Best supplements for diabetes: Apple cider vinegar may lower blood sugar
This Morning: Type 2 diabetes can be 'devastating' says expert
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The store cupboard staple has been shown to improve insulin sensitivity and to lower blood sugar levels. Plus, it’s even available in supplement form. How credible is the research? A team of researchers from the department of nutrition at Arizona State University conducted an investigation into the matter. Their experiments involved 19 non-diabetic subjects, eight of whom were insulin sensitive and 11 who were insulin resistant, and 10 diabetic subjects.
All participants were not taking medication for diabetes at the time of the trial.
Fasting subjects were randomly assigned to consume the vinegar or placebo drink.
The vinegar drink consisted of 20g apple cider vinegar, 40g water, and 1tsp saccharine (i.e. artificial sweetener).
Two minutes after consuming the vinegar or placebo, participants then ate the test meal.
The test meal consisted of a white bagel, butter, and orange juice – totalling to 87g of carbohydrates. The crossover trial was conducted one week later.
Blood glucose samples were collected at fasting, 30 minutes and 60 minutes following the meal.
During fasting, the blood glucose concentrations were elevated in the diabetes group.
The researchers noted: “Compared with placebo, vinegar ingestion raised insulin sensitivity during the 60-minute post-meal interval in insulin-resistant subjects.”
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Those with diabetes also saw an improvement in insulin sensitivity after consuming vinegar compared to placebo, although it was only slight.
Other researchers from the University of Milan conducted a small study, consisting of five healthy people.
They noted that vinegar reduced blood sugar levels by 31.4 percent after eating 50g of bread.
This research has clear limitations, such as a tiny sample size, testing the blood sugar levels of non-diabetics only.
The global diabetes community also cited research that showed apple cider vinegar can significantly reduce post-meal blood glucose.
The authors noted “the importance of maintaining acceptable blood glucose concentrations” for diabetics.
“There is much interest in identifying foods and diet patterns that will help individuals with diabetes manage their condition,” they added.
For their investigation, participants followed a standardised meal plan for two days with one important difference.
Some consumed two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar before bedtime with one ounce of cheese.
The others consumed water with an ounce of cheese before bedtime; there was a “three to five-day washout period” before the participants swapped over.
It found that consuming apple cider vinegar at bedtime “can help impact waking glucose concentrations in type 2 diabetes favourably”.
Whilst apple cider vinegar can be beneficial in managing diabetes, the most effective method is to avoid refined carbohydrates and sugar.
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