Apple Cider Vinegar and the Keto Diet

 

Apple Cider Vinegar on Amazon

A popular term these days is “Life Hack”, The internet is littered with Life-Hacks from chilling wine with frozen grapes to dozens of ways to use a toilet paper tube to organize your life, there’s a life hack for practically everything and we love them. What exactly is a life hack? Merriam-Webster defines life-hack as: a usually simple and clever tip or technique for accomplishing some familiar task more easily and efficiently. Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) was used in the ancient civilizations of Egypt, Babylonia, Greece, as well as the Roman Empire. Hippocrates used vinegar to fight infections, treat wounds, and help alleviate coughs. ACV was used for multiple known medical conditions from simple digestive problems, for endurance and stamina, and for external wound care. While forgotten for many years as more sophisticated remedies and cures were developed, Apple Cider Vinegar has made a comeback as a popular life hack for a variety of things, among them weight loss & fat burning

Is it ok to have apple cider vinegar while on a keto diet?

Weight loss and fat burning are terms that are near and dear to those on the ketogenic diet. that natural question becomes is it OK to have apple cider vinegar while on keto AND is there a complimentary benefit to combining the two?

ACV Nutritional Facts – Click for full size

 

First, from a nutritional standpoint, Apple Cider Vinegar is keto-friendly… wait, “apples are not generally consumed on keto because they are high in sugar”, true.  Apple cider vinegar comes from apples that have been crushed, distilled, and then fermented, the sugar is consumed in the fermentation process. This process yields a product consisting of 94-95% water and 5-6% acetic acid. Other than trace amounts of potassium and other acids, ACV is not a major source of fiber or other nutrients. Rather, its health benefits are derived from acids and phytochemicals. At 3 calories per serving and 0.1g of carbohydrates, it certainly fits the profile for a keto or low carb diet.

Next, what are the weight loss benefits attributed to Apple Cider Vinegar?

  • A small study published in the Journal of the American Association of Diabetes describes that ACV significantly reduced post-meal blood glucose 30 & 60 minutes after a high carbohydrate meal (Bagel with butter & orange juice) – Link to study 
  • Another small study indicates that ACV may aid in weight loss published in the Journal of Functional Food had 39 participants on a calorie-restricted diet that was 250 calories less than daily estimated requirements. Some participants were also given a tablespoon of ACV with lunch & dinner. The group that received the ACV lost an average of 8.8lbs over the 12-week test, the group that did not receive ACV lost an average of 5lbs over the same period – Link to study
  • Another study from the Journal of Medicinal food indicates that ACV reduces the risk of obesity in rats fed a high-fat diet supplemented with apple cider vinegar – Link to Study

More studies need to be conducted to get a clearer picture of the effects of ACV on the keto diet, but the indications are that there are clearly good health reasons why you would want to add apple cider vinegar to your diet, most notably improved gut health, but the advantage of combining Apple Cider Vinegar with the keto diet might be minimal at best.

How do you drink apple cider vinegar on keto?

Apple Cider Vinegar

Just because combining Apple Cider Vinegar & Keto may not yield exponential benefits that doesn’t mean that each can be positive when considered individually… So how would you “drink” ACV on keto? I’ve tried a few of the recipes found online for ACV, most of them are awful, but that is more an indication of my pallette than any shortcomings of the recipes… I just not a fan of the taste of ACV, plus I sometimes get a queasy feeling and upset stomach which complies with the appetite suppression benefits some claim ACV provides.

 

  • Apple Cider Vinegar Detox recipes: Here’s a link to a video featuring (2) different popular ACV detox drinks from Thomas DeLauer, renowned health author, nutrition expert & YouTube celebrity who happens to be a big believer in ACV and does an awesome job explaining why he recommends combining apple cider vinegar with the keto diet – Link to Video
  • Cooking with Apple Cider Vinegar – This is certainly my preferred method of consuming ACV. Besides the obvious oil & vinegar salad dressing adding ACV to stir-fried vegetable to add a zest of flavor and tanginess to keto-friendly vegetables while adding virtually no calories

 

Does apple cider vinegar help with carbs?

Does apple cider vinegar help with carbs?

As outlined earlier in the study published in the Journal of the American Association of Diabetes, apple cider vinegar can help prevent blood sugar spikes when paired with a meal that is high in carbohydrates. A keto diet is already going to be low in carbohydrates, so ACV’s effects in that respect could be mitigated on a ketogenic diet.

That being said, the ketogenic diet is a highly restrictive diet and difficult to maintain at times. Using Apple Cider Vinegar to decrease blood sugar spikes during a “cheat” meal could lessen the impact of the cheat meal and ultimately be a useful tool in maintaining a keto lifestyle long term

How much apple cider vinegar should you drink a day?

How much apple cider vinegar should you drink a day?

Although recommendations for “dosing” vary, typically 1 to 2 teaspoons (15-30 ml) mixed with water before or with meals. Among the multitude of experts that recommend this dosage is Dr. Robert H. Shmerling Senior Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publishing.

