Does vinegar really lower blood sugar? - Levels (2022)

Does vinegar really lower blood sugar?

Why would a shot of vinegar blunt the glucose spike from a carb-heavy meal? Here's what the research shows, and tips for working vinegar into your diet.

Eating a metabolically healthy diet isn’t just about eliminating foods that cause a blood sugar spike, it’s also about incorporating foods that can help aid glucose control. Vinegar is often cited as a food that can have a positive effect on blood sugar, but is it true?

The answer is a solid: probably. Several studies examine the effects of vinegar on glucose processing, and many show positive results. However, much of the research uses very small sample sizes—between 5 and 12 study participants.

(Video) Take Apple Cider Vinegar to Lower Blood Sugar Levels ❓

What’s more, the high-carb meals those study participants consume aren’t exactly typical—especially for people trying to eat healthily—often consisting of white bread and juice. How vinegar affects more complex carbs is hard to say. And the studies mostly focus on glucose processing and insulin sensitivity; there’s little evidence it affects weight loss.

Still, the evidence across several studies suggests that this may be more than folklore, so let’s look at the mechanisms involved and how you can take advantage of it in your own diet.

First, What Exactly is Vinegar?

At its most basic, this kitchen staple results from a two-step fermentation process that converts a carbohydrate (usually fruit, rice, potatoes, or whole grains) into alcohol, which is then fermented to vinegar. First, yeast feed on liquid sugar or starch, fermenting it into alcohol. When the alcohol is exposed to oxygen, naturally-occurring bacteria called Acetobacter create acetic acid—the stuff that gives vinegar its tart, sharp taste, and what’s likely at work when it comes to blunting a post-meal blood-sugar spike.

You’ll find many different types of vinegar at the grocery store, and the differences result from the kind of carbohydrate used to start the fermentation process. The most common varieties include:

  • White distilled vinegar comes from a grain alcohol similar to vodka, which gives it a neutral color and flavor profile.
  • Rice vinegar is made with fermented rice, this type of vinegar tends to have a milder, less acidic taste than the other varieties.
  • Balsamic vinegar is often thicker, darker, and sweeter than the others; it starts with fermented grapes.
  • Apple cider vinegar comes from the liquid of crushed apples and retains a faint apple flavor.
  • Wine vinegar can be either red and white, and the flavor depends on the type of wine used to make it.
  • Malt vinegar comes from fermenting unhopped beer; it displays the same nutty, caramel, sometimes lemony flavor profile as a malted ale.

So How Does Vinegar Impact Blood Sugar?

There isn’t a clear consensus on a precise mechanism behind vinegar’s effect on glucose, but there are a few research-backed theories:

(Video) Apple Cider Vinegar Really Has Amazing Benefits for Diabetics?

  • The acetic acid in vinegar slows down the rate at which the stomach empties the food you’ve eaten into the small intestine, which in turn slows the breakdown of carbohydrates and gives the body more time to remove glucose from the blood. This ultimately reduces the spike in blood sugar you’d typically see after eating. In one small study of 10 healthy, regular weight volunteers, researchers found that the ingestion of acetic acid as vinegar significantly reduced both blood glucose concentrations and insulin responses after a starchy meal. The study authors wrote: “The mechanism is probably a delayed gastric emptying rate.”
  • Vinegar may act on the body’s cells, increasing their ability to take in glucose, so there’s less of it circulating in the bloodstream. One group of researchers found increased glucose uptake in the forearm muscle cells of people with diabetes who had consumed vinegar compared to those who hadn’t. A study in rats found that balsamic vinegar improves the function of beta cells, which secrete insulin in response to glucose.
  • Vinegar may also work to balance blood sugar by interfering with disaccharidases—enzymes in the small intestine that break down carbohydrates, says Ashley Koff, RD, a Columbus, Ohio-based dietitian. Anything that acts “to block or subdue the capabilities of the enzymes that break down the carb [curbs the] rapid absorption of the carb as glucose,” says Koff, blunting the blood sugar rise you might typically see after eating.

Five Ways to Incorporate Vinegar into Your Meals

Have a vinegar-based salad dressing before you eat. This may be especially helpful if you’re planning on having a carbohydrate-rich meal. One study showed that when people consumed 1 ounce of white vinegar with a meal of bread containing 50 grams of carbohydrates, it lowered post-meal glucose spikes and insulin levels. (The researchers soaked the bread in vinegar to distribute its intake, but that may not be the most delicious way to go.)

