Vinegar lacks antiglycemic action on enteral carbohydrate absorption in human subjects

Nutr Res. 2009 Dec;29(12):846-9. doi: 10.1016/j.nutres.2009.10.021.


The antiglycemic effects of vinegar have been known for more than a century and have been demonstrated in animal as well as human studies. Although the exact mechanism of vinegar action is not known, several possibilities have been proposed including suppression of disaccharidase activity, delayed gastric emptying, enhanced glucose uptake in the periphery and conversion to glycogen, and increased satiety. We hypothesized that by suppressing endogenous insulin secretion, we could estimate the glucose absorption rate from an oral carbohydrate load and determine the effects of vinegar ingestion on this rate. To do so, 5 subjects had 4 studies at 1-week intervals, randomly receiving placebo twice (60 mL water) and vinegar twice (20 mL apple cider vinegar, 40 mL water), followed 2 minutes later by a meal of mashed potatoes (0.75 g carbohydrate per kilogram body weight) that was consumed over 20 minutes. At the beginning of the meal, an oral octreotide/insulin suppression test (25-microg bolus octreotide; 180 minute infusion 5 mU/m(2) body surface area per minute regular human insulin, and 0.5 microg/min octreotide) was begun. Blood samples for insulin and glucose were drawn at 20-minute intervals. The oral octreotide/insulin suppression test suppressed endogenous insulin secretion for the first 100 minutes of the study. During this time, the rate of rise of glucose was modestly but significantly (P = .01) greater after vinegar ingestion compared to placebo, suggesting that vinegar does not act to decrease glycemia by interference with enteral carbohydrate absorption.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Acetic Acid / metabolism*
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Area Under Curve
  • Blood Glucose / analysis
  • Diagnostic Techniques, Endocrine
  • Dietary Carbohydrates / metabolism*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Hypoglycemic Agents / metabolism*
  • Infusions, Intravenous
  • Insulin / administration & dosage
  • Insulin / blood
  • Insulin / pharmacology
  • Insulin Antagonists / pharmacology
  • Intestinal Absorption*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Octreotide / pharmacology


  • Blood Glucose
  • Dietary Carbohydrates
  • Hypoglycemic Agents
  • Insulin
  • Insulin Antagonists
  • Acetic Acid
  • Octreotide