Drinking Vinegar - © yoganonymous.com

Health Benefits of Vinegar: Fact or Fiction?

I’ve been ignoring it, hoping it would just go away and leave us alone. But it shows no signs of going anywhere anytime soon, so I guess I have to comment on it. I’m talking about the recent fad for drinking Vinegar and substituting it for other foods – something I just can’t get my head around.

Vinegar Array - © pikachakula.comVinegar comes in a vast array of colours and flavour nuances – from Apple Cider,
to White Wine, to Red Wine, to Rice Wine, to Fruit-flavoured, to Herbed
and Spiced specialties and beyond. But it’s not medicine!

I’ve come across references to this fad – and I declare it as such, up front and without reservation – in all the media, mainstream and social, and I just can’t figure out why people are taking it so much to heart. Maybe it’s because proponents of the practice claim results for the drinking of vinegar which many of us long to achieve.

Here’s a sampling, courtesy of a recent Yahoo! blog post, of the things some folks are claiming Vinegar can do:

  • Regulate blood sugar levels, by acting like anti-diabetic medicines such as Acarbose and Metformin.
  • Protect heart health, by working against bad cholesterol.
  • Help weight loss, by replacing heavier condiments such as Mayo- and Cheese-based Salad Dressings
  • Kill bacteria (but this is very old news, indeed, to anyone in the foodservice sector…)
  • Fight cancer, by easing ‘oxidative stress’ (whatever that is…)

Still other enthusiasts claim Vinegar can cure warts and acne, and relieve joint pain, among other things…

Alas, aside from killing bacteria – and, thereby, helping preserve food; as in Pickles, Salted Fish and Cured Meats – I can’t really get behind any of those claims. I’m especially suspicious of any ‘natural’ approach that’s supposed to fight, or protect against the twin scourges of our time: cancer and heart disease. I deplore any faddist who, for whatever reason, holds out false hope to anyone afflicted with either of those dreaded diseases. The truth, as I see it, is: neither heart disease nor cancer (especially) is a simple condition so it only stands to reason that there can be no single, simple cure for or safeguard against either.

But I’m not a doctor and I haven’t even played one on TV. So don’t take my assertions as gospel, either. I just hope you’ll take the persistent talk about drinking vinegar with a healthy grain of salt (not to exceed 2,300 mg of Sodium per day, according to Health Canada and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention).

~ Maggie J.