Made from Trebbiano and/or Lambrusco grapes, balsamic vinegar is well known for its rich flavor and velvety black color. It is fermented in various kinds of wooden barrels, much like wine, and the taste of balsamic vinegar intensifies the longer it is aged.
The thicker and more intense the flavor becomes, the less you need to use to supply a taste boost. Balsamic vinegar offers a number of health benefits, though the serving size is small. The health benefits of balsamic vinegar are extensive and popular among health communities. Here are just a few reasons to use balsamic vinegar for its nutritional value.
It Has Antioxidants that Help Boost the Immune System
Balsamic vinegar is packed with antioxidants which help prevent chronic illnesses and boosts the immune system. It also helps destroy free radicals in the body to protect the cells from destruction.
Reduces Risk For Heart Attacks
In a 2010 study published in the "Journal of Nutritional Science and Vitaminology," findings state that polyphenols found in balsamic vinegar stop the oxidation of LDL cholesterol that blocks arteries that cause clogging and hardening. Since balsamic vinegar is also low in cholesterol, it can reduce the risk of heart attacks.
Beneficial For Blood Pressure
According to a study published in "Medscape General Medicine" in 2006, researchers found that balsamic vinegar reduced the hardening of arteries, also known as atherosclerosis. The vinegar is also low in sodium, which reduced blood pressure levels to enhance heart health, according to Natural News.
Because of this, balsamic vinegar also lowers and stabilizes blood pressure levels. Researchers in the study found that those who regularly consumed vinegar exhibited lower systolic blood pressure levels. However, further study on humans is required, as this study was initially animal-based.
Low Calories And Enhances Metabolism For Weight Loss
1 tablespoon of balsamic vinegar offers only 10 calories. The vinegar also improves metabolism since polyphenols found in the vinegar breaks protein down into smaller amino acids.
With balsamic vinegar, a little goes a long way. Use 1 tablespoon or not when adding balsamic vinegar to salad dressings, sauces or even soups.
The same size serving also contains a minimal amount of fat and less than 3 grams each of carbohydrates, including sugar. Aside from its ability to enhance metabolism, balsamic vinegar also has the ability to suppress the appetite. Since the vinegar also uses calories from grapes' sugar content, it is a great alternative to fatty dressings full of mayonnaise.
Stabilizes Blood Glucose
Balsamic vinegar is low on the glycemic index, which allows people to feel full for a longer period of time. Studies show that eating three to four tablespoons of balsamic vinegar daily can also enhance insulin sensitivity, which can lead to better diabetes control.
Balsamic vinegar improves digestion as it contains polyphenols, which encourage pepsin enzyme activity in the body. The digestive enzyme pepsin stimulates protein break down into amino acids to assist the intestines in absorbing the amino acids.