Is It Ok To Drink Apple Cider Vinegar?

Is It Ok To Drink Apple Cider Vinegar? 

Is it ok to drink apple cider vinegar? This, indeed, is a complicated question. I mean, a lot of us feel like apple cider vinegar is extremely good for our health, but is it really the case? 

For thousands of years, people have been using this one product for cooking and other medical benefits. There are a number of people who claim that it has several health benefits, which include losing weight, improving sugar levels in the blood, relief from indigestion, and a lesser risk of any heart disease and even cancer. 

With a number of potential uses, it may be tough to know how much apple cider you are supposed to take every day. The recommendations for dosage may vary from one person to the other, but consuming one to two tablespoons of it with water after or before meals may give you good results. 

In this article, we shall see if it is at all ok to drink apple cider vinegar and, if so, how much and how to drink it in the safest way possible. 

What Is Apple Cider Vinegar?

What Is Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is a combination of apples and yeast. The yeast helps convert the sugar in the apple into alcohol. Then, bacteria are added to this mixture to ferment the alcohol into acetic acid. 

Acetic acid concentration in apple cider vinegar makes up for around 5-6% of it. It is classified as a weak acid but has quite strong acidic properties when in its concentrated state. 

Apart from being an acetic acid, vinegar also contains water along with trace amounts of acids, minerals, and vitamins. 

A number of studies have found that apple cider vinegar promotes the burning of fat. As a result, it largely helps in losing weight. It is also very effective in lowering the sugar level in the blood, increasing insulin sensitivity, and improving cholesterol levels. 

However, it is pretty unfortunate that there are not many studies that support the regular use of apple cider vinegar. 

“Apple cider vinegar is made from acetic acid, which may contribute to weight loss and health benefits such as lower blood sugar and healthier cholesterol levels.” 

Types Of Apple Cider Vinegar

Types Of Apple Cider Vinegar 

Before I jump to the conclusion on whether it is ok to drink apple cider vinegar, let me throw some light on the different types of apple cider vinegar that are available in the market. A lot of people are not even aware that there are different types of apple ciders that are available for them. Not knowing which one is the best suit for consumption may result in severe health issues. 

Apple cider vinegar is made through a process known as fermentation, as I previously discussed. Most of the apple cider vinegars that you find in a regular store are pasteurized, clear, and filtered. But you may also get the unfiltered and raw apple cider vinegar, which has a cloudy sediment in it. Known as “the mother,” this sediment is composed of the settled yeast and bacteria.  

Some experts give the entire credit to the mother for the health benefits that come with apple cider vinegar. It is presumed to contain minimal amounts of probiotics, which are very good for your gut health. However, there is no research that would assure that the mother actually has any health benefit. 

The acetic acid present in apple cider vinegar may also be partially responsible for any of the health benefits that it offers. However, there are other types of vinegars that also offer the benefits of acetic acid. 

You may also purchase apple cider vinegar powders, pills, or gummies. However, there is hardly any research that can confirm that these supplements are actually effective. As the FDA does not regulate any dietary supplements, no one can be sure what exactly lies in them. 

Is It Ok To Drink Apple Cider Vinegar?

Apple cider vinegar contains some really helpful properties, mainly because of its acetic acid content. 

“Acetic acid is a really important metabolite in our bodies, and the only dietary source of acetic acid is vinegar,” 

says Carol Johnston, Ph.D., associate dean and professor of nutrition at the College of Health Solutions at Arizona State University. 

However, as a cure-all, apple cider vinegar holds scientific scrutiny. “We don’t have evidence to back up a lot of the claims,” Johnston says. 

Advantages Of Apple Cider Vinegar 

Advantages Of Apple Cider Vinegar

Most of the studies that support apple cider vinegar are pretty minor, and the results have not been decisive either. We definitely need a lot more solid proof that would confirm why apple cider vinegar is actually beneficial upon consumption. 

This is what research has found so far: 

Helps With Weight Loss

One study has found that drinking apple cider vinegar twice every day has helped individuals follow a reduced-calorie diet and lose a couple of extra pounds. But the was quite short-termed and small. It only followed 39 people and only for 12 weeks. 

Some researchers believe that the acetic acid in apple cider vinegar helps speed up the metabolism. However, the data did not bear this. It might have happened that people lost more weight due to the placebo effect. Or maybe the acetic acid made them suffer from nausea, causing them to eat comparatively less. 

“Drinking 1–2 tbsp. (15–30 mL) of apple cider vinegar each day for several months may increase weight loss in people with overweight. However, more research is needed.” 

Lowering Blood Sugar Levels

There are a number of smaller studies that confirm that taking a spoon or two full of apple cider vinegar after meals can help reduce sugar levels in the blood. However, the effect was certainly moderate, and we definitely need a lot more research to find out exactly how it happens. Remember that apple cider vinegar can never be a replacement for your diabetes medicines and a healthy lifestyle. If you at all want to incorporate apple cider vinegar into your diet, make sure to consult your doctor before doing anything as such. 

“Drinking four tsp. (20 mL) Apple cider vinegar diluted in water immediately before a high-carb meal can reduce blood sugar spikes.” 

