Over the years, much has been written about vinegar and its numerous proposed health benefits. Vinegar as a weight-loss aid was reported as early as the 1820s, and more recently, it has received attention for its possible role in lowering blood glucose levels.

Vinegar is derived from beer or wine—or, as in the case of apple cider vinegar (ACV), from cider—and is a result of bacterial fermentation that produces acetic acid.

Contrary to the popular perception that ingesting ACV on a regular basis provides health benefits, there seems to be little scientific evidence in favour of the alleged health benefits of apple cider vinegar (see illustration). Furthermore – although ACV is considered safe when consumed in reasonable amounts – ACV in large amounts or when used on a longer-term basis, either alone or in combination with some medications, can cause health issues.

Is there Any Basis for the Alleged Health Benefits?

Let us have a look at some of the health benefits people usually associate ACV with and whether there indeed any proof of the benefits of ingesting ACV.

  1. BOOSTS METABOLISM: Nope! Absolutely no evidence at all to support this claim
  2. LOWERS SUGAR LEVELS: ONLY in specific circumstances it does so. Also, ‘there is a lack of evidence at this time to recommend vinegar as an adjuvant treatment for diabetes (Kohn 2015)
  3. DETOXIFIES: Well-known bullshit! If your detox-filter organs (liver & kidneys) weren’t working, you’d know…
  4. CURES CANCER: Total bullshit! Acidic-alkaline lie! No evidence to support this…
  5. AIDS DENTAL HEALTH: WTF! Vinegar dissolves enamel. And, in any case, your mouth does not need sterilisation!
  6. AND THE ‘MOTHER’? Bacterial cellulose & acid-producing bacteria, no known benefits!

acv_scamAny Downsides to Ingesting ACV?

Yes, there are! As opposed to the general perception of ACV being healthy, adverse effects have been reported with apple cider vinegar tablets, and with vinegar ingested daily for several years. The risk of hypoglycaemia (decreased blood sugar) or hypokalaemia (reduced potassium which can be potentially life-threatening) with long-term oral use, alone or when used concomitantly with (some) prescription / over-the-counter medications and herbal supplements, is a concern.


Stop wasting your money on ACV, it won’t do you any good. In fact, it may cause harm!

For more evidence-based, no-nonsense health advice, feel free to follow me on Instagram or Facebook.


Kohn, Jill Balla. 2015. “Is Vinegar an Effective Treatment for Glycemic Control or Weight Loss?” Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics 115 (7): 1188. doi:10.1016/j.jand.2015.05.010.


‘When the dust settles, when the admirers have left, you will have known, that it was always about ageing well, not just about how pretty you were, when young…

Step back, have a look and never lose sight of the bigger picture! …work towards ageing well!’

– Dr. Deepak S. Hiwale


For more health and fitness quotes from me, feel free to CONNECT WITH ME on Good Reads:

Himalayan pink salt or iodised table salt, which one should you be using? Let’s have a look.

Watch the YouTube Video.

Himalayan Rock (Pink) Salt

Is a type of rock salt mined in Pakistan. It is rich in calcium, potassium, magnesium; also contains trace amounts of zinc, lead, chromium and copper. These micro elements are the reason for the alleged health benefits of switching over to Himalayan salt. It, however, contains insignificant amounts (or lacks) of iodine.

Iodised-table Salt

Is a sodium salt (NaCl) fortified with iodine. It lacks the trace elements that pink salt is rich in, but you could very well do with the iodine – especially if you live in geographical areas that are endemic for hypothyroidism.

Take Home Message

info_pink_iodised_salt1.jpgSo, although it’s rich in minerals crucial for optimal health, switching over completely to Himalayan pink salt – because of lack of iodine in it – may undermine your thyroid health. This becomes doubly important if you happen to live in a geographic area endemic for hypothyroid goitre (the Indian subcontinent). Best strategy is to use equal portions of iodized table and Himalayan salt in your food; this will ensure sufficient amounts of both iodine and important other minerals.


For individualised fat-loss or metabolic diseases reversal lifestyle and nutrition packages, ageing-well and sports conditioning and nutrition, please feel free to get in touch with us. Please see below for services on offer.

