Have you ever heard about the magic of apple cider vinegar (ACV)? It’s often touted as a natural and effective weight loss supplement. Sadly, there’s no concrete evidence that ACV really helps you lose weight. In fact, it’s not unusual for people to gain weight while on a diet containing ACV. In this article, we’ll explore the facts about ACV and whether it’s really a weight loss wonder drug.
What is Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)?
ACV is an organic compound with a sour flavor that’s derived from apples. The juice of the fruit is said to be one of the healthiest sources of nutrients available (vitamins A, C and flavonoids). As a result of its high nutrient content, ACV is used both as a condiment and a cooking ingredient. It has several applications, including preserving food and reducing inflammation.
According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), ACV can reduce obesity-related diseases. Specifically, the agency states that individuals who consume ACV in excess of 3–4 cups per day may reduce their risk of type 2 diabetes by 23% and heart disease by 27%. Furthermore, the NIH suggests that people who consume ACV may reduce their total cholesterol by 10% and LDL (bad) cholesterol by 15%. Not surprisingly, the agency adds that although there’s no concrete evidence to prove it, ACV may also help reduce arthritis and Alzheimer’s disease as well.
Is Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) An Effective Weight Loss Supplement?
The NIH lists several purported benefits of ACV. However, before you rush out to buy groceries, there’s a good chance you’ll never feel, look, or act like a superhero after taking the suggested dosage. Keep reading.
In a nutshell, ACV may help you lose weight by reducing absorption of nutrients from food. To be specific, the drink may prevent certain vitamins and minerals from being used as cellular material by the body’s cells. As a result, these nutrients are less available for storage and future use. This could explain why most people who try ACV as a weight loss pill end up gaining weight instead of losing it.
How Effective is It?
According to animal studies, ACV helps reduce weight gain due to a high-fat diet. In one study, rats that were given a high-fat diet and then treated with ACV demonstrated a significant decrease in body weight compared to those that weren’t given the supplement. This suggests that the rats that consumed apple cider vinegar as part of their diet had lower amounts of fat stored in their bodies and were able to use those nutrients for energy rather than storage.
There’s also evidence that ACV suppresses food intake. Scientists at the University of California at San Francisco (UCSF) found that rats that were treated with ACV had lower levels of the hormone ghrelin in comparison to those that were not given the supplement. Ghrelin is mainly produced by the stomach in response to a high-fat diet. The findings suggest that the rats might have been feeling fuller which could explain why taking ACV with a high-fat diet might assist in weight loss.
Risks Associated With Taking Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV)
Although there are several health benefits to taking ACV, there are risks associated with this supplement as well. One major risk is that it may mask the symptoms of nutrient deficiencies. Another risk is that consuming too much ACV can cause stomach aches, nausea, and even heartburn. These side effects are more prevalent among people with sensitive stomachs. If you have severe symptoms of any kind you should consult with a physician before taking additional ACV.
Should You Try Alternative Weight Loss Methods?
If you’re looking for an effective and safe way to lose weight, you might want to try alternative methods. Fortunately, there are several options available including diet pills, surgical procedures, and exercise. If you’re interested in trying an herbal supplement, you can’t go wrong with ACV. However, if you want to avoid the health risks associated with this natural product, it’s best to consult with a physician first and try other options.