Apple Cider Vinegar and Diabetes

I came across this article in mercola.com which mentions how apple cider vinegar is good for controlling blood sugar and weight.  I have also heard how cinnamon and Eucalyptus leaves help normalize blood sugar levels too.

Apple Cider Vinegar—Good for Your Health

The cider vinegars, made from fermenting fruits such as apples, have little value as cleaners or herbicides. Instead, these are the types of vinegar associated with a number of different health benefits when taken internally. There are two basic categories of cider vinegars:

  • Regular apple cider vinegar
  • Organic apple cider vinegar with the “mother” included

When purchasing an apple cider vinegar, you’ll want to avoid the perfectly clear, “sparkling clean” varieties you commonly see on grocery store shelves. Instead, you want organic, unfiltered, unprocessed apple cider vinegar, which is murky and brown. When you try to look through it, you will notice a cobweb-like substance floating in it. This is known as “mother,” and it indicates your vinegar is of good quality. While it may look suspicious at first, in this case, it’s the murky looking stuff you want. As with everything else, the more processed a food is, the less nutritious it is, and this holds true for apple cider vinegar.

Surprisingly enough, while apple cider vinegar has historically been prized for its health benefits, little research has been done to evaluate its therapeutic actions. However, lack of scientific studies is a common problem for many natural and alternative therapies.

Perhaps the most researched and the most promising of apple cider vinegar’s benefits are in the area of type 2 diabetes. Several studies have found that vinegar may help lower blood glucose levels. In 2004, a study cited in the American Diabetes Foundation’s publication Diabetes Care1 found that taking vinegar before meals significantly increased insulin sensitivity and dramatically reduced the insulin and glucose spikes that occur after meals. The study involved 29 people, divided into three groups:

  1. One third had been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.
  2. One third had prediabetic signs.
  3. One third were healthy.

The results were quite significant:

  • All three groups had better blood glucose readings with the vinegar than with the placebo.
  • People with prediabetic symptoms benefitted the most from the vinegar, cutting their blood glucose concentrations by nearly half.
  • People with diabetes improved their blood glucose levels by 25 percent with vinegar.
  • People with prediabetic symptoms had lower blood glucose than the healthy participants after both drank vinegar.

A follow-up study geared at testing vinegar’s long-term effects yielded an unexpected but pleasant side effect: moderate weight loss. In this study, participants taking two tablespoons of vinegar prior to two meals per day lost an average of two pounds over the four-week period, and some lost up to four pounds. In 2007, another study cited by WebMD2 involving 11 people with type 2 diabetes found taking two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar before bed lowered glucose levels in the morning by 4 to 6 percent. Although the research to date looks favorable, more studies are needed to confirm the extent of vinegar’s insulin stabilization benefits.

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