It Can Lower Cholesterol

The very same study that claimed that apple cider vinegar helps in losing weight claimed that apple cider vinegar also helps in lowering cholesterol in the body. It also helps increase “good” cholesterol levels and lowers triglyceride levels. There are other studies that came up with the exact results. However, none of these research studies are completely accurate. Hence, it is better to not fully rely on these as they may have adverse effects on your health. 

Helps With Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS) 

PCOS is a hormonal condition associated with high levels of androgen hormones, abnormal menstrual cycles, insulin resistance, and ovarian cysts. 

As per an older study, it was found that females suffering from PCOS who drank 15mL of apple cider vinegar with 100mL of water after dinner saw an improvement in their hormonal levels and experienced periods that were more regular. 

While we still need a lot more research to confirm this fact, one tbsp of apple cider vinegar is a safe option to have control over PCOS. 

“Regularly drinking 1 tbsp. (15 mL) of apple cider vinegar with about 7 oz. (100 mL) of water after dinner may improve symptoms of PCOS.” 

Improving Digestion

Many people prefer incorporating apple cider vinegar into their daily routine to improve digestion. 

The theory behind it says that apple cider vinegar increases the stomach acidity. This allows for the body to create more pepsin, the enzyme that helps break down protein. 

While we still do not have any solid research that can confirm the use of apple cider vinegar to boost digestion, acidic supplements like betaine HCL may help increase the acidity of the stomach. 

“Some claim drinking 1 to 2 tbsp. (15–30 mL) of apple cider vinegar before meals can aid digestion. However, there is currently no research to support this practice.” 

General Wellness

Among the many other popular reasons as to why one prefers to consume apple cider vinegar is its benefit against heart diseases, fighting infection, and reducing the risks of cancer. 

There is very little scientific evidence that could support this kind of claim. We do not yet have any recommended dose that would best suit the human body. 

There are animal tests and test-tube studies that confirm that apple cider vinegar may help reduce the risk of cancer, reduce heart diseases, and slow bacterial growth. But none of it has yet been tested on humans. 

“There is no evidence that apple cider vinegar can protect against heart disease, cancer, or infection in humans, so no dosage recommendations can be made.” 

Drawbacks Of Apple Cider Vinegar


You surely did not assume that there are no drawbacks to consuming a product that does not even have enough research done on it. There are certain benefits that you may get from consuming apple cider vinegar. However, it has drawbacks, too. Let us now have a look at the negative effects that apple cider vinegar may have on the human body. 

Delay In Emptying The Stomach

A couple of very small studies in humans have proved that apple cider vinegar can reduce the time food takes to leave the stomach and enter the lower digestive tract. This may slow down the absorption of nutrients into our bloodstream. 

However, this may actually worsen the symptoms of gastroparesis, a very common issue that affects people who have diabetes. In gastroparesis, the nerves in the stomach do not properly work. Therefore, the food stays in there for a long time and does not empty at a normal rate. 

“Research suggests apple cider vinegar may slow the rate at which food leaves the stomach. This may worsen symptoms of gastroparesis and make blood sugar management more difficult for people with type 1 diabetes.” 

Digestive Side Effects

For some people, apple cider vinegar may cause unfriendly digestive symptoms. There are some researchers who claim that in the short term, acetic acid helps in decreasing appetite. But we need more studies that would help us understand if this effect will continue in the long term. However, there is one study that suggests that in certain cases, food intake and appetite may be reduced because of indigestion. 

“Apple cider vinegar may help reduce appetite, but it may also cause feelings of nausea, particularly when consumed as part of a drink with an unpleasant flavor.” 

Bone Loss And Low Potassium Levels

We do not have any controlled study on the effects of apple cider vinegar on potassium levels in blood and bone health at present. However, there is just one case report of low blood potassium and loss of bone attributing to big doses of apple cider vinegar over a long period of time. 

“There is one case report of low potassium levels and osteoporosis, which is likely caused by drinking too much apple cider vinegar.” 

Erosion Of The Tooth Enamel

Beverages and acidic foods may also damage tooth enamel. Fruit juices and soft drinks are more widely studied, but some researchers claim that the acetic acid present in apple cider vinegar may also result in damaged tooth enamel. 

“The acetic acid in vinegar may weaken dental enamel and lead to loss of minerals and tooth decay.” 

Throat Burns

This is one of the most common complaints that people have against apple cider vinegar. Apple cider has a high potential to result in esophageal burns, or as we commonly call it, throat burns. A review of harmful liquids that children accidentally swallowed showed that acetic acid present in vinegar was the primary acid that results in throat burns. 

“The acetic acid in apple cider vinegar has caused throat burns in children. One woman experienced throat burns after an apple cider vinegar tablet became lodged in her esophagus.” 

The Bottom Line

It is common for people to ask is it ok to drink apple cider vinegar. By now, you know that there are no proven benefits to it. So, even if you are drinking it, there are no solid claims that it will help you achieve the results you are looking for. 

A small amount of apple cider vinegar may still be acceptable, but drinking it in large amounts every day may have adverse effects on your body. Therefore, it is important to monitor how much and how you consume, if at all you consume it on a daily basis. 

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About Author

Upasana is a budding journalist who has a keen interest in writing. She considers writing as therapeutic and is most confident when she writes. She is passionate about music, movies and fashion. She writes in a way that connects with the audience in a personal level. She is optimistic, fun loving and opinionated.

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