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There are countless fat loss tips, ancient Chinese secrets, and gimmicks floating around. One such example is apple cider vinegar, which has been gaining popularity as a fat loss agent in recent years.

But is there any truth to the claims, or is apple cider vinegar just another fad we should ignore?

Let’s discuss.

What Is Apple Cider Vinegar (And Does It Affect Fat Loss)?

Apple cider vinegar is a product derived from fermentation. First, you cut or crush apples and combine them with yeast. This creates a process where the apple’s sugar gets converted to alcohol. You then add specific bacteria to convert the alcohol into acetic acid – the main vinegar compound. Apple cider vinegar also contains water and small amounts of other acids.

Interestingly, acetic acid appears to offer several benefits for fat loss, which is why many believe that apple cider vinegar aids weight loss. Most notably, research shows that apple cider vinegar can improve insulin’s function and normalize blood sugar levels (1, 2). 

One more paper shows an association between vinegar intake and weight loss (3). But the difference between the groups is minimal, and any number of things can explain that. For example, the people taking a bit more vinegar could have been slightly stricter with their nutrition.

Research also shows that vinegar consumption can increase fullness after eating and lead to lower calorie intakes (4). Still, the study had its limitations because it was short-term and only had 12 subjects. How these results might change over a longer period or with more people is up for debate.

Does Apple Cider Vinegar Genuinely Help With Weight Loss?

We could say so. But the problem isn’t if apple cider vinegar helps with weight loss. Instead, the issue stems from the idea that the product alone leads to fat loss, which is why so many people take shots of vinegar, hoping to shed pounds.

Yes, apple cider vinegar could have some minor fat-burning effects. (It certainly doesn’t hurt.) But fat-burning and fat loss are two different things. Fat-burning refers to your body’s breakdown of fat tissue for energy, which doesn’t necessarily mean you’re losing weight. Fat loss is when fatty tissue gradually decreases.

In the grand scheme of things, the fundamentals are what drive actual fat loss. This means:

  • Establishing and sustaining a calorie deficit – consuming fewer calories than you burn (5)
  • Eating enough protein to support your muscle mass and athletic performance as you diet (6)
  • Doing some resistance training to further secure your muscle mass and strength (7)
  • Doing a bit of cardio to burn extra calories and more easily sustain the calorie deficit
  • Following a meal frequency you enjoy, and that allows you to be consistent with your diet plan
  • Being consistent with the entire process and tracking your progress over time


You’re bound to find countless tactics, tips, techniques, and secrets for seemingly superior fat loss. The problem is, most of these have no scientific backing. The ones that do have minor and limited evidence that supports them.

True and sustainable weight loss comes down to understanding the fundamentals and following them until you reach your desired outcome.
If you’re looking for nutritional support or personal training in San Jose, head over to this page and get in contact with us today.

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