Does Apple Cider Vinegar Help With Weight Loss?

Apple cider vinegar or “ACV,” as it’s called among enthusiasts—is having its superfood moment. Made from fermented apple sugars, ACV’s rumored perks range from helping with type-2 diabetes to whitening teeth.

But can it help you lose weight?

In short, no. Apple cider vinegar should not be considered a weight-loss aid. The studies that have been done are small and not well-designed. Something called “delayed gastric emptying” is the best argument among the theories circulating about apple cider vinegar’s weight-loss power; the idea is that apple cider vinegar assists in this process, so you’ll feel more satiated. Still, the research that’s been done on apple cider vinegar so far isn’t compelling enough to be a reason to consume it just to help you drop pounds.

There are three things you should remember if you are trying to lose weight or improve health with apple cider vinegar.

  1. People swear by ACV claiming it helps you lose weight, detox your liver, helps with diabetes prevention, digestive help, and even gives you higher energy levels. But there is no evidence based research to backup such claims. Some studies do support improved health without medical evidence.
  2. Drinking too much ACV can cause heart arrhythmia, dangerously low potassium levels, and throat irritation. It can also react negatively to certain medication.
  3. Taking small doses of ACV will not hurt you. If you chose to use it , I recommend one tablespoon into a large glass of water once a day.

When it comes to weight loss and health, there is no magic elixir or replacement for a balanced diet and exercise.

Claims of “Drink this, lose weight!” generally sound too good to be true for a reason. One recent study of 14 people showed that those who drank a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar mixed with 8 ounces of water before a meal had lower blood glucose levels. This may be because vinegar interfered with the body’s digestion of starch. By blocking digestion of starch, that would result in a calorie reduction of your meal. So that’s possibly where [those weight claims] came from.

In other words, don’t bank on apple cider vinegar when healthy eating and good old-fashioned exercise will do. If you’re set on incorporating apple cider vinegar in your diet, do it in moderation. You never want to take it just straight. Even better: Mix it with olive oil and use it to top your salads as a low-calorie alternative to your usual ranch dressing.

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