Maybe it’s my German heritage, but I’m a sucker for tart or sour foods. While some of my German favorites – sauerkraut, mustard and bratwurst, pickled vegetables – aren’t always on the healthy side, one popular ingredient is: vinegar.
What is Vinegar, Anyway?
Vinegar is an acidic liquid which is processed from the fermentation of ethanol. This process yields the key ingredient acetic acid (ethanoic acid), which we’ll get to later.
There have been many health benefits ascribed to vinegar over the years, particularly apple cider vinegar. While it has often been considered a folk remedy with little evidence to back it up, in recent years its health benefits have been backed by scientific studies.
- A 2006 study found that acetic acid, the main component of vinegar, had a cholesterol-lowering benefit in a test group of rats. They saw significantly lower total cholesterol and triacylglycerol. High levels of triglycerides in the bloodstream have been linked to a higher risk of heart disease and stroke.
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I credit my German heritage for my love of lip-puckering sour foods. I like anything pickled, mustards, horseradish, and I love vinegar on salads.
Apple cider vinegar has long been a folk remedy for many ailments, many of which are unproven or have been disproved. But some studies have shown that it may help with diabetes and obesity.
Even your standard table vinegar that’s used on salads is showing signs of being a fat fighter. It appears to turn on genes that produce proteins that help the body break down fats, according to Japanese researchers. The research has also suggested that acetic acid, the main chemical in vinegar, can help control blood pressure and blood sugar levels.
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One of the hottest new trends in weight loss are detox diets. These cleanses are typically liquid-based and can help people shed unwanted pounds quickly. This is really just water weight and unless you stick to a healthy diet and exercise regimen after, you’ll likely see the weight return.
Hollywood stars have been using these detox cleanses to prepare themselves for red carpet events, and thanks to People Magazine, we’ve got an inside-look at how the likes of Beyonce and Gwyneth cleanse to lose weight.
Beyonce made the Master Cleanse diet a household name. She prepares this recipe with hot water, lemon juice, maple syrup and cayenne pepper and drinks only this for 10-14 days. After using the Master Cleanse (also known as the lemonade diet or the maple syrup diet) to lose 20 pounds for her Dreamgirls role, she told Ellen Degeneres “I was very hungry, therefore I was evil.”
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I know- you’ve got 101 diet tips being thrown at you everyday. So ten more couldn’t hurt, right? This list at People Magazine exposes the top ten ways stars are losing weight.
- Drink more water
- Eat more fish for the Omega-3 Fatty Acids
- Add a splash of apple cider vinegar
- Eat smaller meals all day long, instead of three big meals, like Katherine Heigl on the Five Factor Diet
- Cut out alcohol, or strictly limit it
- Go vegetarian, or just fill up your plate with plenty of brightly colored veggies
- A cup of green tea creates three healthy habits all at the same time, says Gwyneth Paltrow
- Quench your sweet tooth with sugar-free snacks
- Workout your brain and body with Budokon- a yoga/martial arts activity you can do with your Friends Jennifer Aniston and Courtney Cox
- Treat yourself to a spa day
Once you’ve included all of these healthy habits into your daily routine, check out how your weight compares to these fit-n-trim stars with the Celebrity BMI Calculator.