Another study of healthy people found that eating 100 grams (about a cup and a half) of sliced lettuce dressed with olive oil and vinegar before consuming 50g of white bread carbs experienced significantly lower blood sugar compared to those who ate the same amount of salad dressed with olive oil but no vinegar.

Interestingly, the study authors also compared the vinegar group to a second vinegar group in which they added sodium bicarbonate to the vinegar to neutralize its pH. The scientists found that the neutralized vinegar did not affect blood sugar, suggesting that vinegar’s acidic nature plays a crucial role in its ability to modulate blood sugar.

Drizzle vinegar over steamed or roasted veggies. It turns out even a small amount of vinegar consumed with meals can help control blood sugar, too. One study found consuming two teaspoons of vinegar with carbs may reduce post-meal blood glucose levels as much as 20 percent. Bonus: the study also found that consuming vinegar with a high-carb meal also increases satiety.

Dilute four teaspoons of apple cider vinegar in water and drink right before you eat. In one study, participants consumed a buttered bagel with orange juice two minutes after drinking either 20 grams of apple cider vinegar or a placebo. When the researchers checked blood glucose levels at 30 and 60 minutes after the meal, they found significantly lower post-meal blood glucose levels in the apple cider vinegar group.

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Take six teaspoons of apple cider vinegar before bed. In one small but intriguing study, researchers looked at people with well-controlled Type 2 diabetes and found that drinking two tablespoons of ACV with an ounce of cheese before bed could positively impact blood sugar. Compared to study participants who had water and cheese at bedtime, those who downed the apple cider vinegar reduced their fasting blood sugar levels by up to 6 percent over two days.

Eat more fermented foods. They’re good for your gut and your blood glucose. When researchers in Sweden added fermented milk (a.k.a. yogurt) and pickles (cucumbers preserved in vinegar) to a breakfast of high-carb white bread, they found that the combination reduced blood sugar and insulin levels compared to study participants who just ate the bread. What’s more, the scientists found that adding regular milk and fresh cukes had little impact on blood sugar response.

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Any Downsides to Vinegar Consumption?

According to the American Dental Association, frequent consumption of foods and beverages with high acidity can damage tooth enamel. There’s also a chance you could experience some gastrointestinal woes: According to one study, people who drank vinegar with breakfast reported feeling nauseated. To combat these possible side effects, experts recommend diluting vinegar with water and using it as an ingredient in your meals rather than taking it as a shot.

(Video) Doctor talks about "Does Vinegar help lower Blood Sugar Spikes for People with Diabetes?"

FAQs

How long does it take for vinegar to lower blood sugar? ›

On a short-term basis, groups taking apple cider vinegar saw significant improvement in blood glucose levels 30 minutes after consuming the vinegar. However, the differences between the vinegar and control groups reduced after this time frame.

Does vinegar lower blood sugar quickly? ›

The acetic acid in vinegar slows down the rate at which the stomach empties the food you've eaten into the small intestine, which in turn slows the breakdown of carbohydrates and gives the body more time to remove glucose from the blood. This ultimately reduces the spike in blood sugar you'd typically see after eating.

Does vinegar help with high blood sugar? ›

Research published in the Journal of Diabetes Research suggests that vinegar helps people with type 2 diabetes use their insulin more effectively, improving post-meal blood sugar levels. Because it works to increase insulin sensitivity, vinegar could help prevent type 2 diabetes in high-risk individuals.

Does apple cider vinegar drop blood sugar levels? ›

Let's cut right to the chase: apple cider vinegar has shown to reduce blood sugar levels slightly in people with type 2 diabetes and type 1 diabetes, but the results aren't going to have a tremendous impact on your A1c from ACV alone.

How can I bring my blood sugar down in hurry? ›

When your blood sugar level gets too high — known as hyperglycemia or high blood glucose — the quickest way to reduce it is to take fast-acting insulin. Exercising is another fast, effective way to lower blood sugar. In some cases, you should go to the hospital instead of handling it at home.

What brings blood sugar down? ›

For people who are not prescribed insulin, exercise is your best option for bringing down high blood sugar levels. Other ways to reduce blood sugar levels quickly including taking missed medication, drinking lots of water, and using stress-management tools.

