Apple cider vinegar has been widely used for centuries for its medicinal properties. It is known to have several health benefits, including aiding weight loss, reducing blood sugar levels, and improving heart health.
However, there has been a growing concern among health experts and nutritionists about the possible effects of apple cider vinegar on the good bacteria in our gut.
We will explore whether apple cider vinegar kills good gut bacteria and if it does, what are the potential consequences for our digestive health.
What is apple cider vinegar?
Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is a type of vinegar made from fermented apple juice. It has been used for centuries as a traditional remedy for a range of health conditions, including digestive issues.
Recent studies have suggested that ACV may be beneficial for gut bacteria in several ways.
Apple cider vinegar gut microbiome
The gut microbiome refers to the collection of microorganisms that live in our digestive system.
These microorganisms can include bacteria, viruses, and fungi, and they play an important role in our overall health by aiding digestion, supporting our immune system, and even influencing our mood and behavior.
Studies have shown that consuming apple cider vinegar (ACV) can have both positive and negative effects on the gut microbiome.
One on hand, ACV has been shown to have antimicrobial properties that can help to kill harmful bacteria in the gut and can also be acidic and irritate the digestive tract in some people leading to an imbalance in the microbiome.
That being said, the effects of ACV on the gut microbiome are not yet fully understood.
Does apple cider vinegar kill good gut bacteria?
There is no conclusive evidence to suggest that apple cider vinegar kills beneficial bacteria in the gut.
In fact, some studies suggest that ACV may even have prebiotic effects which means it can promote the growth of beneficial bacteria in the gut which allows it to grow and in turn subdues the bad bacteria.
While others suggest that it may have a negative impact on the overall diversity and balance of the gut microbiota.
A study found that ACV had antibacterial effects on several strains of harmful bacteria including Escherichia coli and Salmonella typhimurium while leaving beneficial bacteria such as Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium relatively unaffected.
Another study published in 2018 found that ACV reduced the overall diversity of the gut microbiota in rats.
The researchers observed a decrease in the abundance of several beneficial bacteria including Lactobacillus while harmful bacteria such as Enterococcus and Staphylococcus increased.
The study concluded that regular consumption of ACV could lead to dysbiosis, an imbalance in the gut microbiota that is associated with several health problems.
In another study, the effects of ACV on the gut microbiota in people with obesity were investigated.
The study found that daily consumption of ACV for 12 weeks increased the abundance of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium while reducing the abundance of Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium while reducing the abundance of Clostridium histolyticum.
Is apple cider vinegar probiotic or prebiotic?
Apple cider vinegar despite being produced through fermentation is generally not considered to be a probiotic or a prebiotic.
This is because it does not contain significant amounts of live bacteria or indigestible fibers that promote the growth of beneficial gut bacteria.
Some studies suggest that apple cider vinegar may have prebiotic-like effects by stimulating the growth of certain beneficial gut bacteria.
More research is needed to fully understand the potential prebiotic effects of apple cider vinegar.
Can I take apple cider vinegar and probiotics together?
Yes, it is safe to take apple cider vinegar and probiotics together.
Taking apple cider vinegar and probiotics together may actually have a synergistic effect since the vinegar can help create an environment in the gut that is more favorable for the growth and survival of probiotic bacteria.
Apple cider vinegar prebiotic benefits
- Pectin fiber found in fermented apples is used to make apple cider vinegar and it can help clear away excess cholesterol in the gut.
- ACV can also help with blood sugar control and may have antioxidant and anti-inflammatory properties.
- ACV contains acetic acid that can stimulate the growth of certain probiotic bacteria.
How to take apple cider vinegar for gut health
- Look for organic, unfiltered, and unpasteurized apple cider vinegar with the “mother.” The “mother” contains beneficial enzymes and probiotics that can support gut health.
- Never consume undiluted apple cider vinegar, as it is highly acidic and can be harsh on your teeth and stomach lining. Mix one to two tablespoons of ACV with a large glass of water.
