It’s surprising how many kinds of vinegars are on the market! Beyond traditional distilled vinegar and all-natural apple cider vinegar, there are specialty gourmet varieties. You can find options such as black fig or pear vinegar. In fact, you can make vinegar out of anything that contains natural sugars!
Vinegar makers use a 2-step process to create their vinegars. First, they ferment the juice, using yeast to convert the sugar into alcohol. Then, a second fermentation process occurs to turn the alcohol into acid. This acid is responsible for vinegar’s famously strong taste, which also makes them a great culinary tool! But did you know they are also great for your health?
Vinegars have a variety of health benefits, from stabilizing blood sugar to providing antioxidants. We picked 5 SkinnyMs. approved vinegars that are a must-have in any healthy kitchen. They’re full of both flavor and health! Read ahead to find out how each of these vinegars can benefit you.
1. Apple Cider Vinegar
The most famous healthy vinegar is probably apple cider vinegar. It’s a staple in many clean-eating households because its health benefits are scientifically proven! Researchers have documented apple cider vinegar’s anti-glycemic effects. This means that it slows down or stops the breakdown of certain carbs, which prevents blood sugar spikes and perhaps even supporting weight loss.
Look for unfiltered apple cider vinegar. This kind of vinegar has a little bit of cloudiness. The cloudiness is from probiotics and other good bacteria that help keep you healthy from the inside out.
2. Balsamic Vinegar
Balsamic vinegar is made from reduced grape juice, so it contains all the vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants from the fruit. This makes it one of the healthiest, most nutritious dressings you will ever encounter. Polyphenols are among the many antioxidants in balsamic vinegar. These compounds are believed to prevent heat disease and cancer.
Look for balsamic vinegar that lists “grape must” in its ingredient list, and does not list coloring. Products that contain coloring are likely imitations made from cheaper vinegars with added dye to look like balsamic.
3. Rice Vinegar
Natural rice vinegar has no calories and no sodium, which makes it a super healthy way to flavor dishes. Additionally, phenolic compounds from the rice are present in the vinegar. Plants use phenolic compounds for self-preservation. However, it has different benefits in humans. Researchers believe phenolics might play a role in protecting the body from cancer and free-radicals.
Look for natural rice vinegar with no coloring. You can use it in dressings and marinades.
4. Red Wine Vinegar
Think of red wine vinegar as wine without alcohol. It has all the anti-aging antioxidants, but without the high calories. Red wine vinegar contains resveratol, a natural phenol found in grapes. Although most research on resveratol is still ongoing, studies show promising results. Researchers are studying the compound as a possible treatment for type-2 diabetes, skin tumors, gastrointestinal tumors, Alzheimer’s, and even heart disease.
In addition to salad dressings, you can use red wine vinegar as a marinade, or to enhance flavors in chili.
5. Distilled White Vinegar
Last, but not least, is regular white vinegar. We love it, since it’s the most common and most versatile vinegar. Used in salads, marinades, and even in pickles, white vinegar may help you control your blood sugar. Because of its high acidity, white vinegar can also be used to treat certain skin conditions. Finally, apply topically to help relieve itching and treat warts.
Next time you try one of these vinegars, let us know how you used it in the comments!