In the post-Dr. Shmerling goes on to list some of the benefits of using ACV and cites some of the same studies that I’ve linked in this post, and does feel that apple cider vinegar is a natural remedy for a bunch of things with limited danger involved, he does go on to list some of the side effects of ACV.

For many natural remedies, there seems to be little risk, so a common approach is “why not try it?” However, for diets with high vinegar content, a few warnings are in order:

  • Vinegar should be diluted. Its high acidity can damage tooth enamel when sipped “straight” — consuming it as a component of vinaigrette salad dressing is a better way.
  • It has been reported to cause or worsen low potassium levels. That’s particularly important for people taking medications that can lower potassium (such as common diuretics taken to treat high blood pressure).
  • Vinegar can alter insulin levels. People with diabetes should be particularly cautious about a high vinegar diet.

Link to post

Conclusion

There is ample data to conclude that adding Apple Cider Vinegar to your diet regimen can result in many positive benefits and for the most part with little risk. The combination of ACV and the keto diet seems to have mild to minimal direct benefit depending on who you listen to, but it’s evident that more studies need to be performed to get a clearer picture. An excellent resource for studies done on supplements is Examine.com, following the link to the research studies done on ACV reveals only a handful of studies in each category.

When it comes to Apple Cider Vinegar and the keto diet, consider this analogy: getting enough rest/sleep and proper hygiene in relation to general health… there is ample data to conclude that both getting enough sleep and practicing proper hygiene is beneficial to your health, combined they may not have an exponential effect on your health, but that shouldn’t stop you from doing both.

There may not be enough data to conclude that ACV combined with the keto diet will yield significantly enhanced benefits, there are enough benefits in relation to weight loss and overall health with each to merit their implementation individually.

Keto Bandeeto

26 thoughts on “Apple Cider Vinegar and the Keto Diet”

  1. Thanks for your honest analysis. I’m happy to know that ACV may prevent our blood sugar level spikes after a high carb meal. The cheat tips that you provide us are just what we want during our hard time on diet. Thanks.

    1. Gary,
      Thanks for the kind words and comments. Apple Cider Vinegar is one of those items that most of us have hidden in the back of the least used cupboard with long-forgotten benefits and uses… what was old is new again!
      Bob

  2. Thank you for this wonderful article about Apple Cider Vinegar, it reminds me of my mother, who used it for everything (at least vinegar any way). She was a nurse, so you would think that she would have more modern medicines, but her mom taught her, and her mom taught her and so on and so on.

    However I never knew that ACV, could be used as a contributor to weight loss, I love the studies of the 39 participants and the 250 calorie loss they had from a teaspoon of ACV. I did enjoy the video and I am not on a keto diet and I am also over 40, so this post really helped me understand as well as your post about ACV and a keto diet.

    1. Good stuff…. moms are the best! Thanks for sharing a little about your mom. A funny thought occurred to me a few weeks back when I was researching for a post on intermittent fasting. My mom would give me grief if I ate snacks before dinner… “you’ll ruin your appetite!” or if when we would late-night snack. I would respond with the typical eye-roll… now it’s called intermittent fasting… a fancy name for stuff my mom would tell me to do all the time!

      Thanks for commenting!

      Bob

  3. I have always heard so many good things about apple cider vinegar. I should buy it next time I go shopping. Your article is very informative and has just convinced me that apple cider vinegar should be a staple in my kitchen cabinet. I did not know that you should take it diluted with water, since the vinegar’s high acidity could damage tooth enamel. That’s good to know. It would be hard to drink straight anyway, the flavor is too strong … 

    So far, I have used vinegar in some baking recipes. I like the idea of adding apple cider vinegar to stir fried vegetables, that will add indeed a nice flavor. I will do that next time I make a stir fry. 

    Great information, thank you for sharing!

    1. Christine… definitely add a tablespoon or two to your next vegetable stir fry, I made one last night with a bunch of herbs and spices and the ACV added a little kick to the flavor… I definitely tasted it, but it was not overpowering or distasteful at all… thanks for reading and commenting

  4. Life Hacks is usually a source of news and information, of one sort or another, but combining Apple Cider Vinegar and Keto is one I hadn’t see yet.  For me, when I start trying to combine diets, I get off track.  I have wondered is it is because the diets are usually constructed to give you the best possible results when using the diet plan.  

    When you deviate and add or subtract things, that is when it quits working.  Or is this an incorrect theory? Our health is so important, and nowadays I read a lot of information that makes me wonder about diet plans and supplement. I think that you can have strange eating plans when you are young.  When you get closer to retirement age, you have to be careful with blood sugar levels and dietary needs.  Keeping a good healthy eating plan will ensure more energy and stamina.  Thank you for your information about the Keto diet, about adding Apple Cider Vinegar, and how to use the plans.  

