Apple cider vinegar is prepared by the fermentation of apple juice. It is a natural remedy for a variety of health issues and has been resorted to for years. It has a lot to offer when it comes to weight loss- helps break down the complex fats and carbohydrates; reduces blood sugar level and cholesterol; reduces the food cravings; aids in digestion and body detox.
It is a low-calorie natural supplement with various nutrients and active ingredients- minerals, vitamins, soluble fibers, antioxidants and natural acids and enzymes- that helps to deal with obesity. It is prudent to know that apple cider vinegar in its concentrated (undiluted) form is a strong acid that should never be consumed raw. Our esophagus tube (food pipe) is not equipped to handle the same and can get severely damaged. Hence, it makes sense to dilute it with water so that the intensity comes down. Also, it is important to monitor the dosage regularly. Start with 5-10 ml per day and gradually increase it up to 30 ml (2 tablespoons) per day. Going beyond 30 ml is generally not recommended.
Let us discuss how Apple Cider Vinegar will help you to lose some weight and change your life for good:
• Helps to reduce Cholesterol level
Bile is a viscous yellowish liquid produced by the liver that helps to break down the dietary fats and to dispose off the leftover cholesterol and other toxins from the liver. Poor bile production hampers the liver activity which may result in accumulation of fats and cholesterol to cause obesity. Consuming one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar early in the morning kick-starts the bile production to promote fat breakdown and cholesterol decomposition.
• Lowers the blood sugar level
A spike in the blood sugar level increases the cravings for snacks and unhealthy processed foods which is a big turn off if you are trying to shed a few pounds. According to a study published in the Journal of Functional Foods, apple cider vinegar helps to lower the blood sugar level. The participants who drank 8 ounces of water (mixed with vinegar) prior to the meals recorded low levels of blood sugar than those who didn’t.
• Aids in blocking Carbohydrates (starch)
Gone are the days, when it was believed that carbohydrates are bad for health. The new age of dieticians recommends consumption of carbohydrates on a regular basis to ensure a balanced diet.
The starch contained in carbohydrates has a tendency to quickly convert into glucose and stimulate the release of insulin in the body. The insulin triggers the storage of glucose in the form of fat. Hence, eating starchy food pushes your body into the fat storage mode.
How is apple cider vinegar going to help here?
The acetic acid content in the vinegar interferes with the body’s ability to digest starch. It helps to reduce the storage of glucose in the form of fat. Over a period of time, this starch blockage activity would definitely have an effect on the body weight.
• Promotes a healthy digestive system
Your gut contains trillions of probiotics (healthy bacteria) that helps to break-down the complex food particles; combat the growth of disease causing microbes and regulates the immune system. Apple cider vinegar acts as a catalyst for these probiotics. The probiotics feed on the pectins contained in apple cider vinegar for growth and development. Hence, apple cider vinegar helps to maintain an optimum gut flora for smooth digestion and body metabolism.
• Suppresses the appetite
Apple cider vinegar contains pectins- a type of soluble fibers which provides a feeling of fullness to suppress the appetite for all the good reasons.
• It acts as a mild laxative and diuretic in nature
Apple cider vinegar acts as a mild laxative to accelerate the elimination process and ensure regular bowel movements. Also, it has a diuretic effect to release the excess stored water from the body.
• Promote body detox
Body detoxification refers to the thorough cleansing of the body to get rid of accumulated body wastes- undigested food, cholesterol, saturated fats and disease causing microbes. Due to unhealthy diet and poor lifestyle habits, the body metabolism gets slow down and piling up of body toxins starts. The combined effect of the sluggish body metabolism and accumulated body toxins would result in obesity. Apple cider vinegar is a detoxifying elixir- natural and safe. It promotes digestion, speed up the body metabolism, relieves constipation and excretes excess water from your body to detoxify your body from inside.
How to Consume Apple Cider Vinegar
Add 1-2 teaspoon (5-10 ml) of raw apple cider vinegar in one glass (250 ml) of water, stir well and drink it before the meals. If it causes temporary heartburn or irritation, simply dilute it with more water. You may mix it with your juice or other beverages as well. Some people prefer to sprinkle over the salads and other food preparations as per their taste.
The maximum, optimum dosage per day is 30 ml.
Precautionary measures and possible side effects
In general, apple cider vinegar is a natural, safe drink for people of all ages. Do consider below safety measures to get the best benefits:
• Avoid drinking it as the first thing in the morning- empty stomach- as it may irritate the gut lining and cause burning sensation.
• Dilute it enough- one teaspoon in one glass of water seems a good ratio.
• Due to acid content, over consumption of apple cider vinegar can damage the esophagus tube and tissues. Also, it can cause hypokalemia- a condition when the potassium in the blood falls below the required level.
• Don’t forget to rinse your mouth well after drinking apple cider vinegar otherwise the acid in vinegar can erode the tooth enamel. Also, it can cause yellow staining on the teeth.
• During the initial few days of consumption, you may experience temporary symptoms such as diarrhea, stomach cramp, heartburn or headache. In majority of the cases, these symptoms would fade away within a few days. If the symptoms persist, stop consuming it and discuss with a health expert
• Pregnant ladies, nursing women and people with chronic health conditions should consult their doctors before consuming it.
In short, start slow- with small quantity and gradually increase it up to 2 tablespoons a day in well diluted form for optimum results.
Benefits of apple cider vinegar for weight loss are obvious. But, being a natural remedy, it should not be considered as a miracle and it would bring the best results when combined with a healthy, low-calorie diet and positive lifestyle with regular physical workout.