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wadaOn 29th of September this year, the World Anti-doping Agency (WADA) made pubic the list of prohibited substances and methods for the year 2018. The List, which was approved by WADA’s Executive Committee on 24 September 2017, comes into force on 1 January 2018.

Feel free to download the list in PDF format (in English) HERE. To download in other languages, head over to this LINK.

The World Anti-doping Code can be downloaded HERE.


We at Conditioning Clinic, fully support WADA and its efforts in ‘cleaning up’ sports. However, we believe that WADA’s Code is inherently flawed. Here’s a BLOG POST (written in 2013, mind you… so much of the information may be outdated!) where I go into much details, and makes me want to stick my neck out and say that WADA’s ‘war on drugs’ (we are not talking about the traditional War on Drugs here) has been a failure.

PS: We do not recommend, advice or condone the use of banned substances and methods for performance enhancement in sports. Also, see our DISCLAIMER.


DENNIS LILLEY (Australia) 08/1975 CricketerDennis Keith Lillee: arguably, one of the best fast bowlers of all time! Quick, aggressive and dead accurate, he could intimidate batsmen not just by sheer pace but by his guile with the ball too! Along with Jeff Thomson, Dennis formed, perhaps, the most feared fast-bowling pair of all time!

But Dennis wasn’t just a great fast bowler; he was a ‘thinking cricketer’ as well. When he broke down in the West Indies in 1973 and was subsequently diagnosed with lumbar stress fracture, most cricket pundits around the world thought his fast bowling days were numbered. Lillee – the fighter that he was – wasn’t, however, ready to give up just yet!

Seeking help from exercise and sports medicine researchers from the University of Western Australia (chiefly Dr. Frank Pyke), Dennis went on a strength and conditioning program to get his back sorted.


Why – after almost 5 decades – are we talking about Dennis and his magical comeback from a career-threatening injury?! Pretty sure, there must have been other miraculous cases of comebacks. While that is true, you’ve got to remember that what Dennis and his researcher friends did almost 50 years ago was pioneering work. What’s more, given the fast pace of modern cricket and the short recovery time at the disposal of modern cricketers, the number of injuries that young fast bowlers are diagnosed with is staggering. And, lumbar stress fractures are the most debilitating of these injuries, typically resulting in 6–12 months of missed playing time (Mitchell R. L. Forrest et al., 2017).

This makes discussing Dennis’ case even more relevant today, than back in the day!


Here’s a little look at Dr Frank Pyke’s protocol for Dennis Lillee – it makes for fascinating reading – notice how the program doesn’t differ much in principle – from what you’d prescribe today. Having said, there are better fitness parameters and better conditioning tools at our disposal today. I’d definitely put in more Olympic lifts and plyometric moves than bench press and arm curls!


Baseline tests for monitoring progress were ordered; these were

  • Body weight
  • Body fat% using Skinfold method (Yuhasz, 1962)
  • Submaximal and maximal treadmill performance (Pyke, Elliott, Morton, & Roberts, 1974)
  • Arm, shoulder and wrist strength (Clarke, 1953)
  • Arm and shoulder power (Glencross, 1966)
  • Lower back and hamstring flexibility (Wells & Dillon, 1952)


Cardiovascular training

  • Initially 20 min. treadmill runs at 80% of maximal velocity
  • Interval training (treadmill) – 5 sec sprints and 15 seconds of walking

Strength Training

  • General strength improvement to start off with – bench press, dumbbell flys, incline sit ups were prescribed
  • Intensity gradually increased to 3 sets of 8 reps; less than a minute rest between sets
  • At the end of 9 weeks – explosive weight training initiated along with movement based exercises and patterns that mimicked bowling – by using a pulley system, bowling with a 10 Kg resistance and using a 2 Kg med ball

Flexibility training

  • Flexibility work for lower back and hamstrings (mainly) as prescribe by Holt, was undertaken (Holt, 1974)

lillee_case_study1Results of the Conditioning Program

In addition to the impressive changes in the fitness parameters shown above, Dennis’s performance in the comeback series against England was a great success.