    1. Sami,

      I’m with you on health… I wish that I would have been more health-conscious in my youth. If there is one thing that I’ve come to learn is… Don’t be afraid to combine strategies. Your body is unique, as much as we would all like to have one set of rules for weight loss, everyone is different. Embrace different strategies and methods, take the time to test and measure results and determine what things work for Sami and what doesn’t. I’ve tried to live this way since getting older and besides discovering what works and what doesn’t in terms of weight loss, I’ve gained a greater appreciation of my overall health and what I need to do in order to support a healthy lifestyle

      Bob

  5. As I read your post with interest (as a type 2 diabetic I am very interested in Keto and anything that can help make my life easier) I was thinking about the apple cider vinegar and if there is any way to make it taste less nasty?

    I have tried drinking it in many forms, but it is so gross and strong tasting that I can barely choke it down. I have diluted it and used a water chaser after every sip, but it still nearly gags me!

    I will be checking out the recipes link you provided! 

    Here’s to better health and weight loss!

    1. Karin,

      I’m right there with you… the taste is brutal. Hidden in a vegetable stir fry mixed with other flavors from herbs and spices make your meal flavorful. I’ve tried the recipes in the videos and I’m like you… I can barely choke that stuff down.

      Thanks for the kind words and comments!

      Bob

  6. Apple Cider Vinegar is one of those ingredients that shows up in health-related articles quite often. It’s great to learn more about it and how it may affect someone who is on the keto diet (or considering the keto diet).

    Unfortunately, it’s just not a taste that works for me. Cooking with it (in very small amounts) could be a way to slowly introduce. Thanks for the recipes.

    1. Aly,

      I’m right there with you… the taste is brutal. Hidden in a vegetable stir fry mixed with other flavors from herbs and spices make your meal flavorful. Mixed with water and lemon or lime with Stevia…brutal

      Thanks for reading and commenting!

      Bob

  7. I did not know about many of the benefits of adding apple cider vinegar to my diet. I love the idea of using it for salad dressing. Usually, I use olive oil and wine vinegar, so thanks for the suggestion, I could easily replace my wine vinegar by apple cider vinegar.

    Would it be a good idea for a person with diabetes to add the apple cider vinegar to their diet to lower their glucose?

    Finally, where is the best place to buy apple cider vinegar, do you have any suggestions?

    Thanks,

    1. Sonia,

      Thanks for reading and commenting. ACV and red wine vinegar are very similar in terms of nutritional value. There is more research on ACV to support it’s health benefits. It comes down to taste and cost… ACV is really affordable and you can get it at your local grocery store. Here’s a link to buy online if your local grocer doesn’t carry it. Braggs Apple Cider Vinegar

      Bob

  8. Hello, i am.currently on keto diet which  i must say is really very amazing and does have so many benefits to human body. But I wasn’t actually sure if adding Apple Cider Vinegar was a nice choice. Now I know better.. It does have so many benefits. Anyways a big thanks to you for sharing this insightful and educational post.

    1. How long have you been on the keto diet? What was your goal for starting the keto diet and how much have you lost? 

      Bob

  9. Helooo there, keto diet is one of the benefiting diet I have tried out so far, it does yield great results and benefits to human health. Anyways it has helped reduce a lot and keep fit, I have basically been considering if is really okay to have apple cider while on keto diet. Anyways I must say that I have learnt a great toon of information from in here regarding this. Now I have more understanding on it, adding  apple cider vinegar while on keto diet does have benefits… 

  10. Thanks for your post the structure of your website is easy to read and has a great flow to be very true I had no much knowledge about apple cider  vinegar and keto diet anyway I am so glad I am seeing and reading this article i have really learnt a lot, I also came to know that ACV may may prevent our blood sugar level spikes after a high meal I really appreciate your tips 

    1. Thanks Jose for reading and commenting. The magic of the internet and blogs like this are that you can literally learn something new every day. GLad you got some value from this post

      Bob

  11. I am familiar with the benefits of ACV in ones diet. I have tried drinking it diluted with water and it gave me such heartburn. A friend of mine drinks it also with water and has no problems and even says it doesn’t taste bad to her. When I drank it I thought how could anyone drink it like that. Yuk! So I definitely agree with you it should be mixed in with food such as the oil and vinegar dressing you mention. It really is good for you though.
    Great article!

    1. Teresa,
      ACV is somewhat of an acquired taste. I can barely stomach ACV in water, while others have no problem. I drink kombucha which tastes fine to me, but my kids tell me it tastes like vinegar, which I don’t get at all.
      Thanks for commenting!
      Bob

  12. A really great thorough review on the effects of apple cider vinegar, it doesn’t really sound like theres all that much to be gained whilst on a keto diet unless you fancy cheat days which lets face it we all do so it could be good for then which is good to know,
    Thanks for this.

    1. It doesn’t look like there is a significant benefit to combining keto and ACV, but independently there is plenty of reason to try each of them.
      Thanks for reading and commenting!

      Bob

  13. Wow! This is an amazing article that you have got here. I love your take on apple cider vinegar. I still don’t consider the apple cider vinegar as harmful so long it has passed through a process of fermentation, that you said has reduce all risk that could be attributed to it. Apple is a very good fruit for consumption hence, any thing produce off apple should be okay.

    1. Thanks for reading and commenting. ACV is pretty amazing, especially when you consider that the ancient Greeks were using this as a remedy thousands of years ago!

      Bob

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