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Drinking Vinegar And Its Health Benefits

Updated on April 21, 2015
Cardisa profile image

Carolee is a passionate writer with a love for learning and teaching. She is a published author, poet, blogger, and content creator.


Can someone really drink vinegar? One of the first things I heard about vinegar was it's benefit towards weight loss. I tried it but I couldn't keep up the ritual but my stomach did feel better after drinking. So personally I never proved the weight loss theory, but based on what happens with vinegar and fat when combined it is not hard to believe that it would work by breaking down fats.

One of the first things one would ask is: Is it safe to drink? Many people know that vinegar is on the acidic side and that we should not consume too much so it begs to question if, how, when and why vinegar can be consumed.

Different types of vinegar

There are many different types of vinegar and I will list the most popular ones here. What I have come to realize is that most cultures have their own type of vinegar made from some item in their culture that is original to them.

  • Apple cider - maybe the most popular in the western world
  • White cane - definitely the most popular in the Caribbean and Jamaica, also very popular in the Philippines.
  • Balsamic - very popular in Europe
  • Red Wine - very popular in the Mediterranean and Eastern Europe
  • White wine
  • Rice vinegar - of Asian origin
  • Malt

I am sure there are others especially in Asia but am unable to list them all. In Jamaica we also use ripe bananas to make vinegar but I have never seen this on the market so I assume it's just a local concoction.

Health benefits of vinegar

Vinegar has many health benefits and can be used in many ways including cooking, salads dressing and drinking. Here are some of the benefits of vinegar.

Some tests, even though not conclusive, have linked vinegar to a low risk of esophageal cancer where it is believed that the acid in the vinegar kills cancer cells.

Another link to vinegar is the benefit of assisting the breakdown and absorption of calcium thus increasing the amount the body gets. This benefits our bones by reducing the risk of osteoporosis. Vinegar’s main ingredients is acetic acid which helps to break down certain minerals such as calcium. Having some vinegar before taking your calcium will greatly increase the amount the body actually utilizes.

In a study conducted with two groups of persons with type two diabetes, shows that the group of persons who consumed diluted vinegar solution right before bed showed a decrease in blood sugar levels of 4 - 6% in the morning as opposed to the group who did not take the vinegar.

One of the most popular uses for vinegar is to control weight. There have been no conclusive studies but there have been reports of people who drink the vinegar solution before meals who say they feel fuller on less calories than those who do not consume the solution. Not only is the direct drinking of vinegar a great impact on weight loss but the use of the product in dressings. ½ cup of vinegar carries only 25 calories while ½ cup of mayonnaise carry 800 do the math.

Drinking vinegar for health reasons

There is no definite formula for drinking vinegar for health reasons. The most common dose has been 2 tablespoons to a cup of water per day. If you are taking vinegar capsules than you would be advised to follow the directions on the container. But 285 mg is the usual dose.

The thing to remember is that vinegar is acidic and it is never wise to consume to much acidic substances. While vinegar helps to maintain a balance PH in the body consuming too much may raise that level and your body becoming too acidic.

If you find drinking vinegar hard on the stomach but would still like the benefits consider taking the capsule.

Consider using vinegar for salad dressings instead of the usual creamy dressings. Vinegar and olive oil usually gives a very nice flavor and need little else to make it work.


Talk to Your Health Care Provider

This article is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Consult your doctor or alternative medicine provider.


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    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hey TToombs08, I doubt that the smell of vinegar lingers on the breath very long. I t does freshen the breath

    • TToombs08 profile image

      Terrye Toombs 6 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

      Very interesting. I used a variety of vinegars in cooking, but never thought about drinking it. I'm afraid hubby wouldn't come near me if I did, he hates the smell of vinegar. Hm...maybe if we get into an argument, I'll take a swig. :) Great hub, voted up and more.

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hey Toomuchmint, I personally have never made it. My Sister-in law made it when she was with my brother. I don't think it's complicated at all. I remember her putting the ripe bananas to ferment in a tight plastic container but have no idea what comes next.

      Thanks you so much for visiting and commenting.

