Is apple cider vinegar the secret to weight loss?
You might see apple cider vinegar touted as a way to achieve quick weight loss, but is it too good to be true? Let’s find out.
What’s apple cider vinegar?
Apple cider vinegar is a type of vinegar made from apples. It’s made by adding yeast to apple juice in a process known as fermenting. There are two types of apple cider vinegar - filtered and what’s commonly known as apple cider vinegar ‘with the mother’. Apple cider vinegar with the mother is unfiltered, meaning it keeps the bacteria, enzymes and proteins from the fermenting process, giving it a cloudy appearance.
How is apple cider vinegar used?
Apple cider vinegar is widely used as part of recipes for salad dressings, marinades and dips. Some people also recommend drinking 1-2 tablespoons a day mixed with water for its supposed health benefits.
What are the benefits of apple cider vinegar?
Lovers of apple cider vinegar believe it has a lot of health benefits, including helping to lower blood sugar levels, reducing cholesterol and improving eczema. But if you’ve ever heard about apple cider vinegar, chances are it’s down to its reputation for being good for weight loss.
Will apple cider vinegar help me lose weight?
There’s no strong scientific support for the claim that apple cider vinegar helps you lose weight. So far, there have been few studies on the effects of apple cider vinegar in humans, and the studies that do exist have very small sample sizes, meaning it’s hard to apply any results to the wider population.
Initial studies do indicate that apple cider vinegar might help improve weight loss very slightly when used alongside a strict calorie-restricted diet, but much more research is needed. It’s likely that the calorie-restricted diet is the cause of weight loss in these studies, not the vinegar.
If you like the acidic tang that apple cider vinegar gives recipes, then by all means continue to use it in cooking, but know that it’s not a miracle weight loss aid.
Are there any drawbacks to consuming apple cider vinegar?
It’s not suitable for everyone, including those with gastroparesis (where food passes through the stomach slower than usual) and histamine intolerance. Apple cider vinegar may also interact with certain medications, including insulin and diuretics, so always check with your GP before you try it.
Drinking a lot of apple cider vinegar isn’t recommended as it can lead to erosion of tooth enamel due to how acidic it is. You also shouldn’t drink it undiluted as it can irritate your throat and stomach.
The take home message
Apple cider vinegar is believed to be the secret to weight loss for some, however, there is no strong evidence that this is the case. If you enjoy the taste of apple cider vinegar, then do continue to use it in your cooking, but consuming spoonful’s in the hope that it will help you lose weight is unhelpful, and may cause health issues for certain people. Rather than at looking at one single ingredient to help lose weight, look at your overall dietary intake and aim to improve the quality of your diet.