Apple Cider Vinegar Improves Diabetes

Apple Cider Vinegar Improves Diabetes

Apple cider vinegar is truly a multi-purpose potion that can be used for many different ailments. Even though it’s a “traditional remedy”, recent clinical research has demonstrated its benefits from a scientific standpoint. Let’s take a closer look at the benefits for diabetics.

In one of the first studies on apple cider vinegar and blood sugar control, researchers found that consuming 4 teaspoons of vinegar two minutes before a carbohydrate-rich meal dampened post-meal blood sugar levels in insulin resistant people and those with type 2 diabetes. In other words, vinegar reduced the glycemic index (GI) of the meal, because GI is a measure of how much blood sugar increases after eating.

Dr. Johnston said, “scientific studies over the past 10 years show benefits from vinegar consumption. It’s inexpensive and can be easily incorporated into the diet. Used in combination with diet and exercise, it can help many people with type 2 diabetes.”

In a subsequent study by the same researchers at the Arizona State University, eleven type 2 diabetics were assigned to consume 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar before bedtime. This reduced blood sugar by 4-6% in the morning.

The same researchers also found that eating 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar daily for 12 weeks reduced HbA1c, the measure of long-term blood sugar control, in type 2 diabetics.

A study published 2010 in the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition found that adding 4 teaspoons of vinegar to a high-glycemic index meal, i.e. foods that raise blood sugar a lot, reduced post-meal blood sugar levels by 42%, compared to the same meal without vinegar. Again, you can say that vinegar reduced the glycemic index.

In type 1 diabetics, 2 tablespoons of vinegar 5 minutes before a high-carbohydrate meal reduced post-meal blood sugar levels by 20%, compared to the same meal with water. As above, vinegar reduced the meal’s glycemic index.

Other studies in healthy as well as type 2 diabetics demonstrated that adding as little as 2 teaspoons of vinegar reduces the glycemic index of carbohydrates.

How does apple cider vinegar reduce blood sugar?

A recent study, conducted in Greece and published 2015, demonstrated that vinegar increases insulin sensitivity (a good thing). Eleven type 2 diabetics consumed vinegar (2 tablespoons), or water, five minutes before a meal. After vinegar, muscles were more effective at taking up glucose (blood sugar), which resulted in lower post-meal blood sugar.

Apple cider vinegar also works by reducing the activity of various carbohydrate-digesting enzymes, as found by researchers at Tokyo University, Japan. Apparently, the acetic acid in the apple cider vinegar inhibits enzymes such as sucrase, mastase, lactase and amalase, resulting in some carbs remaining undigested, which dampens their impact on blood sugar levels.

Apple vinegar reduces body weight and blood pressure

In a study conducted in Japan, 155 overweight volunteers were assigned to consume one, two or zero (placebo) tablespoons of apple vinegar dissolved in water, every day for 12 weeks. Both the vinegar groups lost more weight than the no-vinegar group. The effect was largest with 2 tbsp vinegar/day. Furthermore, vinegar reduced blood fats, while the high-dose vinegar group also had lower blood pressure after 12 weeks. Both vinegar groups lost significant amounts of the dangerous visceral fat, which is located around the internal organs. Interestingly, they were not instructed to lose weight, so the vinegar probably led to a lower voluntary food intake.

This is not surprising because adding vinegar to a bread-based meal has also been shown to increase satiety, i.e. reduced appetite/hunger.

 

Sources:

  1. http://care.diabetesjournals.org/content/27/1/281.long
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