According to doctors, the body weight of a person must be in proportion to his/ her height, and anything above the prescribed limit is termed as obesity. It is a condition when there is an excess of fat deposition in the body (1). If a person consumes food in larger quantity than required by his body, then it results in obesity. Apart from overeating, other causes include inactive and sedentary lifestyle, certain medications, consumption of alcohol in large quantities, etc. It is one of the most common diseases that are found in people of almost every age group. The point of concern is that, not only the disease is life threatening but, it also contributes to other major health problems like blood pressure, stone in the gallbladder, may lead to some type of cancer also. Although there are many ways by which you can control obesity such as exercises, medications, controlling diet, numerous home remedies, you can simply treat it with a wonderful ingredient known as apple cider vinegar. This widely available ingredient helps reduce weight without causing any side effect.
Is Apple Cider Vinegar Really Helpful?
Apple cider vinegar is a rich source of vitamins, potash, minerals, and several useful acids like amino and acetic acid. It helps absorb iron from food and also discourages water retention in the body. Therefore, apple cider vinegar is really effective for weight loss but, it is not a quick fix. Rather, it will help you lose weight gradually. People who are looking for losing weight fast, ACV is not for them. Consumption of ACV in excess is also not advisable, as it may damage your teeth (2).
Organic Apple Cider Vinegar or Non-Organic
Organic apple cider vinegar is the one that is unheated, unfiltered, and unpasteurized. It has a cloudy appearance. On the other hand, non-organic vinegar is clear and has no visible particles. An organic variant is made from the apples that have been grown without chemical fertilizers. Therefore, it is more nutritious, and there are more benefits of organic vinegar than non-organic.
Useful Properties of Apple Cider Vinegar
Now, it is known that ACV reduces body fat and is one of the best ways to shed pounds. But, what are the properties that encourage weight loss? One of the very common reasons is that it is acidic in nature which helps with the digestion of protein. Besides this, there are numerous properties that are present in this ingredient, these are:
1. Prevents Fat Accumulation
Consumption of ACV improves metabolism and helps burn calories faster. Therefore, there is less accumulation of fat in the body. It also maintains the good cholesterol level in the body and helps get rid of unnecessary (or bad) cholesterol.
2. Controls Diabetes
Not everyone is aware of the fact that insulin level and blood sugar levels also affects the fat accumulation in the body. Excess insulin secretion can also cause obesity and is also associated with type 2 diabetes. Hyperinsulinemia is one of the common syndromes associated with obesity (3). Therefore, it is essential to maintain a balanced level. If you have high blood sugar level then taking a meal with acetic acid reduces the level of glucose in our body(4) and, therefore, keeps a check on your sugar levels.
Note: There are fewer evidences of maintaining a balanced level of sugar. If you have low sugar levels, consult a doctor before incorporating ACV in your diet.
3. Works as a Detox
When there are no harmful bacteria and viruses in our body, the process of digestion becomes smooth. ACV improves the bowel movement by absorbing toxins and flushing out harmful components from the body.
4. Suppress Appetite
It is one of the best-known hunger suppressants. If you eat less then automatically there is less storage of fat. Since ACV is enriched in beta-carotene (an antioxidant), it breaks down fat faster.
How to Use ACV for Weight Loss
Not everybody can drink raw or undiluted ACV. There are certain recipes for weight loss, which you can incorporate into your daily regime. Here we have summarized the list of best weight loss recipes (using ACV) that you can try.
1. Cinnamon, Lemon, and ACV Mix
You can prepare numerous detox drink using ACV for various purposes including weight loss. For this detox drink, you will need 2 glasses of water, 1 tsp cinnamon (ground), 1 pinch of cayenne pepper, and 4 tbsp each of honey, lemon juice, and apple cider vinegar. Prepare a tea by mixing all the ingredient in hot water (add vinegar at last) and have it. You can also store it in a refrigerator, and use it as a cold beverage.
