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The Many Uses Of Red Wine Vinegar

Benefits Of Red Wine Vinegar

Red wine vinegar is rich in antioxidant anthocyanin compounds. It can help lower blood pressure, manage cholesterol levels, improve the absorption of calcium, and boost your weight management plans. Taken with meals, it can reduce the post-meal spike in blood sugar. You can also mix it with witch hazel and rose water to make an astringent skin toner.

A healthy slosh of red wine vinegar can jazz up any salad. But this diluted acetic acid solution made by naturally fermenting wine has many other cards up its sleeves. Use a good quality vinegar and you get a range of health benefits with that tangy flavor! Here’s what you need to know about the goodness of this crimson “sour wine.”

1. Is Rich In Protective And Anti-Aging Antioxidants

Red wine vinegar contains phenolics and anthocyanin compounds which have potent antioxidant activity. Anthocyanins are pigments which give foods like red grapes and blueberries their color. According to research, red wine vinegar contains about 20 anthocyanin compounds.1 2

Red wine vinegar contains antioxidant anthocyanins which may help to prevent cardiovascular illnesses, neuronal diseases, cancer, diabetes, and inflammation.3

 These antioxidants, in turn, help limit or prevent damage due to free radicals. Free radicals are made by your body during the process of converting food into energy and can be found in environmental toxins, alcohol, and processed foods. They can damage your DNA and cells, contribute to aging, and may also have a role in diseases such as diabetes, cancer, and heart disease.4

2. Helps With Heart Palpitations When Combined With Grape Juice

One animal study looked at the effect of a beverage that contained red wine vinegar and grape juice and found these ingredients helped decrease heart rate. Though the researchers couldn’t pinpoint the components responsible for this effect, they suggested that this combination may work for people concerned about palpitations.5 While research on this is at a nascent stage, have a word with your doctor to see if this is something you can explore.

3. Lowers High Blood Pressure

Acetic acid, the main component in red wine vinegar, can combat high blood pressure. Researchers suggest that this is because it can decrease angiotensin II, which is a hormone that constricts your blood vessels and thereby increases blood pressure.6 Studies have also found that the combination of red wine vinegar and grape juice can lower blood pressure.7

While some of the research is based on animal models at the moment, there’s no harm in incorporating red wine vinegar in your daily diet. Use this vinegar regularly in your salad dressings or have a little with grape juice to turn down the pressure.

4. Reduces Post-Meal Spike In Blood Sugar

Vinegar “teas” have been traditionally used to control high blood sugar. Though the mechanism through which red wine vinegar affects blood sugar is not precisely known, acetic acid in vinegar has been found to suppress the activities of enzymes like sucrase and maltase which help with absorbing carbohydrates. So having a couple of tablespoons of red wine vinegar diluted with water before your meals may help tamp down blood sugar spikes seen after having a meal.8 Research also shows that having vinegar at bedtime can result in a lower blood sugar level on waking in people with type 2 diabetes.9

5. Helps Manage Cholesterol Levels

High cholesterol levels can spell trouble for your heart. But acetic acid can inhibit the formation of fat (lipogenesis) in the liver. One animal study found that subjects who were fed vinegar along with a high cholesterol diet had much lower levels of cholesterol in the blood than the control group fed a high cholesterol diet only. It was also found that having acetic acid increased bile acid excretion. Since excess cholesterol is converted into bile acids before being excreted in stools, this could be another mechanism through which acetic acid helps in managing cholesterol levels.10

6. Improves The Absorption Of Calcium

Calcium is a critical mineral that’s necessary for keeping your bones strong and healthy. And red wine vinegar can enhance its absorption by your body. One animal study found that subjects on a low calcium diet were able to absorb more of the mineral when they were fed vinegar. It has been suggested that acetic acid increases the absorption of calcium in the intestine by improving its solubility.11

7. Boosts Satiety

Hunger pangs can quickly derail the healthiest diets. But acetic acid present in red wine vinegar may be able to stave them off. One study found that when people had vinegar along with bread for breakfast they experienced an increase in satiety.12 Vinegar may do this by keeping food in your stomach for a longer period so that you feel full.13

8. Helps Fight Obesity

A little red wine vinegar can be your secret weapon against obesity. We just saw that it can improve satiety. But that’s not all it does. Animal studies have found that acetic acid can inhibit the accumulation of body fat in subjects fed a high-fat diet.14 Meanwhile, a Japanese study treated obese people with a 500 ml beverage containing either 15 or 30 ml of vinegar daily for a period of 12 weeks. It was found that the groups that received this treatment had significantly lower BMI, body weight, waist circumference, and visceral fat area than the control group.15 Acetic acid may work here by improving the response to enzymes involved in the breaking down of fat.

9. Offers A Range Of Minerals

Minerals play important roles in keeping you healthy and are needed for a range of functions involving your heart, muscles, brain, and bones. They’re also needed to make hormones and enzymes.16 Red wine vinegar contains a good mix of minerals such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, copper, potassium, sodium, manganese, and iron in small quantities.17 A couple of spoons every day can boost your mineral intake.

10. Fights Germs

The acidic content of red wine vinegar makes it effective against a variety of germs. It has been found to be particularly useful against foodborne pathogens such as E. coli and S. typhimurium and can help eliminate these during food preparation. For instance, a study found that treating rocket leaves with a mixture of vinegar and lemon juice for 15 minutes reduced the presence of S. typhimurium to an undetectable level.1819

11. Works As A Skin Toner

Red wine vinegar has astringent properties and can help close your pores and refresh your skin. Mix it in with witch hazel which also has astringent properties and add some anti-inflammatory rose water that can soothe irritated skin. You’ve got an all-natural homemade toner now!20

Don’t Overdo It

Have no more than 2 tablespoons of red wine vinegar at a time. Try using it in salad dressings and reductions. If you’re drinking vinegar, make sure you dilute a tablespoon of it with a full glass of water. This is to avoid any damage its acidic content can do to your throat, teeth, or stomach lining.21 While red wine vinegar doesn’t commonly cause heartburn in spite of its acidity, start small If you’re not used to vinegar.

