Proponents of natural healing celebrate apple cider vinegar as a healthy supplement, and as a natural treatment for weight loss, gastrointestinal issues and healthy skin. If you have diabetes, you may be particularly interested in recent research published by E. Östman et al. in the 'European Journal of Clinical Nutrition" in 2005. The article states that apple cider vinegar is able to lower glucose and insulin responses to carbohydrate-rich meals. Check with your physician before using apple cider vinegar if you have diabetes, as there may be harmful side effects or drug interactions.
Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar is a result of fermenting apples. The first step is fermenting to alcohol and then into acetic acid. Fermentation is made quicker using aeration. Pasteurizing processes remove bacteria. Vinegar is a folk remedy in use for centuries, with reports of Hippocrates using the remedy in the treatment of wounds. Vinegar is comprised of acetic acid, vitamins, minerals, amino acids, polyphenolic compounds and nonvolatile organic acids, such as citric and malic acid.
Lowering Blood Glucose
Several studies have now shown that acetic acid in vinegar lowers blood glucose levels. Carol S. Johnston, Ph.D., R.D. and Cindy A. Gaas, B.S. indicate in their 2006 article published in "Medscape General Medicine" that the antiglycemic properties of vinegar extend to individuals with marked insulin resistance or type 2 diabetes, making this a natural option in support of diabetic symptom management.
Lowering Body Fat and Triglycerides
A study completed by Tomoo Kondo, et al., published in the "Bioscience, Biotechnology, and Biochemistry Journal," reports positive results regarding apple cider vinegar in the suppression of body fat accumulation in obese people in Japan. The study reports significantly lower body weight, body mass index, visceral fat area, waist circumference, and serum triglyceride levels compared to those in a placebo group. Weight management is an essential component of management of blood glucose and insulin levels if you are living with diabetes.
Diabetics may reap the benefits of the other uses for apple cider vinegar unrelated to their diabetes symptoms. For example, you may find apple cider vinegar to be an effective treatment for acne when applied topically. Mix one-part vinegar with three-parts water and apply to the skin. Apple cider vinegar may also calm an upset stomach, aiding digestion.
Exercise caution when using apple cider vinegar as it may possibly interact with insulin. Always consult your physician prior to taking new supplements, especially as tablet forms do not necessarily provide consistency. In a study published in the "Journal of American Dietetic Association," J.J. Hill et al. reported significant variations in "tablet size, pH, component acid content, and label claims" among brands of apple cider vinegar. Apple cider vinegar may lead to decreased levels of potassium in the body.
- European Journal of Clinical Nutrition; Vinegar Supplementation Lowers Glucose and Insulin Responses and Increases Satiety After a Bread Meal in Healthy Subjects; E. Ostman et aI; 2005
- Medscape General Medicine; Vinegar: Medicinal Uses and Antiglycemic Effect; Carol S. Johnston, Ph.D., R.D. and Cindy A. Gaas, BS; 2006
- J of American Diet Association; Esophageal Injury by Apple Cider Vinegar; L.L. Hill et. al; 2005
- University of Maryland Medical Center: Diabetes Diet - Weight Control for Type 2 Diabetes
- Home Remedies Web: Signs and Symptoms of Acne
- Biosci, Biotech, and Biochem; Vinegar Intake Reduces Body Weight; Tomoo Kondo et al.; 2009