What are the Side Effects of drinking Apple Cider Vinegar?

Apple Cider Vinegar or ACV is usually safe for consumption, however, sometimes drinking too much of it can cause side effects. These include:

  • Delayed emptying of the stomach
  • Improper digestion
  • Bone loss and reduced Potassium levels
  • Tooth enamel erosion
  • Throat burn
  • Skin burn
  • Interactions with medicine

Apple Cider Vinegar Side Effects

These are the top 7 side effects caused by over-drinking Apple Cider Vinegar. Let’s discuss them in detail:

What are the side effects of drinking Apple Cider Vinegar?

Delayed emptying of the stomach

One of the main functions of Apple Cider Vinegar is to prevent blood sugar spikes in your body. This is done by delaying emptying of the stomach.

Therefore, the rate at which the food empties your stomach and enters your lower digestive tract is reduced. Hence, it gets absorbed into your bloodstream slowly.

This delayed stomach emptying worsens gastroparesis symptoms.

Apple Cider Vinegar and Gastroparesis

It is a very common condition found in people suffering from type 1 diabetes.

Gastroparesis affects the nerves of your stomach. It makes the food stay in your stomach for a long time and does not empty like a healthy person’s stomach.

The symptoms of gastroparesis are:

  • Nausea
  • Bloating
  • Heartburn
  • Vomiting

Type 1 diabetes patients who have gastroparesis have to time their insulin according to their meals because you never know how long the food will take to digest and absorb.

A study was carried out on 10 type 1 diabetes patients who also had gastroparesis.

In comparison to drinking plain water, when the patients drank 30 ml or 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar, it significantly delayed the process of food emptying their stomach.

If you do not have diabetes but you have gastroparesis then also keep in mind that drinking too much of apple cider vinegar will worsen your symptoms.

Bottom Line: Apple cider vinegar delays stomach emptying and worsens the symptoms of gastroparesis. This ultimately makes blood sugar management difficult for type 1 diabetes patients.

Note – ACV is made by fermenting process and various variety of apples are used in this process.

Improper digestion

Some people suffer from improper digestion or problems related to the digestive system due to an overdose of ACV.

Clinical studies carried out on humans and animals showed that Apple Cider Vinegar and acetic acid may reduce hunger and cravings. It also gives the feeling of fullness for a longer period of time. This naturally reduces the intake of calories.

However, one such study also revealed that in some cases the reason behind reduced appetite was indigestion.

The people who had 25 gms or 0.88oz of ACV experienced reduced hunger. However, they also reported having nausea.

Bottom Line: Drinking too much Apple Cider Vinegar may suppress appetite but also gives the feeling of nausea.

Bone loss and reduced Potassium levels

The fact is that no controlled studies have been carried out to know the effects of apple cider vinegar on the potassium levels of your blood and bone health.

However, one case was reported with low blood potassium levels and bone loss. This was caused by drinking large amounts of apple cider vinegar for a long time.

A woman, 28 years old, reported these side effects. She consumed apple cider vinegar (8 oz or 250 ml) on a daily basis for six years. Although, she diluted it with water and then drank it, still got the side effects.

Drink Apple Cider Vinegar Safely

She was admitted into the hospital where her blood work confirmed low potassium levels and other issues. In addition, she was diagnosed with osteoporosis. This is a condition caused by bone loss and it is very rare in young people.

The doctors who treated her believed that apple cider vinegar was responsible for her condition. The minerals from her bones were leaked out to balance the acidity in her blood caused by the vinegar.

The doctors also said that high levels of acid hinder with the overall health of the bones.

It is pretty obvious that most people do not drink such high doses of the vinegar every day, so the chances of these side effects are very less.

Bottom Line: Only one case has been reported of low potassium levels and bone loss by drinking heavy doses of this vinegar.

Tooth enamel erosion

It is a common known fact that acidic drinks and foods damage the tooth enamel.

Studies have been performed on soft drinks and juices and it was reported that drinking them too much can cause tooth enamel erosion.

However, some researches also showed that vinegar has a lot of acetic acid in it and drinking too much can cause issues with the tooth enamel.

In one lab research, the enamel from wisdom teeth was used to perform the test. It was immersed in different types of vinegar. These vinegar’s had pH levels from 2.7-3.95. After a few hours, the teeth lost 1-20% of their minerals.

Keep in mind that this research was done in a lab and not in the mouth. In the mouth, you have saliva that buffers the acidity. However, in a lab test that’s not possible.

In one case, a 15-year-old girl suffered severe tooth decay due to drinking 1 cup or 237 ml of apple cider vinegar (undiluted) every day. She was trying to lose weight quickly.

