Thursday, March 10, 2016

Vinegar Craving

Most of my life I've craved vinegar. I love pickles, pasta fazul with lots of vinegar, and vinegar in water. Salt and vinegar potato chips. During the summer we make sweet pickles--one cup water, one cup sugar, one cup vinegar and fresh cucumbers.

Heaven! We just finished up a batch (the last of the season, *sigh*) and then I drank the juice, although it's too sweet for me.

Out of curiosity I looked up vinegar cravings. A lot of women (it is apparently mostly women) get this craving at puberty. Those men who crave vinegar this way it's a lifelong thing.

The information was quite interesting, and absolutely anecdotal. For most of the women who had this craving, it's strongest the week before their period starts. A lot of them craved vinegar (or pickles) during pregnancy and then the craving went away. Several mentioned the fact that they don't like sweet foods (which applies in my case as well) and many were also lactose intolerant.

I know that people low on potassium (which is found in vinegar) get a lot of cramps. That was another similarity I noticed--many of these people exercise a great deal, and get cramps when they do. Several were marathon runners. When you exercise a lot, potassium and calcium are leached from the muscles if there's not enough in the system, which results in cramps.

Giving blood does the same, for some people (it does for me), but only if the nutrient levels in the blood were too low to start with. Vinegar might balance that. Vinegar also increases the absorption of calcium as well as a number of other essential nutrients.

Another possibility mentioned was an acid/base imbalance. Someone also mentioned the ability of vinegar to balance insulin levels (due to its ability to prevent the absorption of sugars).

Doctors say there's no physiological reason for the craving since vinegar is so low in nutrients, but it's important to remember that many people who crave vinegar aren't just taking a tablespoon (the dose the RDA values are calculated on) but drinking the stuff. Vinegar contains trace amounts of calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and iron. So if someone drinks a cup of vinegar they're getting significant amounts of these nutrients. I'm guessing that in most cases when people crave vinegar it's providing missing nutrients and trace minerals, but there are lots of possibilities here.

Whatever the reason, I try to listen to what my body tells me--if it says it wants vinegar and vinegar is available, that's what it will get!

121 comments:

  1. Wow! Here I am, my family making mild jokes about me craving vinegar/pickle juice or even mustard - and about my aversion to candy, especially chocolate - and it turns out I might have a deficiency! How interesting.

    I used to love candy, occasionally I'll eat a sour gummy worm - but just one. One chocolate chip now, though, is enough to make me not even look at candy for a month.

    I'm also mildly lactose intolerant. A glass of milk or bowl of cereal is no longer an option for me.

    I've been bitter-cravey for almost six years, now.

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    1. I know I'm calcium deficient (I have to take a double dose just to break even after I give blood) and most times I can't stand sugar. Ironically I also crave chocolate, although I mostly go after bitter chocolate because the other is just too sweet.

      Thanks for visiting!

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  2. i often have a vinegar craving too! i mentioned this to my mother, and she said vinegar cuts grease, and that maybe my body is telling me i should limit my fat intake. this turned out to be amazing advice because i have since found out i have gallstones... i get gallbladder attacks if my fat intake is too high!

    not sure what a doctor would say about all of this, but i know what you mean when you say listen to what your body is telling you!

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    1. Doctors basically say it's psychosomatic. "There's no physiological reason..." blah, blah, blah. There is always a physiological reason, but it might not be one that current medical science is advanced enough to detect.

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  3. I too crave vinegar in any form (pickles, S&V crisps, mustard etc), and have done ever since I was a young child. I have always had a very fast metabolism, and been lactose intolerant. I don't like chocolate, and prefer savory to sweet foods, but go through phases when I eat candy.

    I recently found a great snack that satisfies my vinegar cravings. I bring to the boil beans (lima or chickpeas) in vinegar, then turn off the stove and let soak for 30 mins. Then I dry fry or bake them coated in a little olive oil. They are so delicious! Very vinigary- much better than salt & vinegar crisps!

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    1. That's a good idea. I've put vinegar on beans a lot of times, but I've never tried cooking them in it. :) Thanks!

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    2. Wow just figured I was the only one in North America that doused all foods in vinegar and minimal sea salt as well. I have many health issues - type 1 diabetes almost 44 years, celiac disease as well as thyroid problems.. Any recommendations/advise would be appreciated....

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    3. Not by a long shot. I get about 200 hits per week on this particular post, so it's obviously something that affects a lot of people. It might be more difficult for you to satisfy this particular craving, since a lot of vinegar is made from wheat. But different types of vinegar (apple cider vinegar, for example) not only are gluten free but also have higher levels of nutrients than the white vinegar most people use.

      The basic advice goes for anyone--avoid refined white flours, refined sugar, white rice and energy drinks. As a type 1 diabetic you probably have that one down to a science.

      I don't know enough about these disorders to talk about them, but I'll see what I can find and consider doing a followup.

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    4. I find this reply so interesting, I am lactose I tolerant with a very fast metabolism but for as long as I can remember I've always craved vinegar as well... I have given blood before but I usually get quite light headed...

