Could this Kitchen Staple Help You Lose Weight?
Hi Wild Ones!
People have sworn by the weight-defying power of vinegar for hundreds of years.
But, is it true? Or is it just wishful thinking?
One thing is certain. Vinegar is an extremely low-calorie way to make our food yummier. If you’re not sure how to use it, you can check out my recipes for all kinds of inspiration.
But does vinegar’s magic go deeper? Let’s find out…
In high enough doses, vinegar (which is essentially diluted acetic acid) can promote AMPK production in human cells. AMPK is the enzyme that tells our bodies to start burning fat stores and up our energy production. So, it’s an important one for fighting our global obesity epidemic.
Next question: What constitutes a high enough dose? And can we get that from our salads?
Scientists exposed the endothelial cells from umbilical cords (after birth—no harm whatsoever done to mum or baby!) to acetate, which is what acetic acid becomes in our stomachs. They found that a concentration of at least 100 was needed to meaningfully boost AMPK production. With a tablespoon of vinegar (from, for example, a serving of salad dressing), the acetate concentration in our blood only hits that level for a quarter of an hour. In other words, not enough.
Granted, these are laboratory studies we’re talking about, so those results only tell us so much.
Now we have clinical studies to look at, too, and the results might interest you. A double blind trial of 150 “overweight” Japanese men and women examined the effects of apple cider vinegar on weight loss. One group received a high dose of vinegar (two tablespoons per day). One group drank only one tablespoon per day. And a placebo group drank an acidic beverage that didn’t actually contain any acetic acid.
The 150 test subjects otherwise went about their normal lives. They ate how they always did, exercised normally, and drank their vinegar-y beverages.
And within just one month, both vinegar groups were showing significant weight loss compared to the placebo. They lost more and more every month (with the high dose group experiencing better results), while the placebo group had gained weight by month three.
How significant was their weight loss? That depends on your definition…The high dose group lost over two kilograms (five pounds) in twelve weeks. That’s not a lot, but at the same time, they literally changed nothing else about their lifestyles, so it’s also extraordinary.
And both vinegar groups were specifically losing visceral fat around their abdomens, which the researchers confirmed through CT scans. Visceral fat is the kind that builds around our organs and leads to serious health complications.
Not surprisingly, the weight came back a month after the men and women stopped drinking the vinegar. This is true of any weight loss strategy: you have to stick with it.
Now, gorgeous, I bet you want to know why the vinegar worked. So do I!
We actually don’t know for sure, yet, but researchers suspect that it comes back to the effect of acetic acid on the body’s production of AMPK.
One more thing. Keep in mind, who’s funding these studies. The one I’ve described to you today took place thanks to the financial support of a vinegar company. That’s not surprising, and it’s not necessarily problematic (we’d probably never have any of that data if it wasn’t for them!), but it’s still important to know. I don’t want to hide any information from you.
But that’s the best part about experimenting with natural, healthy, chemical-free weight loss solutions. There are no bad outcomes! No matter what, you’ll have some really delicious salads, and maybe you’ll even drop a few kilos!
What do you have to lose? (Except those extra pounds, of course!)
Want to learn more about eating for the body you want? Check out Food Dynamics: The Taste and Flavour Solution for the Whole Family, and let me help you thrive!
I would love to hear from you, too. Have you or someone you know ever used apple cider vinegar for weight loss? What were your results? Share in the comments below.
F Brighenti, G Castellani, L Benini, M C Casiraghi, E Leopardi, R Crovetti, G Testolin. Effect of neutralized and native vinegar on blood glucose and acetate responses to a mixed meal in healthy subjects. Eur J Clin Nutr. 1995 Apr;49(4):242-7.
J B Kohn. Is vinegar an effective treatment for glycemic control or weight loss? J Acad Nutr Diet. 2015 Jul;115(7):1188.