Bottom Line: Vinegar has acetic acid that causes erosion of tooth enamel.

Throat burn

Another potential side effect is the throat (esophageal) burns.

Apple Cider Vinegar Side Effects

In one case, some children accidentally drank harmful liquids and out of those liquids, the acetic acid present in the vinegar caused them throat burns.

Doctors recommended keeping vinegar out of reach of children as it can be a “potent caustic substance“.

However, there are no published cases whatsoever of throat burns caused by apple cider vinegar.

Bottom Line: Consuming foods and drinks that contain too much acetic acid may cause throat burns.

Skin Burn

The pH levels of your skin and apple cider vinegar are different. So, when you apply it directly on your skin, it can cause skin burns.

Many people use it as a natural toner or anti-inflammatory product but the fact is that it should never be applied to the skin directly. It should always be diluted and then applied. Otherwise, it can cause burns.

Keep in mind, that it has very strong acidic property.

In one case, a teenage girl applied apple cider vinegar on her nose to remove 2 moles but ended up getting skin erosions.

In another case, a mother of a 6-year-old boy applied ACV on her son’s leg to treat an infection naturally but it ended up with her son getting leg burns.

Many more such cases are reported online, where people applied this vinegar directly on their skin and it caused them burns.

Bottom Line: Never apply apple cider vinegar undiluted directly on your skin.

Interactions with medicine

Apple Cider Vinegar may interact with some medicines:

  • Those who take diabetes medicines may experience a drop in blood sugar to dangerously low levels.
  • People who take Digoxin (Lanoxin) may experience dangerously low levels of blood potassium.
  • Those who take diuretic drugs may also experience potassium loss because diuretic medicines excrete some amount of potassium out of the body.

Bottom Line: Some medicines and vinegar may interact with each other.

How to drink Apple Cider Vinegar safely?

You can drink apple cider vinegar safely by following these tips:

  • Start taking small amounts and gradually increase up to 2 tablespoons or 30 ml per day maximum. Do not go beyond this limit.
  • Always dilute it with water so that the acetic acid does not harm your teeth enamel.
  • Rinse your mouth with water after drinking it so that there no residue left in your mouth. Also, wait for at least 30 minutes before brushing.
  • It is not suitable for people with gastroparesis.
  • Keep a close look on allergic reactions. If you experience any kind of allergy or discomfort, stop taking it immediately.

Bottom Line: Limit your intake and always dilute it.

Here are some more frequently asked questions related to the side effects of acv:

Can Apple Cider Vinegar make you poop?

I am sure you are concerned whether drinking apple cider vinegar can make you have diarrhea or not. Well, the answer is Yes, but to a certain extent only. Basically, the apple content in this vinegar is responsible for making you poop. It contains high amounts of a soluble fiber known as pectin.

This means that you will have not have serious diarrhea for which you will need to contact your doctor, but you will have a more frequent bowel.

Actually, this is not bad because it helps in keeping your gut clean and when you have a healthy bowel, your overall health starts improving. Pectin also helps in improving your digestive system.

One major health problem that affects millions of people worldwide is constipation. ACV helps in relieving constipation so it works like a natural laxative.


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79 thoughts on “What are the Side Effects of drinking Apple Cider Vinegar?”

  1. Honestly I have not had any side effects at all with ACV and its been 4 months now since I have started taking it.

  2. I have been drinking acv for the last one week and I think I drink too much now after reading this article. Thanks I will drink it in moderation from now on.

    • Hi Jennie, thanks for your question but I am really sorry I cannot answer it because this article is only for general information purpose. I am not promoting any particular brands so I cannot mention any product names. My main focus is to help people improve their health.

  3. When it comes to enjoying the qualities of apple cider vinegar, as a general rule, the key is to take the apple cider vinegar fasting and on a daily basis . However, here are some tips to take it according to the main purpose.Fasting: is the best way to enjoy their qualities in a general way. It basically consists of taking 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar dissolved in a large glass of water. To improve digestive problems : it is best to take a spoonful of apple cider vinegar half an hour before each meal.To combat constipation : it is advisable to take 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar before going to bed.

    • Thanks for asking this question, I have answered it in the article above. If you have any more questions please ask and I will try and keep answering them in the article.

    • Dilute it with water, then it may taste a little less awful. Or you can mix it with your favorite fruit juice that can help mask the taste of acv.

  4. I don’t drink acv but I can say that it is just amazing for hair. I use it to rinse my hair after shampoo and it gives them super shine.