In 1975, when he was clocked against some of the other fast bowlers in the world; Dennis was the second fastest of the group – only Jeff Thomson was quicker!


Fast bowlers and their ‘handlers’ need to realise that previous injuries are an important predictor for future injury. It makes even sense to design and implement a tailor-made strength and conditioning program for and improved biomechanics to prevent injuries in the first place.

An effective and tailor-made strength and conditioning program will:

  1. Help the athlete perform better,
  2. Prevent injuries, and
  3. Help the athlete recover better and in a shorter time


Clarke, H. H. (1953). Cable Tension Strength Tests. Springfield, Massachusetts: Brown-Murphy Co.

Forrest R L Mitchell et al (2017). Risk Factors for Non-Contact Injury in Adolescent Cricket Pace Bowlers: A Systematic Review. Sports Med., 2017

Glencross, D. J. (1966). The Power Lever: An Instrument for Measuring Power. Research Quarterly, 37, 202-210.

Holt, L. E. (1974). Scientific Stretching for Sport. Halifax: Holt.

Pyke, F. S., Elliott, B. C., Morton, A. R., & Roberts, A. D. (1974). Physiological adjustments to intensive interval treadmill training. British Journal of Sports Medicine, 8, 163-170.

Wells, K. F. & Dillon, E. G. (1952). The Sit and Reach – A Test of Leg and Back Flexibility. Research Quarterly, 23, 115-118.

Yuhasz, M. S. (1962). The Effects of Sports Training on Body Fat in Man with Predictions of Optimal Body Weight; Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation. University of Illinois.


Although it is common knowledge in research fields that calcium supplementation is a sticky subject, it hasn’t filtered through into the public domain. No wonder, there’s rampant blanket prescription and use of calcium tablets.

Here’s a brilliant example of how most orthopods will carry on prescribing drugs that have  subsequently been proven to be of limited benefit or even causing harm.


Calcium when consumed as tablets is not only of limited benefit but  also downright harmful (here’s my blog post where I cover this in detail).  And, yet doctors advocate calcium supplements. Let’s look at this blog post on osteoporosis from SANCHETI HOSPITALS, where the doctor – well qualified, experienced and reputed – is recommending calcium 1,200 mg per day!

Have a read!



Those of you all have who have been following my blogs, Instagram or Facebook posts will have realised that I am a big time advocate of getting much of your calcium and sunlight from natural sources. Calcium from food is not only effective but safe as houses too.


Doesn’t matter how reputed, experienced or well-qualified the doctor who prescribed you calcium tablets is, you need to stop taking them; rely instead on food sources.


I believe most doctors don’t do this on purpose – they are just too busy (or in some cases, lazy enough to keep up with latest in research). Having said that, they do owe it to their patients to keep in sync with latest in their respective fields. But then, let us not forget most doctors are doing a brilliant job, so let’s not be too critical of these minor issues.




Body-shaming – or fat-shaming – is a relatively new term; it means ‘the action or practice of humiliating someone by making mocking or critical comments about their body shape or size’ (Oxford Dictionaries).

Before we get into the nitty-gritty of what my opinion on the subject is, let have a look at some figures:


  1. In 2014, more than 1.9 billion adults, 18 years and older, were overweight. Of these, over 600 million were obese (WHO Obesity Fact Sheet, Updated Oct., 2017)
  2. Going by current trends, by 2025, 2.7 billion adults will be obese (World Obesity Day, 2017)
  3. At the end of the same year, 41 million children under the age of 5, were overweight or obese (WHO Obesity Fact Sheet, Update Oct., 2017)
  4. According to projections, 70 million kids in the pre-school age will be overweight by obese by the year 2025 (Commission on Ending Childhood Obesity (ECHO), WHO, 2017)
  5. ‘The annual global medical bill for treating the consequences of obesity is expected to reach US$1.2 trillion per year by 2025’ (World Obesity Day, 2017)


Compared with adults with normal weight, overweight-obesity are significantly associated with diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, asthma, arthritis, and poor health status. (Mokdad et al. 2003). Almost all modern non-communicable disease (NCDs), otherwise known as metabolic disorders (including cancer) are either associated with or show a strong causal relationship with obesity or overweight (Lumeng and Saltiel 2011).

