The Bittersweet Truth About Vinegar

Updated on December 3, 2018

Does Vinegar Promote Weight Loss?

I’m sure you have seen all the hype online about the benefits of vinegar in your diet, most especially apple cider vinegar when it comes to weight loss. Well, I hate to burst your bubble, but it is not fully true.

Now don’t get your panties in a bunch, die-hard vinegar fans. While it is not a huge help, it does give your weight loss a minor boost. In a Japanese study, 175 obese test subjects were either given water or vinegar for 12 weeks while following the same diet. Results showed a slight increase in weight loss among those drinking vinegar than those drinking water. In the 12-week period, those who were drinking vinegar lost an average of 1 to 2 lbs.

Shortly after the study, participants checked their weight again and were found to have gained all the weight back since they ceased drinking the vinegar. It is not a significant amount of weight loss to deserve all the praise and notoriety it has received, but it does have some truth to it. However, there is another application behind the use of vinegar that merits its praise.

Vinegar for Liver and Gallbladder Health

But what about the liver and gallbladder? There is no significant research study that I have found that investigates the connection between vinegar and liver and gallbladder health, but that does not mean one does not exist. There are, however, several reports online about the benefits of vinegar, most particularly apple cider vinegar, claiming that it flushes the liver and cuts down on gallstones. One such example, LiverFlush posted a video showing apple cider vinegar dissolving gallstones in a dish. One problem with this demonstration, which he acknowledges in the video, is that he placed the vinegar directly on the stones. In the body, on the other hand, it would not work the same way.

In the human body, the vinegar would have to go through the digestive system before reaching the area. How much of the acidic element would be left by the time it reached that area is unknown. But that does not mean that it would not work in the body—merely that you would need to ingest the solution often for it to have any significant effect.

My Personal Experience

I myself have gallstone issues. Three years ago, I came across a drink mix online that I tried. I have found that drinking this mixture reduced the problems I've had with gallstones. I have also lost a small amount of weight, and both my sugar (I am type II diabetic) and my blood pressure have improved.

While it may not work in the same way for everyone, my own personal experience is that it works for me. The mixture is fairly simple, 2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar, ½ teaspoon cinnamon, 1 teaspoon lemon juice, 1 tablespoon honey, and 8 ounces water. Mix together and drink before 1 or 2 meals a day.

While its weight loss or liver/gall stones applications are not significant enough to rush out to the store to buy some, its medicinal qualities for sugar levels does make it worth the trip. Not to mention, anything that can aid in your health whether scientifically proven or not is always a plus. Combined with diet and exercise, this wondrous solution can help you to a healthier happier you but do not rely solely on it to correct or prevent diabetes, obesity, or gallstones.

Vinegar of any variety has proven to help lower and support balanced sugar levels in diabetics. During a research study conducted by Professor Carol Johnston of Arizona State University, Professor Johnston discovered that students who ingested a mixture of vinegar, water, and saccharine had significant better sugar levels than those placed on a placebo solution of just water and saccharine. The study consisted of three different types of test subjects; pre-diabetics, diabetics, and healthy non-diabetics. While there was a significant difference in the pre-diabetics more so than full blown diabetics, results showed that vinegar helped both to break down the high carbohydrate diet they were on during the test.

While vinegar could never replace the use of insulin for diabetics, the use of vinegar in your daily routine can aid in maintaining sugar levels alongside your normal medication. But who would wish to swig down this bitter drink? Well, there is a solution that can help you to add this not so great tasting element into your diet and make it enjoyable. Just by adding a small salad topped with a vinegar based dressing before your lunch or dinner is enough to make a difference in your health.

If you choose to make your own, blend 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar with 1 teaspoon sweetener, 1 teaspoon lemon or grapefruit juice, and 1 tablespoon of oil for a simple quick dressing. Like it fruity? Add a bit of pureed fruit to it for that fruity flavor.

However you decide to add this little healthy aid to your diet (my fiancee adds it to chicken broth and drinks it), It is a good addition to your regular routine for a healthier, happier you.


Kondo, Toomo, et al. “Vinegar Intake Reduces Body Weight, Body Fat Mass, and Serum Triglyceride Levels In Obese Japanese Subjects.” Japan Society for Bioscience, Biotechnology, and Agrochemistry, vol. 73, no. 8, 23 Aug. 2009, pp. 1837–1843. J-Stage, doi: Accessed 24 June 2017.

"Vinegar found to help lower waking blood glucose." ASU Now: Access, Excellence, Impact. ASU News, 27 Feb. 2009. Web. 24 June 2017. <>.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and does not substitute for diagnosis, prognosis, treatment, prescription, and/or dietary advice from a licensed health professional. Drugs, supplements, and natural remedies may have dangerous side effects. If pregnant or nursing, consult with a qualified provider on an individual basis. Seek immediate help if you are experiencing a medical emergency.


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