10 Reasons Apple Cider Vinegar Weight Loss Works
This isn't like some ad in the back of a magazine that makes promises it can't keep. Scientific studies show that apple cider vinegar may have wonderful health properties that can help you slim down. Here's how.
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Apple cider vinegar helps to control blood sugar
There are all sorts of weight loss suggestions around. Apple cider vinegar for weight loss may be one worth trying. Why? An apple cider vinegar weight loss plan affects how blood sugar is regulated, according to a study by Carol Johnston, PhD, at Arizona State University. “Her research provides evidence that drinking vinegar before eating actually led to a decrease in change of blood glucose post meals,” says Tanya Zuckerbrot MS, RD, New York City-based registered dietitian, best-selling author, and founder of the F-Factor Diet. “Drinking apple cider vinegar before a carbohydrate-filled meal can reduce blood sugar spikes that would usually occur after eating.” And that’s not just good for weight loss—it’s good for your overall health, too. Learn some more amazing health benefits of taking apple cider vinegar.
ACV affects how food is digested
Healthy diets often control blood sugar to keep our eating patterns more regular. Researchers theorize that apple cider vinegar for weight loss helps achieve this blood-sugar regulation a few different ways. “Dr. Johnston believes the acetic acid in the vinegar blocks disaccharidases, enzymes that break down starches for digestion, from being absorbed into the bloodstream,” Zuckerbrot says. “If the disaccharides from the carbohydrates we eat cannot be digested then we avoid the rapid increase of our blood sugar level, which is followed by a subsequent drop.” Check out several more ways to lose weight without a lick of exercise.
ACV may make you feel full
Apple cider vinegar may prevent overeating. It can give a feeling of fullness after a meal and keep you from reaching for that evening snack a couple of hours later. “A small Swedish study found when individuals consumed vinegar with a meal, they reported feeling a higher level of satiety after eating than those who did not consume vinegar,” says New Jersey-based registered dietitian Erin Palinski-Wade, RD, CDE, and the author of Belly Fat Diet For Dummies. “Although this study was conducted on only a small number of individuals, it may give insight into how the consumption of vinegar may help to promote a healthy body weight by reducing caloric intake.”
ACV may control appetite
Taking this superfood can stop your junk food cravings for good. “Acetic acid, the main component of vinegar, has been promoted as a natural appetite suppressant,” Zuckerbrot says. “When blood sugar levels are more evenly maintained, cravings for sugar and unhealthy foods are minimized or not experienced.” Some research seems to reinforce this: experts in the UK state that their “observations suggest that acetate has a direct role in central appetite regulation.” There are other ways to shed pounds; consider trying these other healthy weight-loss foods.
ACV affects insulin regulation
You should be eating bread at the end of your meal for the same reason you should start it with apple cider vinegar: to lower insulin levels. “It appears from the results of one small study in the American Diabetes Association journal, Diabetes Care, that consuming vinegar with a carbohydrate-rich meal may improve insulin sensitivity,” Palinski-Wade says. Specifically, it was beneficial for type 2 diabetics or insulin-resistant people who took ACV directly after a meal. She also states that “an improvement in insulin regulation in the body may be beneficial for weight management.”
ACV is helpful for diabetics
You can potentially reverse type 2 diabetes if you drop pounds. An apple cider vinegar weight loss plan can help you shed some pounds. “Apple cider vinegar may be particularly useful for people with diabetes,” Zuckerbrot says. This is because blood glucose control is part of diabetes management, and it can affect insulin sensitivity. But be careful if you’re on meds for your condition. “Since vinegar may reduce blood glucose levels after meals, those taking medications to reduce them, such as insulin, should carefully monitor their readings and response to prevent hypoglycemic episodes,” Palinski-Wade adds. Here are some other detox foods that might work just as well as apple cider vinegar.
ACV may help you lose fat
Can apple cider vinegar melt pounds? Some research suggests it might. Zuckerbrot points to an earlier study that investigated the effects of apple cider vinegar intake on body weight and abdominal fat in 175 obese Japanese subjects. “This was the first study to show that continuous vinegar intake reduces body weight, BMI, and body fat mass,” she says. Zuckerbrot explains that acetic acid may help fat break down.
ACV may improve metabolism
If you want to boost your metabolism, apple cider vinegar may do the trick. “Although this has not been proven in human studies, one animal study from Japan found consuming vinegar may increase the production of an enzyme responsible for fat burning,” Palinski-Wade says. Try ACV and get ready for all of the things that can happen to your body if you take apple cider vinegar every day.
Why ACV is different from other vinegars
Apple cider vinegar weight loss works because of its unique properties. “In comparison to other vinegar, apple cider vinegar has a slightly higher mineral and vitamin content,” Zuckerbrot says. For instance, apples are a main ingredient. She says that this means the liquid retains natural antioxidants, fruit polyphenols, and essential nutrients essential for digestion and metabolism. For example, ACV contains pectin. She says that pectin may boost feelings of fullness. In turn, you may lose weight. You can choose filtered or unfiltered. Unfiltered is often unpasteurized and contains the “mother,” leftover bacteria from the fermentation process. The “mother” may contain potent medicinal properties. Zuckerbrot says to use whichever type you prefer.
How to consume ACV for the most benefits
The benefits of apple cider vinegar go beyond weight loss, making it a healthy addition to any meal. They can even help tummy troubles. “Dilute one to two tablespoons of vinegar into eight ounces of water,” Palinski-Wade suggests. “Or, add it into a marinade, salad dressing, or soup.” Zuckerbrot adds that you can also use it in smoothies, a homemade brine for pickles, or a DIY BBQ sauce. Additionally, she recalls Johnston’s advice to drink apple cider vinegar on an empty stomach before a meal. As a result, this may help reduce insulin and glucose spikes. Just don’t try drinking apple cider vinegar straight. The acid can damage your tooth enamel and throat. Learn more about the things you should never do while taking apple cider vinegar.
Don’t use ACV as an excuse
As with all weight-loss tips, you can’t rely solely on one thing to make the pounds drop. “Apple cider vinegar is not a magic eraser,” says Zuckerbrot. “While it can certainly aid in weight loss, it does not actually cause weight loss.” Learn the truth about some more myths about apple cider vinegar you need to stop believing.
- Tanya Zuckerbrot MS, RD, registered dietitian, New York City.
- Erin Palinski-Wade, RD, CDE, registered dietician, New York City.
- Annals of Nutrition and Metabolism: "Examination of the antiglycemic properties of vinegar in healthy adults."
- European Journal of Clinical Nutrition: "Vinegar supplementation lowers glucose and insulin responses and increases satiety after a bread meal in healthy subjects."
- Nature Communications: "The short-chain fatty acid acetate reduces appetite via a central homeostatic mechanism."
- Diabetes CareVinegar Improves Insulin Sensitivity to a High-Carbohydrate Meal in Subjects With Insulin Resistance or Type 2 Diabetes."
- Biochemical and Biophysical Research Communications: "Acetic acid activates hepatic AMPK and reduces hyperglycemia in diabetic KK-A(y) mice."