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  4. As a male, I have craved vinegar....as a small boy if asked, "a cookie or, a pickle?" Always a pickle! I think it was my bodies defense against high blood sugar. A year ago I stopped all the pickles and vinegar for health reasons, and my blood sugars shot up super high....I do 2 tablespoons of ACV and eat all my favorite pickled stuff, I'm back to normal. Vinegar is some powerful stuff in my book.

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    1. It's good for a lot of things. I use it as an insect spray, for cleaning, and today...ta da! Drinking it again! :)

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    2. I don't know If I'm the only one, but I like to drink straight Italian Dressing and that's said to have a lot of vinegar. I like to drink it straight along with dill pickles, salt and vinegar chips, anything that involves vinegar! And I think it's evolved into a problem... my stomach just isn't the same as it used to be (for I had a lot of vinegar cravings as a child) and I've been throwing up everything in my stomach, I swear it's just bloody awful.

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    3. @Lesteatstheworld Your stomach is made to handle acid much stronger than the vinegar we normally have access to. While it's possible that the vinegar is causing the problem I would suggest you get it checked. My guess is that it's something else.

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    4. I have always craved salty over sweet. As a tween I was overwhelmed with stress and developed a chronic stomach ailment that baffled even specialists.

      I could not keep anything down even water after many tests some very invasive it was found that I had a gastric ulcer or gastritis which mist think is gas but it is an acid found that would not let my stomach accept or dissolve/digest food. I would vomit.

      For an example: My doctor gave me a prescribed,chalky, "horse pill" [it was huge]. Again, my stomach would not digest or obviously could not digest it; I vomited it over 20 minutes later barely dissolved....

      The amount of acid in my stomach encapsulated the pill.

      The acid in my stomach would not let this pill dissolve!

      Crazy. Not so.
      Are bodies are made up of acids and alkaline much the same as a battery.

      Physiology makes sense.

      Anyone have anything to contribute as I must have some spicy, sweet butter pickles now!

      Kindest

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    5. Unfortunately, no, nothing to contribute. I just finished the fresh sweet pickles, and drank the juice!

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  5. My rule is if a doctor says it, it probably isn't true. I only want brine, hot sauce, and vinegar (to drink) when I'm pregnant. And I DRINK it. And it's a NEED. If I think about it, my mouth literally waters. I have had to have my hubby throw away jalapeño brine, peperoncini brine.... I knowingly put myself through pain by making my mouth and... ahem... other openings burn. It's not a choice! So I must be missing SOMETHING. Or maybe I'm just another crazy preggo... ;) hahaha. I have heard of a link between vinny and having yeast overgrowth which I have always struggled with!

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    1. I agree. There's a reason that doctors "practice."

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  6. and here I was thinking I was a weirdo! I crave the heck out of vinegar and salt too, and it's happened almost all my life. Even right now I'm craving the heck out of some apple cider vinegar.
    I love wakame salad too and I'm not huge on the sweet but the vinegary flavor mmmmm. It drives me nuts too!

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    1. Not weird at all. I continue to be surprised at how many hits I get on this topic.

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  7. I've just recently gotten up and about after breaking my ankle and having surgery. And I want vinegar on everything. I had some red wine vinegar on hand and the bottle was gone in a week or two of me fending for myself. Reading your post, it makes sense! I also craved tomatoes in any acidic (and usually vinegary) form when I was pregnant with my daughter.

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    1. Pregnancy is another one. It plays havoc with your acid/base balance. I still think the biggest one is micro-nutrients, though.

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  8. This article is spot on! I am mildly lactose intolerant and am very physically active. I crave vinegar most often when I have been eating a lot of sugar or right before my period. I don't get yeast infections very often but I think that is because if one is coming on I go crazy with garlic (doubling what I cook with and taking garlic pills).

    My favorite ways to eat vinegar: kimchi, kombucha, rice with rice vinegar, and apple cider vinegar diluted (one part water, one part acv, one part fruit juice). Happy eating!

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    1. Garlic is another favorite. I harvested several pounds this spring, so hopefully I'll have enough to last through the winter.

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    2. Sounds to me like what you should try is pickled garlic. I discovered it this summer when a friend brought out a jar of pickled 'medley' (garlic & jalapenos) from his grandmother. It was heavenly! Like all of my cravings in one tiny, delicious package.

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    3. Sounds like a match, all right. :)

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    4. Just this week I opened up the bottle of pickled garlic I made last spring--oh, my heavens! I could crunch down on that stuff all day! The vinegar flavor, and the garlic is still crisp but just slightly "diluted." The flavor is different from regular garlic.

      Now to get some peppers to add to it.

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  9. I have enjoyed dill pickles and their juice for a long time. However, after I had a heart attack and was placed on a low sodium diet, I find the vinegar taste, takes the place of salt for flavoring. I have been craving apple cider vinegar and drink it with ice daily. It makes the no added salt diet bearable. It actually tastes salty to my taste buds. I particularly enjoy it as a salad dressing. I mix minced, jarred garlic, a small amount( tsp.) Of fat free ranch, pepper and apple cider vinegar. Delicious !

