A spoonful of sugar may help the medicine go down (metaphorically speaking), but what about a spoonful of apple cider vinegar?
Apple cider vinegar is the latest and greatest “miracle cure” for everything from weight loss to managing diabetes to curing dandruff. It may even have some heart health benefits, but before you make a break to the pantry, let’s take a closer look at this fad.
A history of health
In truth, vinegar has been around for millennia (think 3000 BC) and has been used both for culinary and medicinal purposes throughout its history. With an abundance of polyphenols and antiseptic properties, it makes sense. So, what does modern science say about this ancient remedy? Well, that’s a more complicated answer.
The proof is in the polyphenols
First, lets talk about polyphenols. This variety of antioxidant is known for its ability to help balance your gut by allowing good bacteria to thrive. That’s good for digestion, weight loss, diabetes management, and yes, even heart health. However, the problem is that studies haven’t been able to conclusively show that humans actually absorb this from vinegar.
Vinegar and vascular health
What does this mean for your heart? Well, the jury is still out. The good news is that research has suggested that vinegar can lower cholesterol and triglyceride levels, as well as reduce blood pressure. The bad news is that most of these findings come from animal studies. While there could be new findings later, for now there’s not enough conclusive evidence.
Flavour and polyphenols
So, you probably shouldn’t take a swig out of your vinegar on the regular (seriously, don’t. It’s highly acidic.). However, a spoonful of apple cider vinegar could help some heart healthy foods go down a little easier. Apple cider vinegar is great for adding a punch of flavor to just about any dish (looking at you, spinach.).
Apple cider vinegar may not be a silver bullet for a healthier heart, but a healthy diet can improve your heart and overall health. Before starting any new diet, you should speak with your doctor. They’ll be able to discuss all your dietary needs and determine the best options for a healthier you.