References   [ + ]

1. Budak, Havva Nilgun, and Zeynep B. Guzel‐Seydim. “Antioxidant activity and phenolic content of wine vinegars produced by two different techniques.” Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture 90, no. 12 (2010): 2021-2026.
2. Cerezo, Ana B., Elyana Cuevas, Peter Winterhalter, M. Carmen Garcia-Parrilla, and Ana M. Troncoso. “Anthocyanin composition in Cabernet Sauvignon red wine vinegar obtained by submerged acetification.” Food research international 43, no. 6 (2010): 1577-1584.
3. Yousuf, Basharat, Khalid Gul, Ali Abas Wani, and Preeti Singh. “Health benefits of anthocyanins and their encapsulation for potential use in food systems: a review.” Critical reviews in food science and nutrition 56, no. 13 (2016): 2223-2230.
4. Antioxidants: What You Need to Know. American Academy of Family Physicians.
5. Sugiyama, Atsushi, Masaki Saitoh, Akira Takahara, Yoshioki Satoh, and Keitaro Hashimoto. “Acute cardiovascular effects of a new beverage made of wine vinegar and grape juice, assessed using an in vivo rat.” Nutrition research 23, no. 9 (2003): 1291-1296.
6. Kondo, Shino, Kenji Tayama, Yoshinori Tsukamoto, Katsumi Ikeda, and Yukio Yamori. “Antihypertensive effects of acetic acid and vinegar on spontaneously hypertensive rats.” Bioscience, biotechnology, and biochemistry 65, no. 12 (2001): 2690-2694.
7. Honsho, Sachiko, Atsushi Sugiyama, Akira Takahara, Yoshioki Satoh, Yuji Nakamura, and Keitaro Hashimoto. “A red wine vinegar beverage can inhibit the renin-angiotensin system: experimental evidence in vivo.” Biological and Pharmaceutical Bulletin 28, no. 7 (2005): 1208-1210.
8. Johnston, Carol S., and Cindy A. Gaas. “Vinegar: medicinal uses and antiglycemic effect.” Medscape General Medicine 8, no. 2 (2006): 61.
9. White, Andrea M., and Carol S. Johnston. “Vinegar ingestion at bedtime moderates waking glucose concentrations in adults with well-controlled type 2 diabetes.” Diabetes Care 30, no. 11 (2007): 2814-2815.
10. Fushimi, Takashi, Kazuhito Suruga, Yoshifumi Oshima, Momoko Fukiharu, Yoshinori Tsukamoto, and Toshinao Goda. “Dietary acetic acid reduces serum cholesterol and triacylglycerols in rats fed a cholesterol-rich diet.” British Journal of Nutrition 95, no. 5 (2006): 916-924.
11. Kishi, Mikiya, Masahiro Fukaya, Yoshinori Tsukamoto, Takashi Nagasawa, Kazushige Takehana, and Naoyuki Nishizawa. “Enhancing effect of dietary vinegar on the intestinal absorption of calcium in ovariectomized rats.” Bioscience, biotechnology, and biochemistry 63, no. 5 (1999): 905-910.
12. Östman, Elin, Yvonne Granfeldt, Lisbeth Persson, and Inger Björck. “Vinegar supplementation lowers glucose and insulin responses and increases satiety after a bread meal in healthy subjects.” European journal of clinical nutrition 59, no. 9 (2005): 983-988.
13. Hlebowicz, Joanna, Gassan Darwiche, Ola Björgell, and Lars-Olof Almér. “Effect of apple cider vinegar on delayed gastric emptying in patients with type 1 diabetes mellitus: a pilot study.” BMC gastroenterology 7, no. 1 (2007): 46.
14. Kondo, Tomoo, Mikiya Kishi, Takashi Fushimi, and Takayuki Kaga. “Acetic acid upregulates the expression of genes for fatty acid oxidation enzymes in liver to suppress body fat accumulation.” Journal of agricultural and food chemistry 57, no. 13 (2009): 5982-5986.
15. Kondo, Tomoo, Mikiya Kishi, Takashi Fushimi, Shinobu Ugajin, and Takayuki Kaga. “Vinegar intake reduces body weight, body fat mass, and serum triglyceride levels in obese Japanese subjects.” Bioscience, biotechnology, and biochemistry 73, no. 8 (2009): 1837-1843.
16. Minerals. National Institutes of Health.
17. Vinegar, red wine Nutrition Facts & Calories. SelfNutritionData.
18. Entani, Etsuzo, Mito Asai, Shigetomo Tsujihata, Yoshinori Tsukamoto, and Michio Ohta. “Antibacterial action of vinegar against food-borne pathogenic bacteria including Escherichia coli O157: H7.” Journal of food protection 61, no. 8 (1998): 953-959.
19. Sengun, Ilkin Yucel, and Mehmet Karapinar. “Effectiveness of household natural sanitizers in the elimination of Salmonella typhimurium on rocket (Eruca sativa Miller) and spring onion (Allium cepa L.).” International Journal of Food Microbiology 98, no. 3 (2005): 319-323.
20. Orey, Cal. The healing powers of vinegar. Kensington Publishing Corp., 2009.
21. Can apple cider vinegar help with weight loss?. CNN.

Disclaimer: The content is purely informative and educational in nature and should not be construed as medical advice. Please use the content only in consultation with an appropriate certified medical or healthcare professional.