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    1. Interesting that vinegar would fill that need. It makes sense, since vinegar is high in several salt-like compounds that aren't sodium.

      I need to try that recipe.

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    2. I am addicted to vinegar also and found a new favorite. Pomegranate red wine vinegar. Soooooooo good!!!!! For all you salad lovers a little Dijon mustard in the vinegar is really tasty.

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    3. Ranch dressing, garlic powder (or fresh), black pepper and Apple Cider vinegar tossed together is the BEST salad dressing.

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  10. I'm not alone! I love pickles of any kind, Jalapeño's, chilli peppers, gherkins, cucumbers, garlic, Indian pickles the sour ones, not the sweet ones, Salsa's... you name it, if it's pickled, it's amazing. I frequently use vinegars on salads, fish, any cooking really that needs pepping up! I also drink Vinegar. Lemons and chillis are my other vices. I think I just crave really punchy flavours.

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    1. No, you're not alone! :) Thanks for visiting!

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  11. Haha, as I am reading this I just finished a slice of bread with sun dried tomatoes humus and... Vinegar! And guess what? My legs are all cramped up from running the other day. I honestly never made that connection before! and I am lactose intolerant too.

    Wonder what it all means - but I doubt any doctor will find out first! They seem to be just barely catching up to all the traditional remedies that have been proven effective in the past few decades, so I wouldn't hold my breath waiting... If you crave it, eat it!

    One thing I would recommend to all vinegar cravers is that they switch to balsamic or cider vinegar since these seem to satisfy my cravings even more profoundly, presumably because they are more 'natural'(?)

    I don't buy the candida-vinegar craving connection personally though, because I had these cravings my whole life and only had candida once, years after I started making my first mustard and pickle sandwiches (mmmm!) as a kid. Lemon juice also hits the spot: the other day I put it on my pizza, not bad! Needless to say the balsamic also works great with that dish. Thank heavens for Italy!

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    1. The more "natural" vinegars (ACV, balsalmic, etc) have higher levels of nutrients because they haven't been processed as much. It also depends on what kind of material the vinegar is made of, because each fruit and vegetable has different amounts and kinds of nutrients. That supports the "missing nutrients" idea, because people with different nutrient deficiencies would prefer different kinds of vinegar.

      Thanks for visiting!

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  12. Just ate 2 hardboiled eggs doused in vinegar for breakfast and was thinking about what's wrong with this picture! Googled vinegar cravings and found you all! Thought it might have something to do with missing nutrients, too.

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    1. Absolutely nothing is wrong with this picture. Welcome to the vinegar club! :)

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  13. Finally decided to look this up, wow. I've got high metabolism, no sweet tooth but like chocolate n no lactose intolerance. I'm sitting here eating cucumbers soaked in vinegar w a bit of sea salt

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    1. Sounds like you found the right place. You should see the expressions when I finish up a batch of sweet pickles and down all the juice! It's SO good!

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    2. I crave vinegar,I seem to be able to smell and taste it all day. I have always loved vinegar and dill pickle juice is so good. When I was pregnant with both my boys I have to have vinegar chips for breakfast and pickles all day and cucumbers and vinegar too and on my French fries. Both my boys love vinegar as well. I am lactose intolerant and I have a Low Metabolism but I love my cottage cheese and I use vinegar chips and dip them cottage cheese.I have been over weight since I was 8 years old and nothing seems to help me lose weight. Everyone thinks I'm weird for drinking apple cider vinegar straight. I just started taking a water pill cause my feet and legs swell thanks to hypertension. I also have Neuropathy. My sugar highest was 112 or 124 so I don't have diabetes. My mom loved cucumbers and vinegar too.Thought I got sweaty and nauseated and felt weird and I don't know if it was from too much vinegar or not..

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  14. As I'm reading this, I'm eating dinner. Want to guess what's on my plate? Brats...tons of sauerkraut, mustard, pickles...and a salad covered in vinegar and lemon juice. If I start eating S&V chips, I will consume the whole bag. Like many of the commenters, I am lactose intolerant and have other digestive issues which limit what I can comfortable eat - so probably, there are some deficiencies there. The anecdote about exercise applies as well. Lots of dots connecting, here. :)

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    1. It's amazing what happens when a bunch of people start discussing anecdotal evidence. :) The dots seem quite close together at the moment, and each comment adds a few.

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  15. Thank you! Just thank you. I have thought I was going crazy. I have always craved vinegar, as a kid Saturday morning meant carrots cut up soaking in red wine vinegar...so good! But now, at 49, the cravings are tremendous and I thought I was losing it. it is so nice to hear I am not alone and do not have some crazy disease. As a type 2 diabetic I am going to try the ACV everyday and maybe this will help decrease the cravings as they are currently ruling my every thought.

