Since I have started my wellness journey, I have been looking for ways to make my mornings as healthy and productive as possible. So naturally, I was on the look for some “kick start”, so I followed many health tips and trends to see what works. I experimented with flaxseed oil, collagen powders, beauty elixirs, ginger shots, coconut oil, and supplement drinks – you name it! And, of course, apple cider vinegar caught my attention too.
Apple cider vinegar was a part of my daily morning routine for a while. I want to share my experience with ACV with you, which might help you decide if it’s the right thing for you.
Proven benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV):
May help to lower blood sugar levels
ACV is often used by people affected by type 2 diabetes because it can help lower blood glucose and improve insulin sensitivity. A 2004 study found that consuming a drink that included 20 grams of vinegar before a carbohydrate-rich meal reduced post-meal blood sugar by 64% compared to a placebo.
May help to manage weight
By balancing insulin levels, it helps to prevent from overeating during the day. In most cases, vinegar can increase the feeling of fullness which also aids to weight loss. In one study, two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar, consumed daily for three months, helped overweight adults lose an average of two to four pounds.
ACV can help to remove numerous types of bacteria and pathogens thanks to Acetic acid in it. Vinegar has been used for years to treat fungus and different kinds of infections in our bodies. Around 2,400 years ago, Hippocrates prescribed vinegar to treat wounds, coughs, and colds. Tommaso Del Garbo, a famous Italian physician, recommended people wash their hands, faces, and mouths with vinegar during a 1348 outbreak of plague in hopes of avoiding infection.
Moderation Is Key
When I started drinking ACV, I followed the popular instruction to mix two spoons of ACV on a glass of water with honey. It was also recommended to drink it 2-3 times a day which I found way too much for my body. When I was drinking too much ACV, I started to experience stomach pains, and overall, I felt weird. Also, I wasn’t enjoying the honey in it.
I found some side effects of taking too much ACV from more research. Side effects include worsening gastroparesis symptoms, nausea, low potassium levels, tooth enamel erosion, throat burns etc. All of these should be considered when taking ACV.
As I figured out where my stomach pains were coming from, I took only one spoon of ACV once a day, first thing in the morning, and I felt much better. Moderation is key!
So what have I experienced while taking apple cider vinegar?
A boost of energy.
Decreased appetite and fewer sugar cravings.
Loss of weight.
HOWEVER, please keep in mind that I exercised regularly and followed a healthy whole food plant-based diet. I think that played a more critical role in my wellness journey than anything else.
At some point, I stopped taking ACV daily because I started to experince low blood pressure symtoms. I naturally have low blood pressure, so I figured that ACV was also affecting it, making me feel anxious and lightheaded.
These days, ACV is still present in my diet. I like to use it in my salad dressing or as a refreshing tonic drink. The recipe is straightforward: add one tbsp of organic ACV with the mother to a glass of sparkling water with ice, and enjoy!
Having some greens dressed with ACV or a tablespoon of ACV in a glass of water before a meal high in sugar and processed carbs can help slow down glucose absorption. The acetic acid in the vinegar makes muscles soak up glucose faster, reducing a glucose spike by up to 20%!
Glucose spikes in one’s diet are associated with higher inflammation which can interfere with many hormonal systems and aggravate acne. I found this ACV hack helpful since I got on my hormone healing journey. Managing my blood sugar helps me avoid cravings and reduce the PMS symptoms.
Disclaimer: All of this information comes from a mixture of my personal experiences, my beauty and nutritional therapy training, and my research. I am not a medical professional, and I encourage you to speak to your doctor before implementing anything new into your routine.
- Vinegar Improves Insulin Sensitivity to a High-Carbohydrate Meal in Subjects With Insulin Resistance or Type 2 DiabetesCarol S. Johnston, Cindy M. Kim, Amanda J. BullerDiabetes Care Jan 2004, 27 (1) 281-282; DOI: 10.2337/diacare.27.1.281
- Kondo T, Kishi M, Fushimi T, Ugajin S, Kaga T. Vinegar intake reduces body weight, body fat mass, and serum triglyceride levels in obese Japanese subjects. Biosci Biotechnol Biochem. 2009 Aug;73(8):1837-43. doi: 10.1271/bbb.90231. Epub 2009 Aug 7. PMID: 19661687.
- Santos HO, de Moraes WMAM, da Silva GAR, Prestes J, Schoenfeld BJ. Vinegar (acetic acid) intake on glucose metabolism: A narrative review. Clin Nutr ESPEN. 2019 Aug;32:1-7. doi: 10.1016/j.clnesp.2019.05.008. Epub 2019 May 31. PMID: 31221273.
- Shishehbor F, Mansoori A, Shirani F. Vinegar consumption can attenuate postprandial glucose and insulin responses; a systematic review and meta-analysis of clinical trials. Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2017 May;127:1-9. doi: 10.1016/j.diabres.2017.01.021. Epub 2017 Mar 2. PMID: 28292654.