Apple cider vinegar has been a wonder ingredient in inducing weight loss. Including ACV in your diet is believed to aid in reducing weight, but so does other vinegar.
A daily dose of ACV can’t be that harmful to your health, but here are what three registered dietitians have to say to convince you otherwise:
1. It can cause you serious stomach problems
Vinegar is acidic and some people can’t tolerate it well.
It’s best to avoid ACV if you have ulcerative colitis, digestive tract inflammation or just being prone to stomach aches, said Leslie Bonci, RD, the owner of Active Eating Advice.
Bonci added that while vinegar enhances the flavor to the food without skewing its caloric value, it’s not some elixir for your major transformation.
2. It can alter your bowel movements
Apple cider vinegar contains pectin since it is made from fermented apples. Pectin is a soluble dietary fiber that acts as a natural gelling agent, said Eliza Savage, a Registered Dietitian in New York City who works at Middleberg Nutrition.
The pectin in ACV helps form the stool, promote good bacteria growth in the gut and lessens inflammation. But when you consume too much ACV, you could develop diarrhea.
According to Savage, the ACV may pull water into the bowel, therefore stool will come out watery and more frequently.
3. It can compromise your kidneys
“There has been some research to show that if you do have any sort of weakened kidneys or immunocompromised kidneys, then consuming anything that is highly acidic is not going to be advised,” Amanda Baker Lemelin, Registered Dietitian and Nutrition Expert, said.
ACV should always be diluted. Mix 1 to 2 teaspoons of ACV with 8 ounces of water and progress up to 1 tablespoon mixed with 8 ounces of water, Savage suggested.
4. It can make you feel bloated
Apple cider vinegar delays stomach emptying, thereby causing bloating, gas and nausea.
“At times delayed stomach emptying can cause temporary weight loss,” Savage said. “But a healthier diet alternative would be to increase water intake and choose more high fiber non-starchy vegetables,” she added.
5. It can exacerbate your acid reflux symptoms
An increase in ACV is an increase in stomach acid. More stomach acid can worsen your burning sensation if you are already experiencing heartburn or reflux.
“Anyone who has acid reflux will want to be cautious of overly acidic foods,” Amanda Baker Lemelin, a registered dietitian and nutrition expert, said.
6. It can harm your immune system
Evidence suggests that probiotics in the gut help build a strong immune system, but with ACV, it inhibits its probiotic properties.
Bonci said though fermented foods can help increase good bacteria in your gut, the vinegar depletes the probiotic punch that you need to boost your immune system.
Apple cider vinegar can help you lose weight in some ways and make you look good, but going crazy over ACV use could push out other nutrients from your diet that is obviously more harmful than being beneficial.