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    1. Let me know if it works. There is so much we don't know about the human body and how it works. I'm curious, though--is it just vinegar you crave, or particular types of vinegar? For me all vinegar smells fantastic, although I usually only use white because that's what I have.

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  16. Wow, I can eat sauerkraut at every meal! Love love love honey mustard and as well as carrots soaked in rice vinegar. That is my drug of choice. Glad I'm not alone.

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    1. When I did this post I pretty much thought I was the only one...then I started researching it. :)

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  17. Funny my Diabetic mother in law can't stand vinegar, she says it hurts her stomach. My husband hates it too. I add apple cider vinegar to pretty much all of my food! I just love vinegar and always have.

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    1. Vinegar really could cause stomach problems if there's any kind of acid-base imbalance.

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  18. Love all the comments! I HAVE ALWAYS loved viniger..I don't eat red meat , however I used to and still craved viniger. My cravings stopped for awhile and since over holiday season was eating sugar which normally I don't
    . -Also chocolate - I work out quite regularly. Not allot of dairy, So yes it seems all of this is somehow linked! Thank-you everyone. .

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    1. Nutrition is much more important to health than most people think. My guess is that many of our problems are caused more by malnutrition (or overabundance) and could be fixed by changing our eating habits.

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  19. I appear to be the opposite of everyone else! -- Can't stand pickles, don't ordinarily like anything bitter. SWEETS are definitely my thing! But I've had the most intense craving for S&V chips, so I picked some up while grocery shopping. Same thing this morning, so I ate a couple at breakfast. And again at lunch! I'm also really, really craving a fizzy drink, but I don't ever have sodas. Started totally out of the blue! BTW, I'm female, but NOT pregnant. :)

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    1. I would be interested to know if this craving continues, or if it goes away after a while. The triggers (physical, emotional, etc) might be interesting as well.

      It would be rather fun, to follow that kind of thing from beginning to end.

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    2. Just going back through the old comments, and it occurred to me to tell a story. A few weeks ago I decided I needed to eliminate cheese from my diet, and went cold turkey. A week later I was sleeping 8 to 10 hours a day, really disturbed sleep with odd dreams, always hungry (and thirsty!) waking up exhausted, etc. And I finally realized that I'd cut out my main source of both protein and calcium! It's amazing what a simple deficiency can do. Maybe you're missing something, or made a recent change to your diet?

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  20. Hello, friends! I thought I was the only one. Reading what you all wrote it was like "yep," "yep," "yep that too." So glad I'm not the only one!!! The only thing is I'm not lactose intolerant that I know of. I just got done eating everything in sight smothered in homemade honey mustard. I eat pickles, any pickled veggie, salt and vinegar chips, lemons/limes, sauces, and vinegar on the regular! I used to eat mustard when I was little too. I have always preferred tangy and savory foods and very rarely crave anything sweet. Candy doesn't get touched. I wonder what our "missing nutrients" could be besides potassium?? Very intriguing! Thanks for your fascinating post. :)

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    1. A lot of people are mildly lactose intolerant without being aware of it. But my guess is that "lactose intolerance" is another symptom of whatever is going on. People's bodies behave different ways to the same things.

      Vinegar (particularly fruit and vegetable vinegars) have many nutrients in trace amounts. On top of those mentioned above, most vinegars include trace amounts of sodium, selenium and magnesium. I didn't find anything on micro-nutrients, although the interest in them is growing.

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  21. When I was a maybe 13 or 14 I used to crave vinegar like crazy
    I actually would slice carrots up and put them in vinegar. I also love pickles:)

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    1. That's one similarity that I've begun to notice--a lot of those commenting eat carrots in vinegar. I wonder if there's a connection?

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  22. Wow so many crave vinegar! I always thought my family was mostly the only ones lol, I crave with vinegar so often , I put it on my cucumbers carrots lettuce apples fries and original regular chips and even tomatoes yum! My mom always tells me that my body is needing something then,and I am low on calcium I think.. thank you so much for this post,makes a lot of sence.

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    1. When I first posted this I was getting about 10 hits per week. It's now up above 200, and more every day. Yesterday 62. It seems to be a very common thing. I would never have expected this kind of response, but I'm glad to know I'm not alone!

      Last week I found cucumbers for $.69 each so I brought some home and made cucumber sweet pickles and then drank the juice. I will never get tired of that.

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  23. I have always craved vinegar. I love beetroot in vinegar, any Pickles, I eat mustard pickle straight from the jar, I have vinegar on eggs, bacon, salad, &'lots of other foods. When I get a craving, I also like HP sauce spread on bread. As a child my Mum used to send me to the shop where they sold malt vinegar from a barrel, & I used to take a large empty bottle to get refilled, & by the time I got home I had drunk a quarter of it. My Mum used to say, "you will dry your blood up", but that didn't stop me, I was addicted. I am 68 now & still have cravings but more so at certain times of the month, which I imagine is probably when my period would have been due. Who knows. I also read today that apple cider vinegar is good for reflux if taken in water every morning, as opposed to the omeprazole or Lanzoperazole. Might have to give it a try! Interesting blog. Thank you

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    1. Thank you for coming to visit. I love hearing people's stories, and seeing how it all starts to fit together.

