Apple cider vinegar and its million suggested uses—from cleaning your countertop to balancing your skin’s pH to making your hair shiny—have the feeling of urban legend. But does drinking a little bit of apple cider vinegar actually help you lose weight? We ask CB expert nutritionist Keri Glassman, MS, RD, CDN, what she thinks.
Q — CHARLOTTE’S BOOK READER
I heard doing shots of apple cider vinegar before meals can help with weight loss. Is this just a health fad? Is there any truth to the buzz?
A — KERI GLASSMAN, CELEBRITY NUTRITIONIST, FOUNDER OF NUTRITIOUS LIFE
Unfortunately, vinegar is not a miracle liquid. No matter what you drink before a meal, you still need to do all the “work” to lose weight.
The rumors about apple cider vinegar’s weight-loss powers come from multiple research studies that have shown drinking it may lower blood glucose (sugar) levels in people affected by type 2 diabetes. Some of those studies showed the effect only worked when the meal included complex carbohydrates (the starchy kind of carbs found in vegetables, whole grains, potatoes, and beans, as opposed to simple carbs like refined table sugar and corn syrup).
What does this mean? Researchers say the studies suggest vinegar plays a role in the breaking down of carbohydrates, particularly starches. Over time, that could contribute to an effective weight loss program in certain people, but it’s a seriously far cry from “Drink this, drop pounds.” You’ll be much better off starting with weight-loss strategies that have been proven to work, like managing stress and sticking to a not-even-close-to-boring balanced diet.
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Plus—how many cheat meals are you allowed?
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