Overweight-obese children and adolescents exhibit an earlier onset and raised risk of metabolic diseases such as type 2 diabetes, throughout life (Abarca-Gómez et al. 2017).


Having gotten all the technicalities out of the way; my point is that those who have worked in the field of obesity prevention and reversal will tell you that living a better and wholesome life involves being healthy and feeling good about oneself. Sorry to break your heart, but all of these things are connected. And, no matter what people say, you can’t feel good with a big belly. And for good reason – because obesity is a disease with all manner of inflammation (chronic, systemic) going on inside of you.

Given that being fat is sure to impact your life in a negative manner, I find it amusing that bloggers these days, instead of inspiring people to raise the proverbial bar (in effect, ‘body-shame’ themselves), tell people to ‘get comfortable in their own skin’. Statements like ‘you look great, the way you are’ or ‘it’s OK to be a plus size’ or ‘its OK to have a belly’, in support of people who have overweight-obesity-metabolic disease problems is like effectively supporting lifestyle diseases. Why would you do that? After all, you don’t support people having addictions or a criminal mindset, do you? You’d want them to change, wouldn’t you?

In my years of experience in the field of obesity, I’ve noticed that overweight-obese people tend to relax the moment they get some support from somewhere. And, that’s why I have a big problem with these ‘anti-body-shaming’ and ‘pro-plus-size model’ crusaders. Fair enough, it is wrong to body-shame others; I wouldn’t want people to body shame others. But I do believe, everyone should be incessantly body-shaming themselves (without being depressed about it, though). Not being happy with your own self, is the surest way to keep improving!

body shaming


More often, we are not critical enough of our own problems. Hell, if you look at the different stages of change, 80% of us rarely ever do anything about the problems we face in life – a whopping 40% of us don’t even realise there’s a problem, let alone institute changes!

Stages of Change


Being overweight or obese is not healthy. Don’t let anyone convince you otherwise, don’t let anyone tell you that it is OK to be a ‘plus size’ and never let anyone convince you it is OK to have a belly. Because, no it isn’t.

Weight, health-fitness, looks, being happy and excited about your own self and a productive, wholesome life are inherently interconnected.  Don’t wait till someone body-shames you (and even, if they do, take the criticism constructively); you should be body-shaming yourself. You should raise the bar high, and want the best for you.

PS: I wish, people – especially, the ones having a large fan-following – stopped spreading utter nonsense like ‘it’s OK to have a belly’. If you aren’t well-versed with the subject, please refrain from writing about it.

For enquiries on how to effectively treat-reverse or reduce the risk of overweight-obesity-metabolic diseases, please feel free to get in touch with me.

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Abarca-Gómez, Leandra, Ziad A Abdeen, Zargar Abdul Hamid, Niveen M Abu-Rmeileh, Benjamin Acosta-Cazares, Cecilia Acuin, Robert J Adams, et al. 2017. “Worldwide Trends in Body-Mass Index, Underweight, Overweight, and Obesity from 1975 to 2016: A Pooled Analysis of 2416 Population-Based Measurement Studies in 128·9 Million Children, Adolescents, and Adults.” The Lancet 0 (0): 1–16. doi:10.1016/S0140-6736(17)32129-3.

Lumeng, Carey N., and Alan R. Saltiel. 2011. “Inflammatory Links between Obesity and Metabolic Disease.” Journal of Clinical Investigation. doi:10.1172/JCI57132.

Mokdad, Ali H, Earl S Ford, Barbara A Bowman, William H Dietz, Frank Vinicor, Virginia S Bales, and James S Marks. 2003. “Prevalence of Obesity, Diabetes, and Obesity-Related Health Risk Factors, 2001.” JAMA : The Journal of the American Medical Association 289 (1): 76–79. doi:10.1001/jama.289.1.76.

WHO. 2011. “WHO Fact Sheet, Updated Oct., 2017.” WHO Fact Sheet, Updated October, 2017.

WHO. 2016. “Report of the Commission on Ending Childhood Obesity.” WHO. doi:ISBN 978 92 4 151006 6.