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  24. Fascinating article and comments. I too have loved vinegar since I was a little kid. I used to eat lemons also as a snack after school. In addition to the support I love seeing all the new ways I can eat vinegar! I usually eat a lot of salad just as a medium to eat it, ha. My favorite 'recipe' is a can of drained beans in a vinegar bath, yum

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  25. Well, I'm new to this vinegar craving. I have never really like pickles until last year. Now I can't get enough! I wish you could buy just the pickle juice. Lol Now, for the past 3 weeks I'm craving more things with vinegar. I make a cucumber, tomato, onion salad with vinegar. I make homemade Cole slaw with extra vinegar. Gotta have pickles. Been eating sliced tomatoes and a couple green onions together. Now I want to make some pickled eggs. I have had severe RLS for 35 years and have been lactose intolerant for the same. I have had Type II Diabetes for the last 15 years. I'm curious to see what all this vinegar-enhanced food will do to my A1c level. But in the meantime, it's good to know I'm not the only weirdo. LOL Take care and vinegar ON!

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    1. I like that. Maybe that'll be my motto. "Vinegar on!" hehehe

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  26. I'm drinking a cup of red wine vinegar at the moment. I've craved vinegar as long as I can remember. I remember being a kid drinking vinegar from the glass or bowl after eating a snack of cucumbers, carrots, or raw broccoli in it. Apple cider and red wine vinegar are my favorite, but I also put hot pepper vinegar on rice and almost all vegetables and I use Apple cider vinegar in marinades for meats. I have noticed lately that I crave vinegar more after overeating, especially if it's a greasy meal. Interesting to know I'm not the only one drinking vinegar by the glass...

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    1. Vinegar does cut grease and prevent the absorption of sugars--maybe that's why you crave it more after overeating.

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  27. WOW! I thought I was crazy, medically ill, or both! Only to find out my 'secret' love of vinegar is perfectly normal! Well, normal to us 'VINGIES' lol. I put vinegar on everything. One must watch and make sure your balsamic is lead free though; there are sites that tell you which one's are or not. I did once splurge on a really expensive bottle of balasmic...onlyto consume the WHOLE THING in less than a week! Last time doing that, for sure!

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    1. I'm a Vingie now! Yipee!

      Or at least, you're no more crazy than anyone else here. :)

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  28. I have always loved pickles but I have realized that I love Sea Salt and Vinegar chips, as well as vinegar cucumbers with onions, and the tomato/onion/cucumber and vinegar salad. My most recent discoveries for vinegar were the mini corn [I added soy sauce and vinegar to make it sour-ish] cans in the international food section and pickled green beans. In fact, I told my grandmother that I liked the pickled green beans over regular canned green beans and she said she might make some for me this year {so exciting!}.

    Anyways, Lauren, THANK YOU for this blog post. It was the first on the Google search that I ran. I think it was something to do with "what does salt and vinegar cravings mean" (conflicting answers). I'm just glad to hear that I'm not going more crazy by saying I like vinegar flavor!

    I am sharing this with my Twitter friends. Maybe I can get the word out some more? :-D THANK YOU!

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    1. You're welcome. :) I write about whatever catches my fancy. I'm glad people like it.

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  29. I just came across this interesting blog while trying to figure out why I am craving vinegar foods so much lately. I have always loved pickles and salt and vinegar chips but never as much as I have this last month. I'm not pregnant so I know that is not the case but I do crave vinegar constantly it seems. I've been taking a diuretic for over 2 months now and I am 100% sure that is why I have these cravings. Diuretics cleanse the body of excess water and can cause the body to be low in potassium and sometimes even increase the amount of potassium in your body, depending on the type of diuretic being consumed. This fluctuation of potassium levels can easily be the cause of craving vinegar foods.

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    1. That's an interesting thought, and links vinegar cravings (again!) to vitamin and mineral imbalances. The potassium link is good too.

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  30. Just recently started craving vinegar more than normal.
    I made potato salad and put lots of onions and vinegar in. Sorry for the 11 others that had to eat it, I enjoyed it immensely. Still ate it for breakfast today.
    Had a vinegary salad last night and another for breakfast. Feel something is up but just had blood work and not 100% sure what it all means.
    Hopefully it passes but eating gherkins for breakfast was kinda fun.

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    1. When I'm feeling particularly mean I enjoy the expression of someone who's just found out I put vinegar in EVERYTHING. Vinegar on salad is the perfect dressing.

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  31. I used to only crave salt but for the past 8 months we have moved to the hot tropics and I frequently find myself craving vinegar on hot chips, pickles, or thousand island dressing. My issue is, I don't like vinegar! I tolerate a very small amount of salt and vinegar chips so it is weird I crave what I hate, and no I am not pregnant.

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    1. Interesting. Has your diet changed significantly since you moved? Do you find yourself hating it less, or is it loathing while you salivate?

