Apple Cider Vinegar- Yay or Nay?

By Komiko Garcia- Health Education Tech

There are usually many types of dieting crazes that people are trying. Ones that don’t require exercise, restrict a certain type of food, or encourage maybe just protein shakes. But one that many people have been trying now is Apple cider vinegar. Apple cider vinegar can be found in all types, from the actual liquid, to pill form, even in a gummy form.

First question we should ask is what is apple cider vinegar? Well apple cider vinegar is a result of apples that have been crushed and fermented. The yeast digests the sugars in the apples and turns them into alcohol. There is also a bacteria called acetobacter that turns the alcohol into acetic acid. The combination of the yeast and bacteria counts as a probiotic. And since apple cider vinegar has a vitamin profile similar to apple juice, when drunken it has B vitamins and polyphenols which is a plant-based antioxidant. These are some one the reasons why it is believed it makes it ne beneficial to one’s health.

One benefit people may say is that Apple cider vinegar can help with Blood sugar control. While diabetes is a huge issue among our native American people, could this be beneficial? In 2004 there was a study published in the Journal of the American Association of Diabetes that had given participants a meal which consisted of a bagel, orange juice and butter. After the meal, the participants each received 20 grams of apple cider vinegar or a placebo. They then checked the participants blood sugar levels 30 and 60 minutes after the meal. Those that had the apple cider vinegar had significantly lowered their post-meal blood sugar levels. So in conclusion to the study they believe that apple cider CAN NOT cure diabetes but it can moderately lower blood sugar levels and also should not take place of any medications.

The other biggest reason of using apple cider vinegar has been for weight loss. While we are always in hopes of finding a similar way to lose excess weight it usually comes down to eating healthy and encouraging that physical activity. There was a clinical trial recently published in the Journal of Functional Food that shows apple cider vinegar may slightly help with weight loss. Each participant in the trial drank 15 ml of apple cider vinegar with lunch and dinner and consumed 250 calories less than their daily requirements. The participants that drank the apple cider vinegar lost an average of 8.8 lbs. in over 12 weeks. While the group that did not receive the apple cider vinegar only lost 5 lbs. over 12 weeks, the researchers who performed the trial also found that the apple cider vinegar group also had decreased cholesterol levels. This trial showed that apple cider vinegar does slightly help with weight loss but you should still be sure to live a healthy lifestyle with healthy eating and physical activity.

With different studies it shows that yes apple cider vinegar may have its health benefits, but there are also some things to be careful about. For instance, the acid in apple cider vinegar may erode the enamel on your teeth, so be sure to rinse with water after drinking the apple cider vinegar. Acidic foods or liquids like apple cider vinegar may exacerbate acid reflux. Also, very important note, if you have chronic kidney disease, your kidneys may not be able to process the excess acid that comes with drinking apple cider vinegar. If you are looking for more information on eating healthy or increasing your physical activity, feel free to call the Fort Berthold Diabetes Program and schedule an appointment with our amazing Registered Dietitians or speak with one of our Healthy Education Techs on our current fitness programs at 627-7932.