Detox Diet with Apple Cider Vinegar

28 January, 2020
People talk a lot about the apple cider vinegar detox diet, but does it actually work? Today, we'll tell you what the studies say.

In recent years, apple cider vinegar has become popular as the ideal ingredient for detox and weight loss. However, people have started to question these health claims because their properties aren’t as magical as some people seem to think.

To start with, it’s important to remember that detox diets are usually quite restrictive and should only be followed for a few days. On the other hand, while apple cider vinegar might have health benefits, the evidence is limited and many of its properties have been extremely exaggerated.

So, does this diet work? Can it really help you lose weight? A lot of people swear it does, but, like many other natural products, you should take it as a complement to your healthy habits. Let’s explain…

Nutritional properties of apple cider vinegar

A bottle of apple cider vinegar.

Apple cider vinegar isn’t a “superfood” or a miracle cure-all for your health. However, it does have some interesting nutritional properties. According to data published in SELF Nutrition Datathis fermented product provides:

  • Moderate quantities of pectin.
  • Vitamins B1, B2, B6, biotin, folic acid, niacin, pantothenic acid.
  • Vitamin C.
  • Small quantities of minerals like sodium, phosphorus, potassium, calcium, iron, and magnesium.

In a publication from Dr. Edwin K. McDonald IV at the University of Chicago Medical Center, he argues that apple cider vinegar has polyphenols (plant-based antioxidants) and probiotics, which help explain its health benefits. However, more research still needs to be done.

Does an apple cider vinegar detox diet work?

The apple cider vinegar detox diet, like many other “detox” diets, is supposed to “cleanse” your body or help it “eliminate toxins.” However, this is one of the many fake properties people have attributed to apple cider vinegar.

While it’s true that some foods contribute to people’s digestion and feeling of satiety, it’s wrong to think that they can “detox” the body on their own. Organs such as the kidneys, liver, and large intestine serve just that purpose. Their regular function is to eliminate waste.

A woman eating a salad with a measuring tape.

So, instead of looking for miracle detox remedies, try adopting a healthy lifestyle that protects the health of these organs. A balanced diet, physical exercise, proper hydration, and avoiding bad habits like smoking and alcohol can go a long way.

So, if you are looking for a concrete answer to the question about the “detoxifying” abilities of apple cider vinegar, the answer is “NO.” There are no special foods that can “purify” the body on their own. That being said, there are some good reasons that you should include this product in your diet.

Science-based benefits of apple cider vinegar

In recent years, some studies have looked at the effects of apple cider vinegar on the body and the results support claims about some of its health benefits. However, we still need more study to make sure that it’s safe and effective. So, what can apple cider vinegar do for you?

1. It can be an ally in your weight loss efforts

As long as its part of a healthy diet and good habits, apple cider vinegar can be your ally if you want to lose weight. A randomized clinical trial published in the Journal of Functional Food found that apple cider vinegar helps suppress your appetite and might help you lose weight.

Likewise, a study published in the Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry found that the acetic acid in apple cider vinegar has a modest effect on speeding up metabolism and burning calories. It’s not enough on its own to trigger significant weight loss, however.

2. It can help regulate blood glucose

Apple cider vinegar should never replace medical treatment for blood sugar levels, but you can use it as a complementary treatment. A small study published in the Journal of the American Association of Diabetes found that this product helps reduce glucose levels after meals.

A person checking their blood sugar.

3. it has probiotics

Probiotic foods are a great ally for healthy gut microbiota. Apple cider vinegar, since it is a great fermented food, is a probiotic that can have beneficial bacteria for your body.

Words of caution about apple cider vinegar

At this point, it’s clear that an apple cider detox is a myth and that it doesn’t have any magical benefits. However, you can see that in general, it is a nutritious product that can have some positive effects on your health.

So, if you want to incorporate it into your diet, no problem. Most of the time, it’s safe. However, before you eat or drink it, keep in mind the following:

  • You should drink it diluted in agua (1 tbs for every 200 ml of water) because it’s acidic and could mess up your stomach.
  • The acidity of the vinegar could also damage the enamel on your teeth. After you drink it, wait 30 minutes for your health to be clean.
  • If you have liver problems or are taking medication, do not try these remedies. Instead, talk to your doctor.
  • Khezri, S. S., Saidpour, A., Hosseinzadeh, N., & Amiri, Z. (2018). Beneficial effects of Apple Cider Vinegar on weight management, Visceral Adiposity Index and lipid profile in overweight or obese subjects receiving restricted calorie diet: A randomized clinical trial. Journal of Functional Foods, 43, 95–102. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jff.2018.02.003
  • Kondo, T., Kishi, M., Fushimi, T., & Kaga, T. (2009). Acetic acid upregulates the expression of genes for fatty acid oxidation enzymes in liver to suppress body fat accumulation. Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry57(13), 5982–5986. https://doi.org/10.1021/jf900470c
  • Joshi, V. K., & Sharma, S. (2009). Cider vinegar: Microbiology, technology and quality. In Vinegars of the World (pp. 197–207). Springer Milan. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-88-470-0866-3_12
  • Iman, M., Moallem, S. A., & Barahoyee, A. (2015). Effect of apple cider Vinegar on blood glucose level in diabetic mice. Pharmaceutical Sciences20(4), 163–168. https://doi.org/10.5681/PS.2015.006
  • Safari, R., Hoseinifar, S. H., Nejadmoghadam, S., & Khalili, M. (2017). Apple cider vinegar boosted immunomodulatory and health promoting effects of Lactobacillus casei in common carp (Cyprinus carpio). Fish and Shellfish Immunology67, 441–448. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.fsi.2017.06.017