Is it OK to take 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar a day? ›

Apple cider vinegar is safe for the body in small doses (up to 2 tablespoons per day for adults), but taking large amounts is not recommended.

Is it better to drink apple cider vinegar in the morning or at night? ›

The fermented juice may slow down the emptying of your stomach and prevent spikes in the blood sugar level. ACV consumption has also been proven beneficial in increasing insulin sensitivity. Drinking that concoction particularly at night can be more beneficial than having it any other time of the day.

How long does it take cinnamon to lower blood sugar? ›

The addition of 1, 3, or 6 g of cinnamon to the diet led to significant decreases in serum glucose levels after 40 days.

What happens if you drink apple cider vinegar everyday? ›

While drinking apple cider vinegar is associated with health benefits, consuming large amounts (8 ounces or 237 ml) every day for many years can be dangerous and has been linked to low blood potassium levels and osteoporosis ( 20 ).

Is apple cider vinegar better than metformin? ›

However, no significant difference was obtained in the post-treatment comparisons of weight and Body Mass Index in between the two groups. Conclusion: Apple Cider Vinegar in combination with Metformin appears to be more effective in improving glycemic control versus Metformin monotherapy.

Does lemon juice lower blood sugar? ›

Lemon juice significantly lowered the mean blood glucose concentration peak by 30% (p < 0.01) and delayed it more than 35 min (78 vs. 41 min with water, p < 0.0001).

Can cinnamon lower blood sugar? ›

Cinnamon Lowers Blood Sugar Levels and Has a Powerful Anti-Diabetic Effect. Cinnamon is well known for its blood-sugar-lowering properties. Apart from the beneficial effects on insulin resistance, cinnamon can lower blood sugar by several other mechanisms.

How much apple cider vinegar should you drink a day? ›

How much apple cider vinegar a day should you drink? For general health, experts recommend drinking 15-30 ml of apple cider vinegar diluted in a cup of water. This translates to 1-2 tablespoons of ACV per day.

Does pickle juice help with diabetes? ›

Interestingly, the vinegar in commercially prepared pickle juice may help lower blood sugar levels. Research shows that vinegar can improve the body's response to insulin and significantly reduce blood sugar after meals.

Can drinking a lot of water lower your blood sugar? ›

Did you know it's Sugar Free February and that drinking water can help to lower blood sugar levels by diluting the amount of glucose (sugar) in your blood stream. By drinking water lots of water you can reduce your blood sugar as it indirectly will reduce insulin resistance and help reduce hunger.

Does peanut butter lower blood sugar? ›

Research has shown that peanuts can help control blood sugar in both healthy individuals and those with type 2 diabetes. Peanuts and peanut butter have even been shown to help lessen the spike in blood sugar when paired with high-carbohydrate or high-GL foods.

What causes blood sugar to rise without eating? ›

Some people's blood sugar is extra-sensitive to caffeine. Losing sleep—even just one night of too little sleep can make your body use insulin less well. Skipping breakfast—going without that morning meal can increase blood sugar after both lunch and dinner.

How can I reverse diabetes naturally? ›

Scientists have not yet found a way to cure or reverse type 1 diabetes. Someone with type 2 diabetes may reverse the condition by losing weight. A person is in remission if their blood sugar levels are normal for six months or longer. However, remission is not a cure for type 2 diabetes because the disease may return.

Why wont my blood sugar come down? ›

Large meals high in both carbohydrates and fat

Eating a large meal that is high in both carbohydrates, which are metabolized relatively quickly, and fats, which take more time to digest, can cause a prolonged elevation in blood glucose.

What is the pinch method for diabetes? ›

According to its proponents, you use the pinch method by holding the thumb and index finger of one hand just above the wrist of the other hand and then exerting a little bit of pressure on the wrist. Doing this will supposedly cause the release of insulin and break down glucose.

What medications should not be taken with apple cider vinegar? ›

Some medications, including insulin, digoxin, and certain diuretics, may interact with apple cider vinegar.
...
A few medications may interact with apple cider vinegar:
  • Diabetes medication. ...
  • Digoxin (Lanoxin). ...
  • Certain diuretic drugs.