      That would be really weird, to hate something and crave it at the same time. Like me and the sun. :)

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  32. This is me as well!!! I drink acv daily. I also eat vinegars such as rice vinegar on tomatoes, cucumbers etc. I used to love sweet and now only crave sour, spicy or savory. I al add o eat cayenne pepper and jalapeños on just about everything. Mustards and vinegerettes before any type of creamy sauce. I also love pickled aNutting from my garden. I also crave tuna. I Googled wondering if there was something I'm lacking and found this page. I do not eat greasy food or many carbs as well.

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  33. Same here! I gotta have vinegar! As a kid I would drink white vinegar out the bottle. I would sneak and do it because my mom only used it as a cleaning agent. Now i consume lots of pickles, mustard, hot sauce, and everything that's pickled. I am lactose intolerant (self diagnosed) and i absolutely hate chocolate, does not care for sweets!

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    1. What about dark chocolate? I currently have a dozen gallon bottles of vinegar in the basement, waiting to be rotated! :) It's good for so many things, but I mainly drink it.

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    2. I crave pickles, pepperonchinis, pickled jalapeños and just all salty/pickled/sour foods.. when my bf isn't looking I even drink the pickled juice! (Shhhh) I rarely crave sweets or candy, also active and lactose intolerant, but I might murder someone standing between me and tortilla chips.

      I stopped eating pickles for awhile because I thought it was unhealthy, and then I started madly craving sour candy (which was less satisfying and left me feeling gross and bloated). My bf recently told me that my "flavor" changes for the better when I am indulging those cravings and so I am back to eating pickled things again. Cheers!

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    3. Now THAT is funny. He likes spicy, huh? :)

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  34. I just found a completely unexpected bottle of pickle juice in the refrigerator and immediately started salivating. My first impulse was to down the whole thing, but I restrained myself. :)

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  35. So, I found this post, and glad I did. I crave vinegar only on occasion, I love sweets and I too am mildly lactose intolerant and do crave hot/spicy things occasionally too. I suspect (just from other research in the past) that it is related to the ph balance in the body and the candida levels. Candida is always always present and fluctuates according to the sugar levels in the body. I do experience significant hair loss (not alopeica thank goodness) but I think the vinegar craving is an indication of an out of balance ph level (ref low stomach acid in previous posts), thyroid and candida imbalance (as diabetics would experience). Just saying, your body knows and will tell you!

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    1. I've considered Ph balance as well, but there's very little research to confirm or deny for this topic. Since vinegar can prevent the absorption of sugars and fats, other things are very possible.

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  36. Found this post after Googling vinegar cravings. I've NEVER been a vinegar person - my preferred taste in favourite to least favourite order has always been savoury/greasy, spicy, sweet, salty, tangy/sour, bitter. Could never have s&v chips and pickles were my worst nightmare even though cucumber is my favourite vegetable. But I've been slowly coming around to the vinegary, tangy taste and I figured it was just my tastebuds changing over the last 2-3 years. It's not that I add it or seek it, but more that when there's vinegary food, I can now handle it and usually tend to enjoy it. But over the last 2-3 weeks I have been craving it like crazy. I still can't quite bring myself to drink it - diluted or not - although I think that's more of a mental thing than a palate thing. But things like s&v chips (crisps) have ended up in my trolley a few times, and last week when co-workers (mostly Brits) wanted to add vinegar to hot chips (chunky fries) I was the one encouraging them to pour more, more, more! I have a feeling my case is definitely health related - I've been stressed, sick, and eating badly as a result for about a month now. I've increased my red meat intake mostly due to being tired (don't usually have it except when I'm tired), but I think my body is saying that I need change my diet through this vinegar craving. It's interesting that people are relating it to hormonal aspects like pregnancy and periods, because my period is due soon. It'll be interesting to see if it comes in the next couple of days.

    When I was around 13, I moved to a new town and one new friend invited me over to her house. She snuck us into the kitchen and told me to keep an eye out for her mum. I was a bit nervous because this was clearly a sign of someone sneaking their parent's alcohol - I started getting the sweats when she opened one of the kitchen cupboard, looking around wildly - but the bottle of caramel brown liquid she picked up was malt vinegar. She started chugging it straight out of the bottle. My brother likes his sour things, but I had never seen anyone CHUGGING vinegar before like it was soda. Used to think she was nuts for it, but now I kind of understand. Interesting how extreme everyone's palates can be!

    Anyway, thanks for the post, esp because it's caused so many people to share their stories and cases!

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    1. You're welcome. It's a continuing astonishment to me to see how many people this affects--it's my most popular post.

      A lot of it does seem related to diet. I have found that I crave vinegar more when I haven't been eating right. I have to laugh at your friend, because this was obviously something common enough that her mother had told her to stop! Love it!

