Apple cider vinegar has been a remedy for poor health for literally thousands of years, it was even used by Roman soldiers to support vitality during the conquests of foreign lands. But why? What makes apple cider vinegar so good for you and how can it promote weight loss? The key is acetic acid which is the primary ingredient that develops during the fermentation process. Acetic acid is a short-chain fatty acid and it has been proven by medical researchers such as Ostman et al. to reduce the metabolic response to food. What this means is a lower blood glucose and insulin response after a meal and a greater feeling of satiation. In essence, adding apple cider vinegar to your diet leaves you feeling fuller for longer and reduces fat build up when consuming an excess amount of calories.
This reason alone makes apple cider vinegar a worthy supplement to one’s diet, especially around meal time. However, a good apple cider vinegar supplement doesn’t just contain apple cider vinegar but rather a myriad of helpful micronutrients that promote weight loss which we shall explore below.
The first supplement worth mentioning and one that is fundamental in your diet whether or not you’re trying to lose weight is vitamin B6. It’s rich in meat diets already but often less present in vegan and vegetarian diets. The reason it’s so important is that it’s essential for an enzyme that promotes the breakdown of carbs, fats and proteins. A study from 2008 from Rodriguez-Rodriguez et al used random trials to indicate that B6 was present in the hypocaloric diets of women who had lost weight. If one were to have a B6 deficiency then they’d certainly struggle to lose a meaningful amount of weight as their bodies would be ineffective at digesting nutrients correctly.
Apple pectin is also another great addition often found in apple cider vinegar supplements but which is hard to find elsewhere. Pectin is a soluble fibre which means several important things for weight loss and digestion. Fibre’s benefits are already numerous as it alleviates constipation and allows a more fluid digestive process, however because pectin is also soluble it retains moisture in the stomach leaving you feeling full without having to eat that much, causing your brain to release hormones to indicate your satiated and not going to be hungry for a while. It’s jelly-like nature also slows down the movement of food through your stomach and digestive tract. A slower digestion will also leave you feeling fuller meaning you’ll want to eat less throughout the day. What’s so great about apple pectin is that it’s completely natural, coming from the stalks of apple plants, and is already used in the making of natural jams and other conservatives.
A few more important micronutrients to look out for are iodine and potassium as both have been linked to weight loss. A 2019 study in the ‘Nutrients’ medical journal managed to correlate potassium intake with a decreased BMI, what’s fascinating is that it’s still not exactly clear why although we do know that potassium is essential for your muscles to operate. Iodine, on the other hand, we know is used by your thyroid to control growth and support a healthy, consistent metabolism which is naturally the key process that dictates weight loss. An unhealthy metabolism puts your body in jeopardy.
You may have heard of potassium and iodine supplements before but you likely will be less familiar with Lecithin and Bromelain which are two types of naturally occurring substances that can help break down fats and stop pockets of fatty tissue developing in the body. Lecithin does this by assisting your liver with the breakdown of incoming fat molecules into the body. Bromelain, on the other hand, increases TNF-Alpha generation which inhibits fat production, as has been proven in studies on rat cell cultures. Another great micronutrient to watch out for is spirulina which is an algae and one of the oldest organisms on earth, it’s packed with protein and nutrients and helps reduce weight gain by preventing hepatic fat accumulation as indicated in James J DiNicolantonio 2020 study on the substance.
One more supplement you should look out for when picking a good apple cider vinegar supplement is kelp. Now seaweed might seem like an odd supplement to want in your diet but the proven benefits are actually monumental. Kelp contains a natural fibre called alginate. Alginate, according to a study conducted by Matthew Wilcox et al, is shown to block the enzymatic breakdown of some substances, especially fat. What this means is that having alginate in your diet can actually prevent the digestion of fat meaning it’ll pass right through your digestive tract without being absorbed. On top of this kelp also contains Vitamins A and K, calcium, iron and magnesium making it a very worthy addition to any healthy diet.
These are only a few of the great micronutrients likely found in a good apple cider vinegar supplement. Individually they already add a lot of value to your diet but in combination they make the supplement a genuinely effective weight loss tool that can be used to assist a healthy diet and exercise in burning the necessary calories to put you in a calorie deficit and reduce body fat.
Apple Cider Vinegar study: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/16015276/
Vitamin B6 study: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/18679411/
Kelp study: https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24176371
Potassium study: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6627830/
Spirulina study: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7061888/