    • toomuchmint profile image

      toomuchmint 6 years ago

      Great hub Cardisa! Apple cider vinegar with honey and water (like lemonade) is great after a run - especially with unfiltered organic vinegar.

      Is making vinegar from bananas complicated?

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hi Insane, I haven't heard of the blood pressure benefits before but I do know of it's antiseptic benefits. I didn't put that in the hub since the hub is about it's health benefits. Vinegar is my favourite thing to clean counter tops and my refrigerator. Have a great day.

    • Insane Mundane profile image

      Insane Mundane 6 years ago from Earth

      One the biggest health benefits I've always heard about vinegar, is its ability to help lower your blood pressure, when consumed regularly.

      Plus, regular vinegar makes for a great multi-purpose cleaner replacement. Just put some in a spray bottle (full strength or in a 50/50 water solution) and you'd be surprised at how effective it is at cleaning stuff up. Cheers!

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hello Twinstime2, despite the taste it's actually good for you and not so bad if you add the honey. Thanks for stopping by.

    • twinstimes2 profile image

      Karen Lackey 6 years ago from Ohio

      Informative hub. I might just try a drink of vinegar! Thanks, Cardisa! Up and Useful!

    • Green Lotus profile image

      Hillary 6 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      oh so helpful! much thanks for that additional information!

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hi Green Lotus, I am really gonna have to try that ice cream balsamic recipe!

      Milk tend to ferment on the stomach but that's only if you are having a digestive problem. Usually if you have too much acid the milk will soothe it but after a time you will find that it's not being digested properly because the acid in the stomach is curding the milk and you know that curdled milk equals

      The vinegar is good for the stomach if you are gassy, but when you are having acid reflux it's better to have soy milk or yogurt. Yogurt is actually alkaline and will help to balance the PH in the stomach.

    • Green Lotus profile image

      Hillary 6 years ago from Atlanta, GA

      I'm with Kaili Bisson. As a big fan of balsamic vinegar I use it regularly in salads and over ice cream (low carb of course:)

      I have always been a bit confused about the acid factor so thanks for the clarification. Someone once told me milk gives you an acid stomach and that vinegar is actually good for acidity. Weird!

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hi OM, I have tried it with honey and it's good. Vinegar isn't that bad, it's just very

    • Om Paramapoonya profile image

      Om Paramapoonya 6 years ago

      Very interesting! I never drank vinegar by itself but have tried putting it in a drink. I believe I made it with balsamic vinegar, sparkling water, honey and mint extract. It actually tasted pretty good!

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hey Jackie, I haven't thought of the health drink. If you add some honey and water it taste just like another drink too. I use the white vinegar mostly for cleansing meat because I hate the slime meat has on it and the vinegar neutralizes that. Thanks for stopping by.

    • Jackie Lynnley profile image

      Jackie Lynnley 6 years ago from The Beautiful South

      Vinegar can be added to health drinks and you don't even notice it. I have drank it and had it on salads almost every day for years. That probably would keep it from being so acidic. I love apple cider vinegar. I don't use the white for anything but cleaning the insides of my coffee maker. lol

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hi Goodlady, white vinegar is cheaper and very handy at cleaning and it is natural. I love balsamic for cooking too. I never thought it could be used for coughs. Thanks for that.

    • GoodLady profile image

      Penelope Hart 6 years ago from Rome, Italy

      We use apple cider vinegar for throaty coughs and colds with honey and warm water. My mother has always sworn by it. We use balsamic on cooking foods or marinating. We use white wine vinegar for cleaning the refrigerator.

      Interesting Hub, thanks. I certainly could do with losing a few pounds, so I'll drink more's really very pleasant.


    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Thank you Kiss and Tales.

    • Kiss andTales profile image

      Kiss andTales 6 years ago

      good hub ,good advice!

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      The Raggededge, that would definitely balance the PH in your stomach whereas the antacid reduces any gas that's left there. You can't go wrong with drinking vinegar.

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hi Vellur, thanks for stopping by.

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hi Kalli, that is something I must try for sure. I will try to get a bottle of that one. I love Balsamic vinegar, it's not as biting as the others and taste great when used in cooking. Thanks for the suggestion.

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hi Teasherjoe52, wow, that's great. I never thought of drinking to remind me of the sacrifice Jesus made. Thanks for sharing.