- If you’re new to ACV, begin with a lower dosage, such as one teaspoon diluted in water, and gradually increase it over time. Some people may experience digestive discomfort, especially when starting with a higher dose.
- It’s typically recommended to take ACV before meals. This may help improve digestion by increasing stomach acid production, which can aid in breaking down food.
- To protect your tooth enamel, consider sipping the ACV-water mixture through a straw. Rinse your mouth with plain water afterward to minimize potential acid exposure to your teeth.
- Pay attention to how your body reacts to ACV. Some individuals may experience improved digestion and reduced bloating, while others may not notice significant changes or could experience discomfort. Adjust the dosage accordingly.
- To potentially experience the benefits of ACV for gut health, consider making it a part of your daily routine. Consistency can help maintain a healthy gut environment.
- While ACV may support gut health, it’s essential to complement it with a well-balanced diet rich in fiber, prebiotics, and probiotics. These dietary components also play a crucial role in maintaining a healthy gut microbiome.
- If you have underlying gastrointestinal issues or are taking medications, consult with a healthcare professional before adding ACV to your routine. It’s important to ensure that it won’t interact negatively with your current health condition or medication.
- Everyone’s body is different, and what works for one person may not work the same way for another. Pay attention to how your body responds to ACV, and if you experience any adverse effects, discontinue use.
Will apple cider vinegar kill bad gut bacteria?
In conjunction with the cited studies above,
A study titled “Antibacterial apple cider vinegar eradicates methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and resistant Escherichia coli” found that ACV could be a powerful antimicrobial agent against MRSA and E. coli and calls for further research into its efficacy.
According to the study, ACV inhibited antibiotic-resistant MRSA and E. coli hence the inhibitory effect of ACV is comparable to that of traditional antibiotics used to treat these infections.
ACV was found to affect key proteins involved in bacterial growth and reproduction, including ribosomal proteins, ATP synthase, enolase, and phosphoenol pyruvate.
In another study, ACV was shown to have anti-inflammatory and antimicrobial effects on non-resistant strains of E. coli, S. aureus, and C. albicans.
Is apple cider vinegar good for gut bacteria?
First, ACV contains acetic acid, which is known to have antimicrobial properties. Studies have found that acetic acid can help inhibit the growth of harmful bacteria in the gut while promoting the growth of beneficial bacteria.
This can help to rebalance the gut microbiome, which is essential for maintaining good digestive health.
Second, ACV has been shown to improve digestion by increasing the production of digestive enzymes. This can help to break down food more effectively, reducing the risk of digestive issues such as bloating, gas, and indigestion.
When to drink apple cider vinegar for bloating
Drinking apple cider vinegar may help to reduce bloating by promoting digestion and reducing inflammation in the gut.
Here are some tips for when to drink ACV for bloating:
- Before meals: Drinking ACV before meals can help to stimulate the production of digestive enzymes, which can aid in the breakdown of food. This can help to reduce bloating and other digestive issues.
- After meals: Drinking ACV after meals may help to reduce bloating by promoting the release of stomach acid, which can help to break down food more effectively.
- In the morning: Drinking ACV in the morning on an empty stomach may help to reduce bloating by stimulating digestion and promoting the elimination of waste.
Is Braggs apple cider vinegar a probiotic
Braggs apple cider vinegar is a popular brand of apple cider vinegar that is often touted for its health benefits but it doesn’t contain the same types of probiotics that are found in probiotic supplements.
Braggs apple cider vinegar is not a probiotic and it is not a substitute for probiotic supplements.
Does apple cider vinegar help digestion after meals
Consuming apple cider vinegar after a meal could potentially aid in digestion and some people with low stomach acidity may find that using ACV helps raise stomach acid levels because of its acetic content which can aid digestion.
ACV should be consumed in moderation, as excessive consumption can lead to negative side effects.
It is always a good idea to talk to your healthcare provider before starting any new supplements to ensure they are safe and appropriate for you.
Last Updated on May 24, 2023 by Our Editorial Team