Alissa's Fitness Blog

Alissa's Diabetes and Fitness Blog


Discussion of Diet and Fitness as a tool to manage Diabetes

Alissa interviewed Dr. Blevins, M.D., Endocrinologist, Texas Diabetes & Endocrinology on the effects of balsamic vinegar on blood sugar

Alissa:  For the last two weeks, I've experienced my blood sugars increase and I realized today after doing some research it was balsamic vinegar.  How does balsamic vinegar affect blood sugar?  Do you recommend using it and how much should you use if you use it?

Dr. Blevins:  Balsamic Vinegar does certainly have calories and it depends on how much you use.  Tell me this – how much were you using?

Alissa:  I use the big bottles you get at Costco – I was using a bottle every 4 days, so probably a quarter bottle a day

Dr. Blevins: I have to admit I don’t know what those bottle look like but, how much is in a bottle? 

Alissa: Let me check… 1 liter

Dr Blevins:  Vinegar can be formulated in different ways, but usually a cup is about 40 grams of carbs or so, but what does it say on the label?

Alissa:1 tablespoon has 2 grams of carbs and 10 calories and 2 grams of sugar

Dr Blevins: A liter is 1000 CCs, so you’re talking about 70 tablespoons.  There’s definitely carb in balsamic vinegar.  The story here has more to do with being very careful about food and look at the label carefully. 

Alissa: Yes

Dr Blevins:  It’s low fat and that’s good, but it’s pretty high in sugar.  It’s liquid, readily absorbable, and it could spike your sugar since it does have a lot of sugar.  So 1 tablespoon is 2 grams, and you’re taking 250 ccs/day, a quarter of the bottle per day.  The math on that would be about 17 tablespoons, so you’re getting mid-30s of grams of carb per day.  That’s quite a bit of quickly, readily absorbable carb.

Alissa: Yes, I’m cutting it out of my diet permanently!

Dr Blevins: Although it’s not hidden, I think the perception many people would have is the same as yours which is that it’s not a high carb source.

Showing 1 Comment

Maria 9 years ago

I have definitely cut out balsamic vinegar, especially during prep, even though I know a lot of competitors use it. I substitute coconut vinegar (found I the gluten free section at HEB if you are in Texas) and it is 0 cal, 0 sugar, 0 fat, and no sodium.

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