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  37. OK I just fell out! I've drank Apple Cider Vinegar for as long as I can remember. When I was pregnant it was sometimes twice daily. Incidentally, my son from that pregnancy loves anything pickled, or made with vinegar. But reading this amazed me....I drink 1/3rd to 1/2 cup vinegar mixed with a little water and sea salt 3-5 times a week. Normally at night. And almost all of what you said is me to a tee! I don't care for sweets, I'm lactose intolerant, although I don't run marathons, I do run. Because of this mangoes and bananas have long been a part of my diet to combat low potassium. Just unbelievable and really quite interesting the similarities many of us with this odd craving share! Thank you for the information!

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    1. You're welcome. :) The human body is so amazingly complex, we're just starting to achieve the first hints of understanding.

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  38. I thought I had some sort of ailiment .I'm very lactose intolerant. I put it on everything. Glad to see I'm not the only one.

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    1. Not the only one by a long shot! I almost feel like I'm part of a community with all this. I belong to the vingee club! :)

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  39. Excellent, I´m not alone. I love vinegar. Vinegar elevates almost any food. I have small bottle of vinegar in my handbag so I can improve any meal when eating out. I get odd looks for that. I´m lactose and gluten intolerant, I hate sweets and I love very spicy food.

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    1. It really does. I put some garlic in vinegar a few months ago and finally got around to trying it. It's amazing!

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  40. Thank you for this. I have been wondering if I was going crazy or not. I eat everything that is sour and or salty. I hate sweets. the only candy that I like is the Jolly Rancher Sours which most stores don't even sell. I literally eat a gallon of pickled pepperoncini a week. I just bought 10 gallons and hope that will be enough for a couple of months. I also crave lemons with salt, and dill pickles (I also drink the juice). I also take a shot of balsamic vinegar and olive oil every day just to keep the pipes clean. I have no stomach problems, some acid erosion on my teeth, and I am a diabetic thanks to poor genetics but it is managed by pills. I also avoid any white carby stuff so I mainly eat veg and meat. I have craved sour stuff since I was a child sneaking lemons and covering them with salt. After I ate all my Mother's lemons, I would go visit my next door neighbor and eat all of theirs. I am a 50 year old male so no pregnancy issues either. :)

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    1. Yep, looks like you belong to the club. :) I'm thinking of trying vinegar ferments with green tomatoes.

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  41. My brother and I used to sit at the kitchen table sipping malt vinegar mixed with salt and a drop of oil when we were kids - it was weird to most, but we understood each other! I still love a sip of wine vinegar with salt and a drop of olive oil nowadays (50 years later) - I am lactose intolerant, have a very irritable bowel, and prefer salty to sugary any day.
    Sometimes I worry about it, but always give in to it!
    I'm not sure it does me any harm, but can't imagine it does me any good with the salt for instance.... but the cocktail definitely requires salt!

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    1. That combination is interesting. I wonder how the salt affects the vinegar craving? Just table salt, I presume, so that would be sodium chloride.

      I can't help wondering if the lactose intolerance is cause, effect, or just something we all have in common. Maybe it's just so common in general that it hits most of the population and that shows in these numbers.

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  42. My father is Italian and comes from traditions of salads with oil and vinegar before lunch and dinner. So I was raised with consuming it regularly. I still love it and like many comments made here I am a very savory person. Sweets almost repulse me when I think about them. Nearly have of the contents of my fridge are pickled something. I love lime and salt. Salt and vinegar chips... spicy foods. I have no idea if I'm lactose intolerant as many here are but I know I don't do well with breads and pastas. My co-workers after comment on my breakfasts and lunches because I always have a hot sauce and pickles added to it. I could eat pickles and eggs with hot sauce for breaki and be in heaven!

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    1. It's amazing. I'm Italian too, so I know what you mean about the salads--olive oil and vinegar.

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  43. I love eating dill pickles and salty potato chips together. A pickle chip and a potato chip together... Aaaaah, lovely!

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    1. New ideas, new combinations. I love how this conversation keeps on giving! :)

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  44. Chocolates or vinegar? Vinegar please! I just finished a big bowl of salad with apple cyder vinegar dressing and it was sour and so good :)) I thought there is something wrong with me because I crave for it all the time, especially when I'm hungry and have it almost every day. Good to know I'm not the only one.

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    1. Judging just by the number of people who search this topic you're probably part of a small majority. :)

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  45. I eat everything with vinegar! Breakfast, lunch and DINNER! I love soaking my feet in vinegar and then eating my toenails. My boyfriend thought that was weird, but now I know he's the weird one! Thanks VINGIES!!!!!

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  46. I drink vinegar, salt, & pepper. I prefer the apple cider vinegar the most. I craved this as a young child and I still have the craving. It is good to know I'm not alone.

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    1. Nope, not alone. I have six big gallon bottles of vinegar in the basement. It's one thing I will NEVER be without! :)

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    2. I have been craving just plain apple cider vinegar all month long. I am post menopausal. I have a lot of heartburn in which the vinegar should help. For the last two days I have only been able to eat bland foods. What is going on with my system?

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    3. I can't give medical advice, but I'd suggest that you keep a symptom diary before you go to your doctor. You said you have only been able to eat bland foods--does that mean other foods don't taste good, that you throw up other foods, or something else? Then take that diary to your doctor for aid in diagnosing.

