Is Apple Cider Good for Diabetics?


Quick Answer

Apple cider vinegar is purported to hinder the body's absorption of starches, reports WebMD, but the issue is controversial in the medical community. While Dr. Carol Johnston believes apple cider vinegar has clear anti-glycemic effects, Dr. Michael Dansinger states it cannot substitute for diet and lifestyle changes.

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Full Answer

By interfering with the absorption of starches, apple cider vinegar is believed to help prevent the raising of blood sugar levels, according to WebMD. The undigested starches feed good intestinal bacteria that promote gastrointestinal health.

However, apple cider vinegar is very acidic and even when diluted can put unnecessary strain on the kidneys and bones, states WebMD. Many diabetic patients also have gastroparesis, a condition in which the stomach empties itself slowly. Apple cider vinegar is associated loosely with an exacerbation of gastroparesis. It should never substitute for diabetes medication and, if used to keep blood sugar levels low, always be a supplement in an overall treatment plan.

If using apple cider vinegar, dilute 1 or 2 tablespoons in a large glass of water and sip it slowly, preferably taking it with a meal, recommends WebMD. This prevents the acidity from damaging tooth enamel or the esophagus. Unfiltered apple cider vinegar is recommended; its contents contain beneficial probiotics and other helpful bacteria that support immune system health.

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