Fad diets, fasts and bizarre food combinations believed to help you lose weight fast have been around as long as people have been looking for shortcuts. The honey, oil, vinegar combination is not new, and it’s also not healthy if that’s all you are taking in. Honey does contain some nutrients and natural sugars. Oil – usually olive oil – has heart-healthy benefits and laxative properties. Apple cider vinegar – which is usually recommended for weight loss – also has some benefits. But even combining them is not enough for healthy weight loss if you aren’t also eating a balanced diet.
There is no “official” honey, oil and vinegar diet. But the Internet is rampant with suggestions as to how mixing honey, olive oil and apple cider vinegar in water and drinking it several times a day before meals or in place of them can magically help you shed those extra pounds. By combining the sugars and nutrients in honey with the laxative effects of olive oil and the supposed “fat burning” properties of apple cider vinegar, this magic elixir is believed to simply melt away the fat.
Benefits of Honey
Honey contains over 180 different compounds, including amino acids, enzymes, minerals and vitamins. According to a 2005 study published on BioMed.com in 2006, studies on mice proved that honey has beneficial effects in protecting and restoring necessary intestinal bacteria in mice as well as combating the ill effects of mycotoxins, which are found in foods throughout the world. Mycotoxins occur when crops that are meant for humans or livestock are contaminated with certain molds and fungi. Honey is slower to metabolize than refined sugar, so using it instead of sugar can help you avoid the glucose spikes and insulin response that can lead to sugar cravings. But, while honey is higher in calories and nutrients than sugar, it doesn’t provide enough of either to be consumed instead of food.
Benefits of Olive Oil
The Harvard School of Public Health supports the idea of consuming plant-based oils rather than animal-based fats. Olive oil contains 77 percent monounsaturated fats which have been shown to lower the levels of LDLs and raise the levels of HDLs in your blood. LDLs are the “bad” cholesterols and HDLs, the “good.” Olive oil is fairly high in calories at 120 per tablespoon, but even added to the calories in honey and in apple cider vinegar, it is not enough to sustain your body throughout the day. If you are taking in honey, olive oil and vinegar in addition to meals, you have to watch how many calories you’re adding to each meal, because it only takes 3,500 more than you’re burning to create a pound of fat.
Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar
Regular, clear vinegar has been so processed that it only contains trace amounts of nutrients. Raw apple cider vinegar, according to Dr. Edward Group at Globalhealingcenter.com, is packed with healthy vitamins and minerals. Raw apple cider vinegar contains acetic acid, ash, calcium, malic acid, pectin and potassium. Acetic acid helps you avoid blood sugar spikes after eating, and ash helps balance the acid to alkaline levels in your body. Calcium and potassium support healthy bones, nails, hair and teeth. Malic acid is a known antibacterial, anti-fungal and antimicrobial agent, and pectin helps regulate your blood pressure. Apple cider vinegar, even when added to honey and olive oil, still does not provide enough calories or vitamins to sustain you.
It’s never a good idea to limit yourself to any kind of rigid fast for more than one day or so. Robbing your body of calories may provide a quick loss of water weight, but you will gain it back as soon as you start eating solid food, because you haven’t changed the habits and lifestyle that caused you to gain weight in the first place. It’s dangerous to deprive your body of the nutrients and fuel it needs to function properly. But, adding honey, olive oil and vinegar to an already healthy diet does have some benefits and will do you no harm as long as you watch your total calorie count.
- MayoClinic.com: Weight Loss Basics
- BioMedCentral.com: Effect of Dietary Honey on Intestinal Microflora and Toxicity of Mycotoxins in Mice
- OrganicFacts.net: Benefits of Honey in Weight Loss
- Harvard School of Public Health: Fats and Cholesterol - What Should You Eat?
- Ohio State University Extension: Chow Line: Chow Line: Olive Oil 'Good' Fat But High in Calories
- Global Healing Center: The Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar