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Does Citric Acid Burn Fat?

By Heather Topham Wood

Citric acid naturally occurs in fruits and gives foods an acidic taste. Citric acid is considered an antioxidant and can be used to protect against free radicals and increase the rate of metabolizing fat in the body. Before using citric acid to burn fat and lose weight, speak to your doctor. He is likely to recommend more traditional methods such as regular exercise sessions and dietary changes.

Types

Citrus fruits contain the highest amounts of citric acid. Lemons and limes contain the most citric acid of all fruits and vegetables. Citric acid is also used as a food additive to improve the acidity of wine, soft drinks, beer and cheeses. Citric acid is also available as a supplement and instructed to be consumed after meals.

Expert Insight

Fruits high in citric acid also contain high amounts of vitamin C. Vitamin C has been shown to be effective for burning fat during exercise. According to a June 2005 study published in “Journal of the American College of Nutrition,” researchers found that individuals with adequate vitamin C intake burned fat at a rate of 30 percent higher during exercise than those with low amounts of vitamin C in their diet.

Effects

Citric acid acts as an antioxidant, which can be helpful in increasing the amount of fat burned. Antioxidants fight against damage caused by free radicals, including damage to fat stores and muscles. Antioxidant recommendations from the Alabama Cooperative Extension System are 200 to 1,000 mg daily from vitamin C sources, including citrus fruits.

Warning

Do not take citric acid if you suffer from certain medical conditions. Patients with heart disease, kidney disease, adrenal gland disorders, electrolyte imbalances or esophageal problems should avoid citric acid supplements. Potential side effects of citric acid supplementation include swelling, irregular heartbeat, muscle discomfort, mood changes and gastrointestinal disorders.

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