What is Vinegar?

Saturday May 15, 2010

This post is dedicated to a special person that is confused over vinegar … 😉

Vinegar is prepared by the process of fermentation to cause sugars to break down into ethyl alcohol and carbon dioxide gas.  During a second fermentation, bacteria assist the alcohol to react with oxygen in the air to form acetic acid (which is the vinegar).  Vinegars range from different percentages of acetic acid (4-9%).  This level of acidity makes vinegar useful in preserving food, as bacteria cannot grow in such strong acid.  The acidity also enhances the flavor of food.  The most popular vinegars are made form grapes, apples, barley, maize, and rice.

Vinegar has no nutritional or caloric values.  Therefore often it is associated with weight loss and dieting.  Some studies even suggest that it can influence satiety! One study looked at the consumption of wheat bread served with vinegar vs. wheat bread served without vinegar by 15 healthy subjects.  The wheat bread with vinegar resulted in significantly higher satiety than the wheat bread meal without vinegar.  This may be explained by increased digestion after ingestion of the bread (Nutritional Journal, 2008). Another study indicates vinegar has the potential of reducing responses of blood glucose and insulin, and increasing the subjective rating of satiety (European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 2005). In conclusion, consuming vinegar with food may increases satiety and reduces the amount of food consumed, hence help in weight loss.

Vinegar does not have any side effects, if consumed in reasonable amounts.  As indicated above it could help in weight management, and possibly help lower blood glucose (treatment for diabetics?).  Due to its acidity it can be used as a preservative, as well as an antibacterial solution.

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1 Comment »

Greta:

I absolutely love vinegar. I put it on my salad, my potatoes, my fish, my bread (balsamic of course, and sometimes use it on my body when I have a fever :). I do agree that vinegar helps in weight management but one must be careful on how much vinegar they consume daily!

May 18th, 2010 | 9:37 pm
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