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Rodent of the Week: Vinegar as a fat fighter

June 26, 2009 |  2:00 pm

Rodent_of_the_week Salad is a staple in the diets of people trying to lose weight. But make sure your lettuce is doused with some vinegar. A new study suggests vinegar is good for your health and may even help burn fat.

Researchers in Japan fed laboratory mice a high-fat diet and gave them acetic acid -- the main component of vinegar. Those mice gained 10% less body fat compared with mice who weren't given acetic acid.

Vinegar has long been used in folk medicine, and other studies suggest it may have an impact on blood pressure, blood sugar levels and fat accumulation. The new study, from scientists at the Central Research Institute, Mizkan Group Corp., in Japan, suggests that acetic acid fights fat by turning on genes for fatty acid oxidation enzymes. These genes release proteins that help break down fat.

The study is published in the July 8 issue of Journal of Agricultural and Food Chemistry.

-- Shari Roan

Photo credit: Advanced Cell Technology Inc.