- Alternatively, you can add 2-3 tbsp of ACV and 1 tsp of cinnamon powder to 8-10 oz of water and drink it up to 3 times a day.
2. ACV and Honey
For this weight loss recipe, you will need a glass of water, 2 tsp honey, and 2-3 tsp of ACV. Mix all the ingredients in a bottle and shake properly. Drink it every day until you notice satisfactory results.
- Or, you can also prepare a tea by mixing equal parts of ACV and honey in a cup of hot water. Drink it twice a day on an empty stomach to shed those extra kilos.
3. ACV and Water
This recipe is the simplest of all the methods, and it works wonders for reducing weight. Add 2 tbsp of raw honey to 16 oz of water. Consume it before each and every meal (approximately before half an hour).
4. ACV and Juices
Juices are not only tasty but are healthy too. You can prepare your weight loss drink by mixing ACV to them. For this, you will need 8 ounces of warm water, 8 oz. of vegetable or fruit juice (of your choice), and 2 tbsp of apple cider vinegar. Mix the ingredients thoroughly and drink it two times a day regularly.
5. Salad and ACV
Adding ACV to your salad will not only enhance the taste but will make you lose pounds as well. Take veggies of your choice like spring onions, tomatoes, cucumbers, etc.; 50 ml of water; 50 ml of ACV; ¼ tsp salt (optional); ¼ tsp black pepper powder (optional). First of all mix water and ACV in a bowl. Chop all the veggies and add them to the bowl. Add seasoning if required and have it whenever you like.
- Alternatively, mix honey and ACV as a dressing in your salad.
6. ACV and Green Tea
Green tea is already known for several benefits, and many studies have shown that it is also effective in reducing weight. For your very own drink with ACV, firstly, prepare fresh green tea and add 2 tsp of honey and 1 tsp of ACV to it. Drink it up to six times a day.
7. ACV and Chamomile Tea
This is yet another effective drink for losing weight. For this, you will need 3 tsp of ACV, 2 tsp of honey and a cup of freshly prepared chamomile tea. Mix all of them together and drink it every day until you notice satisfactory results. You can also add a pinch of cinnamon powder for extra flavor.
8. Maple Syrup and ACV
Maple syrup is a 100% natural sweetener and is healthier than sugar. It also has lots of antioxidants. Therefore, it neutralizes free radicals. Mix 1 tbsp of ACV and maple syrup in a glass of warm water or any favorite tea and drink it up to 3 times a day to reduce weight.
9. Apple Cider Vinegar and Garlic Juice
In a bowl, combine 2 tsp of honey, 2 tsp of ACV, a few drops of garlic juice, juice of a ¼ lemon and a pinch or two of cayenne pepper. Add the prepared mixture to a glass of water and drink it regularly to reduce food cravings and fat.
Due to the terrible taste of apple cider vinegar, nowadays, some brands have started manufacturing ACV pills. There are a number of people who have started consuming these pills. Though the pills contain the same nutrient as liquid vinegar, the quantity of calcium, iron, acetic acid and other compounds may be different in different brands.
1) The tablets may have some drawbacks and may not be as effective as liquid vinegar.
2) A study has also shown that the consumption of these supplements resulted into esophageal injuries (5). Therefore, must be taken carefully.
Though apple cider vinegar has lots of benefits and is a panacea for losing weight, it does not mean that there is no risk associated with the ingredient. It must be administered with proper care to minimize the side effects.
- Too much intake of ACV can cause Hypokalemia (6).
- Do not consume ACV pills without consulting a doctor.
- The pills must have a higher percentage of ACV and must contain “mother of vinegar” in it.
- Always use organic version as it is unfiltered, not treated chemically and is safer.
- People suffering from acid reflux must consume ACV after consulting a doctor.
- People suffering from type 1 diabetes may have reduced the gastric emptying rate, which may be a disadvantage for them (7).
- ACV may cause upset stomach, nausea, heartburn, etc.
- Pregnant women must consume this after proper consultation as there is not enough evidence about the safety of ACV for them.