Who should not have apple cider vinegar? ›

02/7When on diabetes drugs and Insulin

Indeed, apple cider vinegar is known to prevent diabetes, but when you are already on diabetes drugs or on insulin, avoid having apple cider vinegar. These medications decrease your blood sugar level and when combined with ACV, your blood sugar might get too low.

Which is better apple cider vinegar with mother or without? ›

For culinary purposes, using unfiltered apple cider vinegar produces better flavor. 2. ACV with the mother contains natural probiotics. Removing the mother also removes the threads of probiotic-dense and enzyme-rich bacteria, which might present some health benefits.

What Dr Oz says about apple cider vinegar? ›

Studies show that apple cider vinegar can reduce the rise in your blood glucose level after a meal and help promote weight loss as part of a calorie-restricted diet. Dr. Oz recommends 1 teaspoon before or with each meal (add to salad dressing or a berry shake) in his apple cider vinegar detox.

How long does apple cider vinegar take to work? ›

It took a while to get used to the pungent taste of vinegar at first, but I started seeing some changes two weeks into my experiment. After a month, I noticed healthier and "glowier" skin and less stomachaches.

Does vinegar spike insulin? ›

Vinegar Consumption Increases Insulin-Stimulated Glucose Uptake by the Forearm Muscle in Humans with Type 2 Diabetes - PMC. The .

Does turmeric lower blood sugar? ›

Management of Blood Sugar Levels

Turmeric may help manage high glucose levels in your blood. The spice was shown to increase insulin sensitivity, which leads to lower blood sugar levels. Clinical trials performed on animals reported these results suggesting that turmeric behaves as an anti-hyperglycemic agent.

What spices lower blood sugar? ›

Here are the top 10 herbs and spices for diabetes.
  • Cinnamon: Cinnamon contains bioactive components that can help lower blood sugar levels. ...
  • Fenugreek: Fenugreek is an herb that diabetic people should include in their diets. ...
  • Ginger: ...
  • Turmeric: ...
  • Garlic: ...
  • Curry Leaves: ...
  • Fenugreek: ...
  • Bitter Melon (Karela):

Is apple cider vinegar good for liver? ›

Apple Cider Vinegar

Incredible detoxification actions of ACV work to flush out the harmful toxins from the liver that hinders its normal functions. Studies discloses that regular intake of ACV promotes weight loss, diminishes cholesterol levels, lessen inflammation, and uplift the overall health of the liver.

Is it safe to drink a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar daily? ›

Most people can safely consume reasonable amounts of apple cider vinegar by following these general guidelines: Limit your intake. Start with a small amount and gradually work up to a maximum of 2 tablespoons (30 mL) per day, diluted in water, depending on your personal tolerance.

Is one tablespoon of apple cider vinegar a day good for you? ›

ACV is generally safe when consumed in moderation — no more than 1 to 2 tablespoons (tbsp) daily. But drinking excessive amounts of ACV can decrease potassium to hazardous levels. ACV may interact with some medications (including diuretics, laxatives, and certain medications for diabetes and heart disease).

Is oatmeal good for diabetics? ›

Oatmeal from whole grain oats may be a helpful addition to the diet of someone with diabetes. Oatmeal has a low glycemic index (GI) score, and the soluble fiber and beneficial compounds in oats may help people control markers of diabetes.

Can I take metformin and apple cider vinegar together? ›

Conclusion: Apple Cider Vinegar seems to be effective therapy in combination with metformin for newly diagnosed type 2 diabetic patients in improving glycemic control as well as augmenting weight reduction.

Does apple cider vinegar help type two diabetes? ›

Apple cider vinegar shown to significantly reduce post-meal blood glucose. Drinking apple cider vinegar on a regular basis could help manage type 2 diabetes, a US study has shown.

Does garlic lower your blood sugar? ›

The present study confirms that additional garlic contributes to improved blood glucose control in 1–2 weeks as well as in 24 weeks in T2DM, and plays positive roles in total cholesterol and high/low density lipoprotein regulation in 12 weeks.

Is honey good for diabetics? ›

Regina Castro, M.D. Generally, there's no advantage to substituting honey for sugar in a diabetes eating plan. Both honey and sugar will affect your blood sugar level.

What are the best fruits to lower blood sugar? ›

In addition to raspberries, studies have shown that strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries may benefit blood sugar management by enhancing insulin sensitivity and improving glucose clearance from the blood ( 42 , 43 , 44 ).