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hi Ruby, same here, I tried drinking it but never quite kept it up due to the taste. But I do prefer red wine vinegar to apple cider. I use it a lot in cooking and salads though.

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hi James, sipping the pickle juice is similar to drinking the vinegar but a little I have been trying to come up with vinegar drink ideas too.

    • theraggededge profile image

      Bev G 6 years ago from Wales, UK

      I remember a few years back I kept getting what I thought was heartburn about an hour after eating. It was really painful. Then I found out that it was the opposite to heartburn/indigestion - my stomach wasn't producing enough acid. Apparently it is common as you get older. Many people treat it with antacids, which of course makes it even worse (I did at first). I tried apple cider vinegar in water and it went - immediately. I drank it once a day for a week and it never returned. It's nice in carbonated water - really wakes you up!

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 6 years ago from Dubai

      Interesting, never knew all this about vinegar. Thanks for sharing.

    • Kaili Bisson profile image

      Kaili Bisson 6 years ago from Canada

      Hi Cardisa...loved this Hub. Here is something to try if you haven't before; premium aged balsamic vinegar is quite thick and takes on a wonderful sweetness from aging in wooden barrels...try a spoonful on a scoop of vanilla ice cream. You wouldn't believe how good it is :-)

    • teacherjoe52 profile image

      teacherjoe52 6 years ago

      I have a teasoopn of red wine vinegar in the morning as communion. It's biting reminds me of the pain Jesus suffered on the cross for us,

      Yes apple cider vinegar is great with olive oil for a salad dressing.

      Very good article.

      Thank you

    • always exploring profile image

      Ruby Jean Richert 6 years ago from Southern Illinois

      Interesting. I can't stand the thought of drinking vinegar, but i do use it in salads and cooked spinach. Thank's for sharing...

    • SubRon7 profile image

      James W. Nelson 6 years ago from eastern North Dakota

      Another interesting hub, Carolee. I've heard about drinking vinegar but haven't tried. I like the idea of 2 tbspoons/cup of water. Whenever I open a jar of pickles I will "sip" the juice, like a half a teaspoon at a time.

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hi Stephanie, apple cider is the most popular and easier on the palate, that's why it is widely recommended. I also use vinegar for all my dressings and in certain dishes as well. Thanks for stopping by.

    • StephanieBCrosby profile image

      Stephanie Bradberry 6 years ago from New Jersey

      I use apple cider vinegar as part of my olive oil, salt, Stevia dressing for all my salads. But I never drank it outright. That seems like it would sting and be quite astringent. However, I did just read a folk remedy in my nautropathy studies that uses water, apple cider vinegar, and honey. I never even considered white distilled vinegar for health purposes because everyone I talk to says organic apple cider vinegar.

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hi Ciel, I don't drink vinegar much but I know it make my stomach feel good and it relieves gas too, but I do use it a lot for salads.

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hey Susan, Apple cider does taste better than white vinegar. I personally like rice or red wine vinegars.

    • Ciel Clark profile image

      Ciel Clark 6 years ago from USA

      I love apple cider vinegar! No, don't drink it straight, yikes. Put a couple of spoonfuls in a small glass of water, drink it quickly and follow with a big glass of water. I use the raw organic unfiltered type and it seems to have helped with weight loss and against heartburn. Good hub on a good subject! CC

    • Just Ask Susan profile image

      Susan Zutautas 6 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      I drink organic apple cider vinegar straight up. I really don't mind the taste of it at all.

    • Cardisa profile image

      Carolee Samuda 6 years ago from Jamaica

      Hi CristeinS, what I have discovered in my research is that in the various cultures different kinds of vinegars are consumed. For instance the rice vinegar is used in Asia because it's derived from rice wine. There is another that is made from Sake and that too is used in Japan. Apple Cider is mostly used in the US and Europe. White vinegar is a little more acidic but still can be drunk.

    • ChristinS profile image

      Christin Sander 6 years ago from Midwest

      Interesting - I've never heard of drinking white vinegar for health reasons, only apple cider vinegar which I have used with good success (in capsule form) I can't drink it straight bleh.


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