  5. thank you so much for detailing the side effects of apple cider vinegar. I drink it and my husband also drinks it but both of us do not like the taste so we just cannot drink too much… and now I know that we are doing the right thing by not drinking too much.

    • Yes, apple cider vinegar is bad for gastroparesis so you if you have the problem then please do not drink it or at least discuss with your physician if you want to drink it.

  6. Drinking apple vinegar was not easy for me because I just hate its taste so now I using it as an after hair-wash and it has made my hair shiny, so I like it!

    • Some do and some don’t. It really depends on the quality and the ingredients used in the pills. If the pills contain too many chemicals or they are not clinically tested or they are made of poor quality ingredients then there is a high possibility that they can cause side effects. So, if you are choosing pills then always make sure to choose the best brand and also check the ingredients list. Make sure it contains only natural ingredients.

  7. Can I drink apple cider vinegar before workout? or after? basically, I want to know what is the best time to drink it?

  8. I have been drinking cider vinegar for the last six months and I have not experienced any health benefits at all… I think it is an over-hyped product.

  9. I agree drinking too much apple cider vinegar causes side effects but why are you only targetting ACV? Don’t all vinegar’s give side effects if you drink them too much? Your opinion is one-sided in this article.

    • My opinion is not one-sided. This particular article is focused around ACV only and I have not mentioned anything at all related to any other type of vinegar. So, if I am talking only about apple cider vinegar obviously I will mention it’s side effects only. If I mention other vinegar’s also then this article will become off-topic. But anyways, thanks for pointing out your concern. I will do my research and try to post about the side effects of other kinds of vinegar also.

  10. Thanks for the information, I am planning to start drinking apple cider vinegar everyday so I was really concerned about its side effects but now I will make sure to drink very little amount daily.

  11. Some people here have commented that they hate apple cider vinegar’s taste, well I want to say that I have been drinking acv for so long that I really like it’s taste now ๐Ÿ™‚ Maybe you people should also be a little patient.

  12. I don’t drink apple cider vinegar but I dilute it with water and apply on my face daily. I has helped with my pigmentation a lot.

    • Reduce the amount you drink and also make sure to dilute the acv with water before drinking. Try this, if you still feel uncomfortable then stop drinking it.

  13. Gastroparesis is the issue that I have and that is why I wanted to know whether I can use apple vinegar or not? Thanks for clearly my doubt.

  14. The most important benefits of using apple cider vinegar are the effects that take place inside of the body. When added to your daily diet, its effects are pretty amazing. Let’s take a look at a few of these benefits: Improved Digestion and Weight Loss. ACV can help restore normal acid levels in your digestive system which helps break down fats and proteins. This allows your body to digest food easier and more thoroughly which promotes nutrient absorption by the body and overall health. Apple cider vinegar can also help you feel fuller which will help you eat less and take some of the strain off of your digestive system. A preliminary study performed in rats has shown that apple cider vinegar can significantly reduce cholesterol in the body. Since the study was performed on rats, some speculate that these properties may not be the same in humans. Further studies are needed to confirm but preliminary evidence is positive. A similar study also showed positive results for lowering of blood pressure and heart disease as well. Due to the low number of side effects and the evidence suggesting it may reduce overall risk factors for heart disease, a regular dose of apple cider vinegar might be good advice.

  15. There have been several studies that have been don around the subject of weight loss and apple cider vinegar. Part of what apple cider vinegar does to help with weight loss centers on diabetes and insulin resistance. Diabetes is when your body doesn’t produce enough insulin to deal with the sugar levels in your blood. There have been studies that suggest people who take a little bit of apple cider vinegar with their meals feel fuller faster. The apple cider vinegar diet calls for you to have 2-3 teaspoons of vinegar before every meal. It’s supposed to help you feel fuller faster. It’s also helps to regulate the time it takes for the glucose produced from your foods to reach your bloodstream. Having the release of blood sugar regulated means that your body won’t have to produce as much insulin. The less insulin that your body produces the less it triggers your body to start producing fat cells and storing fat. That will help you lose weight.

  16. Made my own ACV and have been drinking it at each meal before I eat. 2 tblspoons in a glass of water…no problems, no sore throat or anything like that. I lost 10 lbs but that did not come off overnite and no way would I want to lose weight that fast anyway. I’m in my early 60’s was diagnosed type 2 a couple of years back. I feel the ACV gives me more energy. My skin does not feel as leather as it used to. And minor cuts seem to heal faster for me.

  17. Having read this I believed it was rather informative on apple cider vinegar because I am planning to start taking it.

  18. well I can say that I have been drinking apple cider vinegar everyday since the last 5 months and I have not experienced any side effects till now.

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