The benefits of apple cider vinegar are endless. It has been reported to help with everything from skin conditions to curing allergies. Research has shown that adding apple cider vinegar to your diet may also help manage your diabetes.
What is it about apple cider vinegar that makes it so special? It comes down to the amount of nutrients it contains, vitamins, minerals, amino acids and beneficial enzymes.
Vinegar is an acetic acid, which may increase your body’s absorption of important minerals from the food you eat. One theory suggests that vinegar inactivates the digestive enzymes that break down carbohydrates into sugar, thus slowing the absorption of sugar from a meal into your bloodstream and preventing sugar levels from spiking.
Here are four ways that apple cider vinegar may help manage your diabetes:
1- Improve insulin sensitivity after a high carb meal. A study in the Diabetes Care Journal revealed that when subjects consumed apple cider vinegar diluted with water and teaspoon of saccharine, two minutes before a test meal of a white bagel, butter and orange juice, that there was a decrease in both fasting and postprandial (after-meal) glucose levels.
2- Moderate waking glucose levels. Taking two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar along with one ounce of cheese before bed led to a 4 to 6 percent decrease in fasting blood sugar levels, said a study from 2007 in the Diabetes Care Journal.
3- Decrease high blood pressure. An article from Livestrong recommends one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar twice daily to decrease high blood pressure. Apple cider vinegar contains potassium, which may assist your body in balancing sodium levels, thus reducing hypertension.
4- Help weight loss. During the study mentioned above, researchers noticed that those who ate a tablespoon of vinegar before lunch and dinner lost an average of 2 pounds over the course of the study.
Because taking a teaspoon or more of vinegar at a time can cause acid reflux, the studies suggest diluting it in water or making oil and vinegar dressing that can be drizzled over a salads or cooked vegetables.
There are hundreds of recipes that can help you integrate apple cider vinegar into your daily routine. Some great ones from here at Diabetic Connect include Kale with Apples and Mustard Salad and Red Pepper Vinaigrette.
When buying apple cider vinegar for medicinal benefits, look for unpasteurized, cold-pressed and organic on the label. The vinegar should be murky and brown, not clear. Other varieties that have been pasteurized and filtered and won’t contain the same nutritional properties. As always consult your physician before making any changes to your diet.