Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Apple Cider Vinegar for Diabetes and Heart Disease

One of the biggest "cure-alls" in the realm of natural medicine is apple cider vinegar. It frequently makes its way into lay publications. Unfortunately, touting apple cider vinegar as a cure-all is problematic. First and foremost, it is not a cure-all. Second, saddling natural medicine with so-called panaceas makes natural medicine look like the realm of snake oil, and brings its reputation down.

But the effects of apple cider vinegar on cardiac risk factors and diabetes have been studied. And the results have been quite impressive.

One study has shown that cardiac risk factors improve with apple cider vinegar supplementation. According to this study, normal rats who took apple cider vinegar with meals showed a significant decrease in LDLs (the "lethal" form of cholesterol), and a significant increase in HDLs (the "healthy" form of cholesterol). Rats with diabetes had a decreased HgbA1c (basically, the average of blood glucose over the past 3 months), decreased triglycerides, and increased HDLs. This is a promising study, but a human study should be done to see if this trend applies to humans also.

A second study shows that apple cider vinegar can improve insulin sensitivity for persons with type 2 diabetes, or even those with insulin resistance (a precursor to type 2 diabetes). And a third study demonstrates that in type 1 diabetics, blood sugar spikes after eating (aka postprandial hyperglycemia) are lessened when vinegar is taken before meals. What does this mean? If you are diabetic or at risk of developing diabetes, I strongly recommend that you take apple cider vinegar regularly.

Here's the "recipe": take a teaspoon of apple cider vinegar in 4-8 oz of water, shortly before meals. You can also take it after meals if you experience indigestion. If it tastes too sour, you can add a teaspoon of raw honey to the mix, making it taste like apple cider. Some people believe that this is the ideal way to take it. It is not recommended to take it undiluted, as it may dissolve tooth enamel.

1 comment:

  1. The information that you provided was thorough and helpful. I will have to share your article with others
    Fertility Naturopath