-phosphate , for brain fuel when it is broken down. Fat cells may also be broken down for that reason, if the brain's needs ever outweigh the body's.