Is it better to drink apple cider vinegar in the morning or at night? ›

The fermented juice may slow down the emptying of your stomach and prevent spikes in the blood sugar level. ACV consumption has also been proven beneficial in increasing insulin sensitivity. Drinking that concoction particularly at night can be more beneficial than having it any other time of the day.

How long does it take cinnamon to lower blood sugar? ›

The addition of 1, 3, or 6 g of cinnamon to the diet led to significant decreases in serum glucose levels after 40 days.

Is apple cider vinegar better than metformin? ›

However, no significant difference was obtained in the post-treatment comparisons of weight and Body Mass Index in between the two groups. Conclusion: Apple Cider Vinegar in combination with Metformin appears to be more effective in improving glycemic control versus Metformin monotherapy.

Does vinegar lower insulin? ›

Compared with the reference meal, the highest level of vinegar significantly lowered the blood glucose response at 30 and 45 min, the insulin response at 15 and 30 min as well as increased the satiety score at 30, 90 and 120 min postprandially.

What Dr Oz says about apple cider vinegar? ›

Studies show that apple cider vinegar can reduce the rise in your blood glucose level after a meal and help promote weight loss as part of a calorie-restricted diet. Dr. Oz recommends 1 teaspoon before or with each meal (add to salad dressing or a berry shake) in his apple cider vinegar detox.

How much apple cider vinegar should you take for diabetes? ›

Drinking apple cider vinegar before meals or right before bedtime may benefit your blood sugar levels the most. For example, one study in people with type 2 diabetes found that taking 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of apple cider vinegar at bedtime for 2 days reduced fasting blood sugar levels by up to 6% ( 7 ).

What happens if you drink apple cider vinegar everyday? ›

However, aside from the aforementioned tooth enamel damage you could experience if you regularly drink it undiluted, large amounts of apple cider vinegar could cause nausea and indigestion in some people. It's also been linked with low potassium levels when taken for a long time in large quantities.

Does turmeric lower blood sugar? ›

Management of Blood Sugar Levels

Turmeric may help manage high glucose levels in your blood. The spice was shown to increase insulin sensitivity, which leads to lower blood sugar levels. Clinical trials performed on animals reported these results suggesting that turmeric behaves as an anti-hyperglycemic agent.

What spices lower blood sugar? ›

Here are the top 10 herbs and spices for diabetes.
  • Cinnamon: Cinnamon contains bioactive components that can help lower blood sugar levels. ...
  • Fenugreek: Fenugreek is an herb that diabetic people should include in their diets. ...
  • Ginger: ...
  • Turmeric: ...
  • Garlic: ...
  • Curry Leaves: ...
  • Fenugreek: ...
  • Bitter Melon (Karela):

Can cinnamon lower blood sugar? ›

Cinnamon Lowers Blood Sugar Levels and Has a Powerful Anti-Diabetic Effect. Cinnamon is well known for its blood-sugar-lowering properties. Apart from the beneficial effects on insulin resistance, cinnamon can lower blood sugar by several other mechanisms.

Is oatmeal good for diabetics? ›

Oatmeal from whole grain oats may be a helpful addition to the diet of someone with diabetes. Oatmeal has a low glycemic index (GI) score, and the soluble fiber and beneficial compounds in oats may help people control markers of diabetes.

Can I take metformin and apple cider vinegar together? ›

Conclusion: Apple Cider Vinegar seems to be effective therapy in combination with metformin for newly diagnosed type 2 diabetic patients in improving glycemic control as well as augmenting weight reduction.

Videos

1. Apple cider vinegar for diabetes: How to use Apple Cider Vinegar to Lower Your Blood Sugar Level
(Nutrition Talk)
2. Why Should You Use Apple Cider Vinegar (ACV) For Diabetes? – Dr.Berg
(Dr. Eric Berg DC)
3. Testing My Blood Sugar: Do These Blood Sugar Hacks Work?
(The Good Enough Mama)
4. Does apple cider vinegar help you lose weight and lower blood sugar? | Nourishable Raw Episode 14
(Nourishable)
5. Vinegar Impact on Blood Sugar Levels
(Health Encyclopedia)
6. Lower Your Blood Sugar Levels Quickly! Dr. Mandell
(motivationaldoc)

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