We all celebrate holidays with our loved ones and enjoy everyone’s presence and what makes the gathering more special and exciting is the variety and wide range of food we altogether enjoy. But study showed that majority of the food prepared during holiday season is mostly loaded with high fat, refined carbohydrates and sugary beverages with very few whole food, plant based variety. We’ll we all can evidently witness how much calories we eat every time Christmas and New Year comes. It’s the best time to enjoy our favorite recipe and desserts with special people around. But are we also aware that this season was also carefully studied by researchers as they are so concerned about the direct increased incidence of heart attack, stroke, and high blood sugar that follows the season of celebration? Yes, it is indeed the time when excess levels of triglycerides and sugar builds up and cause symptoms in the next few hours after enjoying the pasta, cakes, ice cream and soda.
But you may say “I’ve only got to eat all I want this season!” It might not be our everyday choice of food I agree, but you see, it was also established that every meal really counts. When the body is already at the peak of everything and can just handle a little bit more push before an attack happens, would you even know that the single meal you’re looking forward to would determine your fate? The truth is, we’ll never know.
After ingesting a highly processed, calorie-dense diet, a great spike in blood glucose and lipids happens which is also called post-prandial dysmetabolism. With the increase in oxidative stress brought about by that single meal, a direct proportional increase in glucose and triglycerides immediately follows. The resulting transient increase in free radicals acutely triggers dreadful atherogenic consequences with initial inflammation followed by endothelial dysfunction, hypercoagulability (thickening of blood) and sympathetic hyperactivity thus, the increase risk for heart attack and stroke. We have to take note that this sequence of events doesn’t only happens in patients with diabetes but even with nondiabetic individuals.
Our body has it’s own coping mechanism in neutralizing and adjusting imbalances caused by our practices, diet and lifestyle. It has an amazing capacity to preserve itself more than we ever know. But can’t we also do something to at least help our organs somehow? After ingesting every delicious sugar and cholesterol loaded food, is there anything we plan to take to help our body out so it won’t damage our blood vessels as much?
Since it was already known that a spike in blood sugar after meal causes arterial dysfunction and thus increasing mortality from heart attack and stroke, what can we do after the swallows? Here are some of the reliable studies we can refer to that suggest one best option to lower triglycerides and blood sugar after meal.
A study conducted in Kansas City, Missouri entitled Dietary Strategies for Improving Post-Prandial Glucose, Lipids, Inflammation and Cardiovascular Health showed that the consumption of vinegar with meals can decrease triglyceride level within an hour after meal, including decrease in blood sugar and the potential increase in insulin level offering best adjunct management to blunt high blood sugar complications. The use of vinegar as home remedy for diabetes was found very successful before the advent of antihyperglycemic drugs and was finally put to the test in 1988 by Dr. James H. O’Keefe and his group. The effect is mostly caused by the acetic acid that slows down gastric emptying which delays absorption of carbohydrates and prolongs satiety as 1-2 tablespoons of vinegar is incorporated with the meal.
Another study published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics showed that Vinegar ingestion significantly reduced 60 minute glucose response to high glucose meal by 54%. Isn’t it a huge help after all? This study showed that we only need 4 teaspoons of apple cider vinegar diluted in water taken with meal to experience the benefit.
So, the help is also right there at the kitchen. Pick that bottle of vinegar and place it on the table so you’ll not forget to take it after enjoying your favorite dessert this holiday season. But please keep in mind that whole plant based food including grains, legumes, fruits and vegetables are best option to alter effects of high calorie-dense food. Remember that every meal counts… Happy Holidays Everyone!