What is the Connection Between Vinegar and Diabetes?

Sarah Sullins

Vinegar and diabetes are connected, in that vinegar has been shown to slow the rise in glucose levels after a meal has been eaten. It is usually taken before a meal, whether it be in the form of food or drink, and then the meal is eaten. In some studies, it was shown that the vinegar helped to reduce the blood sugar level of a person by lowering food’s glycemic index.

A person with diabetes checking her blood glucose levels.
A person with diabetes checking her blood glucose levels.

In a normal body, the pancreas produces insulin regularly, which helps to process the sugar consumed. It then distributes the correct amount of sugar to each of the body’s cells. With diabetes, though, insulin is produced slowly or not at all.

Apple cider vinegar.
Apple cider vinegar.

The glycemic index of food determines how quickly carbohydrates are turned into sugars. By slowing down and reducing the glycemic index with vinegar, the converted sugar does not enter the body as quickly. This, in turn, lowers the blood sugar level in a person over a period of time. For those people whose pancreases produce insulin, but produce it slowly, this period of time can allow insulin to be produced and begin working.

Balsamic vinegar.
Balsamic vinegar.

Although there is this positive connection between vinegar and diabetes, vinegar has a bitter taste, so it people typically add it to drink or to eat foods that already have the correct amount of vinegar in them, rather than drink it alone. Certain foods, like pickles and some salad dressings, have vinegar in them and can be eaten with a meal to help reduce the level of blood sugar afterward. Combining a few tablespoons of apple cider vinegar with a glass of water or another drink may, however, make it easier to get the vinegar a person needs.

Another connection between vinegar and diabetes is that weight loss may arise from using it. In many cases, especially with type 2 diabetes, weight can be responsible for the onset of the disease. Vinegar has been known to control a person’s appetite. For this reason, it may help with gradual weight loss, which may help to control diabetes.

Vinegar is just one alternative for the treatment of diabetes. Consuming vinegar does not necessarily mean that a person will be able to reduce the amount of insulin he is taking. The connection between vinegar and diabetes also does not mean that he can take vinegar and his diabetes will be fully controlled. According to studies, the vinegar used before meals is helpful only at slowing down, and reducing, blood sugar levels. People should consult a doctor before beginning any at-home treatments for this disease or any other.

Red and white vinegar.
Red and white vinegar.

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