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Apple Cider Vinegar for Weight Loss: Does It Work?

People have used apple cider vinegar as a remedy for centuries because of its presumed healing properties. For thousands of years, its most common uses were for detoxification, wound healing, and even as an antibiotic. More recently, apple cider vinegar became a popular home remedy for everything from treating sore throats to controlling dandruff. 

Most notoriously, though, it’s been used to promote weight loss. 

Although dosing instructions aren’t consistent across the board, most websites endorse adding one to two teaspoons of apple cider vinegar to eight ounces of water and drinking before a meal. This ritual seems easy enough, but does it lead to lasting weight loss 

In reality, there’s not a single food or component of food that is wholly responsible for substantial long-term weight loss.  

The most notable study regarding vinegar for weight loss on humans was from 2009. In this experiment, participants lost an average of two to four pounds over a three-month period by drinking one to two teaspoons of the vinegar each day. This study did not specifically use apple cider vinegar, though, and the weight loss results weren’nearly as drastic as the internet would have you believe.   

While drinking apple cider vinegar isn’t likely to help significantly in the weight loss department by itself, it may remind you to be more mindful of other choicesIt’s not wise to drink any type of vinegar straight due to its acidity and the damage it can cause to the teeth, esophagus, and stomach. However, there’s very little danger in using it to add flavor to sauces, dressings, and marinades. In fact, vinegar of all types can add loads of flavor without the use of fat or salt. 

To maximize and sustain weight loss, it’s best to take a holistic approach. At Structure House, we promote weight loss by integrating psychotherapy, nutritional support, and an active lifestyle. Our goal isn’t for participants to lose as much weight as possible while on campus, but to gain the tools and confidence to continue to lose weight at home.  

Learn more about Structure House’s nutritional approach.

About Valerie Dickerson

Valerie is a Registered Dietitian and Certified Diabetes Educator. She received both her Bachelors of Science in Nutrition and Dietetics and Master’s degree in Nutrition from Meredith College in Raleigh, North Carolina. Valerie enjoys helping people develop a deeper understanding of food so that they have lasting lifestyle changes beyond their stay at Structure House. She prides herself on helping participants break down complex nutritional issues into practical realistic goals. She believes balance and a healthy relationship with food is the key to developing a lifelong food plan that fuels the body while not depriving it. Valerie conducts individual nutrition sessions, teaches nutrition classes, facilitates grocery store tours and restaurant outings, and supports participants on the Bridge Module for Binge and Emotional Overeating. Valerie originally joined the Structure House team in 2011, took a three year hiatus to be with her young children, and rejoined the team in 2018.

View all posts by Valerie Dickerson