Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Health Benefits of Vinegar

Vinegar is a product of fermentation. This is a process in which sugars in a food are broken down by bacteria and yeast. In the first stage of fermentation, the sugars are turned into alcohol. Then, if the alcohol ferments further, you get vinegar. The word comes from the French, meaning "sour wine." While vinegar can be made from all sorts of things -- like many fruits, vegetables, and grain. Vinegars contain acetic acid, other acids, vitamins, mineral salts, and amino acids.

-Insect bites or stings will be soothed quickly by pouring vinegar on it.

-Pour vinegar on sunburn

-Salicylic acid is what you use on warts. Vinegar is acetic acid and works in the same way, however more gently.

-Just 5% of vinegar mixed in a solution of your choice, can kill 99% of bacteria, 82% of mold, 80% of germs (viruses).

-A teaspoon or two of vinegar will cure hiccups.

Apple Cider Vinegar: 

Apple cider vinegar, otherwise known simply as cider vinegar or ACV, is made from cider or apple must, and has a brownish-gold color. It often is sold unfiltered and unpasteurized with the mother of vinegar present, as a natural product. Because of its acidity, apple cider vinegar may be very harsh, even burning, to the throat. If taken straight (as opposed to used in cooking), it can be diluted (e.g., with fruit juice or water) before drinking.  It is also sometimes sweetened with sugar or honey. The pH of apple cider vinegar is typically between pH 4.25 and 5.00 if undiluted.

-Two teaspoons of apple cider vinegar and honey mixed with enough hot water to melt the honey has been known to help with headaches and weight loss. A 2005 study of 12 people found that those who ate a piece of bread along with small amounts of white vinegar felt fuller and more satisfied than those who just ate the bread. 

-Bathing in some apple cider vinegar can help with urinary tract infections. I read someone who didn't have a bath tub, used a used cotton ball with apple cider vinegar and swabbed the urethra and it took care of the problem .

-Apple cider vinegar has helped skin conditions from eczema to aging brown spots.

-Apple cider vinegar helps fight against food cravings.

-If you drink a teaspoon or so of apple cider vinegar in a glass of water to help with digestion, bowel function, cholesterol, and even preventing ulcers. 

-gargling with or drinking apple cider vinegar can help calm a sore throat and speed up the healing process *although may make you gag

-Diabetes. The effect of vinegar on blood sugar levels is perhaps the best researched and the most promising of apple cider vinegar's possible health benefits. Several studies have found that vinegar may help lower glucose levels. For instance, a 2007 study of 11 people with type 2 diabetes found that taking two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar before bed lowered glucose levels in the morning by 4%-6%.

-High cholesterol.  A 2006 study showed evidence that vinegar could lower cholesterol. However, the study was done in rats, so it's too early to know how it might work in people.
-Blood pressure and heart health.   Another study in rats found that vinegar could lower high blood pressure. A large observational study also found that people who ate oil and vinegar dressing on salads five to six times a week had lower rates of heart disease than people who didn't. However, it's far from clear that the vinegar was the reason.

-Cancer.  A few laboratory studies have found that vinegar may be able to kill cancer cells or slow their growth. Observational studies of people have been confusing. One found that eating vinegar was associated with a decreased risk of esophageal cancer. Another associated it with an increased risk of bladder cancer.

Balsamic Vinegar:

Balsamic vinegar is an aromatic, aged type of vinegar traditionally crafted in the Modena and Reggio Emilia provinces of Italy from the concentrated juice, or must, of white grapes (typically of the Trebbiano variety). It is very dark brown in color, and its flavor is rich, sweet, and complex, with the finest grades being the product of years of aging in a successive number of casks made of various types of wood (including oak, mulberry, chestnut, cherry, juniper, ash, and acacia). Originally a product available to only the Italian upper classes, a cheaper form of balsamic vinegar became widely known and available around the world in the late 20th century. True balsamic vinegar (which has Protected Designation of Origin status) is aged for 12 to 25 years. Balsamic vinegars that have been aged for up to 100 years are available, though they are usually very expensive. The commercial balsamic sold in supermarkets is typically made with concentrated grape juice mixed with a strong vinegar, which is laced with caramel and sugar. Regardless of how it is produced, balsamic vinegar must be made from a grape product

-Balsamic can help prevent anemia and fatigue

-Balsamic may reduce the frequency of headaches

-Balsamic antioxidant may slow the aging process

 -Weight Loss.  Balsamic vinegar can be used as a substitute for salad dressing or marinades. When used in place of other dressings or marinades that are more fattening, it results in a lower calorie intake. Balsamic vinegar also works to suppress the body's appetite and increase the amount of time it takes for the stomach to empty, which can contribute to weight loss by preventing overeating. According to Nutrition Data, balsamic vinegar is a source of calcium, iron, manganese and potassium, which improve the body's functioning and weight loss abilities

-Antioxidants.  Antioxidants work to repair damage caused by free radicals, which are products produced by the oxygen used in our body. Balsamic vinegar contains polyphenols, antioxidants that can protect the body from heart disease and cancer.  The grapes that are used to make balsamic vinegar also contain antioxidants that fight against cell damage, improve the body's immune system and make blood platelets more flexible, thus preventing heart or circulation problems. Another element found in balsamic vinegar is a bioflovanoid, called quercetin, which also has antioxidant properties and helps fight immunity deficiencies.

-Bone Health.  Pepsin and acetic acid both help improve absorption of crucial minerals into the body such as calcium and magnesium.  Both of this minerals are abundant in balsamic vinegar and are vital for healthy and strong bones.

Red Wine Vinegar 

Wine vinegar is made from red or white wine, and is the most commonly used vinegar in Mediterranean countries and Central Europe. As with wine, there is a considerable range in quality. Better-quality wine vinegars are matured in wood for up to two years, and exhibit a complex, mellow flavor. Wine vinegar tends to have a lower acidity than white or cider vinegars. 

-Calcium absorption has also been linked to the consumption of red wine vinegar, according to scientists in Japan and reported on Thirdage.com. Researchers found that feeding animals a 1.6 percent solution of vinegar for 32 days increased the rate of calcium absorption. Researchers also found a 40 percent rise in the calcium levels of chicken broth when vinegar was added to the solution.

-Researchers in Seville, Spain, found that adding a 5 percent solution of acetic acid, found in red wine vinegar, produced bactericidal activity and was effective against strains of Salmonella, Yersinia and monocytogenes. According to the research done at Instituto de la Grasa, CSIC, adding red wine vinegar to foods inhibits the growth of these bacterias.

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