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  47. I have craved vinegar for as long as I can remember....you name it: if it had vinegar I was IN! Lately it's been pepperoncini, hot cherry peppers, and chili paste on everything. Pickles too, of course. If it's got juice, I'll usually drink it as well (or cook with it! I love putting pepperoncini juice in my brine for ribs. So good!)

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    1. Cooking with that kind of juice is fantastic. I'm salivating!

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  48. So cool I'm not the only one! I remember being a little girl and loving mustard on everything and all the other kids thinking it was gross. I've always drinken pickle juice too, in fact I'm salivating thinking about it! Pickled garlic is definitely on my list to make this week!

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    1. Pickled garlic is A-Maze-Ing! Thanks for visiting!

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  49. I have been curious my whole life. Started at menses and still crave all things vinegar. At different times though, have opened the fridge and saw the pickles and the juice looked more appealing. At least a handful of times have drank a lot of pickle juice, and not just during pregnancy. At times I can smell it sweat out through my feet. It has to be of some significance, something to do with a deficiency or overload. Some people use vinegar to clean, there must be something to that. Maybe it kills bad bacteria or something. I wish I could find out as my children have the same cravings.

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    1. There's lots of information out there, mostly from doctors who say it's all nonsense. Honestly, if your body wants something (or doesn't want it) there's always a reason. Nature does nothing without cause, and the FACT that medical science isn't advanced enough to understand the cause doesn't negate it.

      My personal thought is that it's a combination of things. We're short on micro-nutrients, the vinegar assists the body in absorbing those micro-nutrients. The US RDA (Recommended Daily Allowance) for calcium is 1000 mg, but how much of that is absorbed? Very little, in reality. If you get even half of that from your food you have an exceptional diet, and my understanding is that few of the nutrients in our diet are actually in a form the body can absorb. So naturally the body would crave anything that increased the amounts of USABLE nutrients and made it easier to absorb them.

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  50. Have you tried a Fire Water recipe? I love how social media offers an endless supply of great new recipes every day. There are many versions of the Fire Water but most include Braggs ACV with the "mother", add a bunch of things including turmeric, letting it sit a month or two to ferment, strain off the liquid and store in fridge for up to a year. Take a tablespoon a day. It's good for you, but it's so potent I get the chills each time I have some.

    I crave vinegar, mustard, sriracha... have been a lacto-ovo veggie for 51 years, but lactose intolerant. Sriracha makes
    my arthritis flare but I know the cause/effect so tolerate it better.

    Had three children and with the 2 girls during pregnancy craved a bland diet (instant mashed potatoes). With my son, lemonade, mustard, vinegar. So maybe cravings are hormonal. In fact, read about choosing the sex of your baby-to-be; you use alkaline or acidic douches. All very fascinating...

    I pick salty over sweet- could do without candy/bakery forever but don't take away my salsa and chips.

    I eat ice cream once a year at an ice cream social - okay with the taste but not worth the gut ache.

    Thanks for the interesting read. We vinegars/vinegarettas are the SPICIEST!!!

    Nothing bland about us!

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    1. Based on the fact that so many women crave vinegar during pregnancy and/or the cravings start with puberty, there probably is a hormonal aspect.

      No, I've never tried fire water.

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  51. It's almost 1am and had a craving for my fav: tomatoes soaked in vinegar, pepper, salt, olive oil & just a bit of mayo (just a bit). As I was preparing my mix, I was asking myself why do I like vinegar so much. I mean, ever since I can remember... with tomatoes my fav. But even as a child I would sneak to the kitchen, get an old milk gallon cap, fill it with vinegar, pepper & salt, hide in my room and enjoy the sour & tangy taste. So as I was doing this a while ago, I thought maybe it's a health issue or something missing that makes my body want this. So I googled and came across this post. And I'm just smiling and enjoying everyone's anecdotes & thinking it's nothing wrong. I too prefer sour/tangy/spicy/savory over sweets. Sometimes I get gastritis and have found that eating my tomatoes w vinegar alleviates & heals my stomach. I eat my fruit & drink the rest. And when I say I soak them, I really soak them. I too take my pickles w the juice. LoL. I'm not lactose intolerant but I do find that after drinking or eating dairy foods, I get a lot of mucus in the back of my throats which drives me mad cause I think I'm going to drown from it. Horrible feeling. So I have cut back on dairy products and have felt my throat more clear. It's so good to know you're not the only one with such cravings & to learn from everyone's experience. ����

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    1. Someone up above called us Vingees, and I LOVE that! Thanks for commenting!

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  52. I get through about a bottle of vinegar a fortnight - I put it into dressings etc. I also love pickes. I can't imagine drinking neat vinegar. Getting the acid / fat balance of food is a large part of making good food. Basically if its high in fat it tastes better with acid I believe the reason for this is that the acid helps to emulsify (or breakdown)the fat.

    lemon
    vinegar
    orange



    I also have no gaule bladder and think the vinegar appetite has something to do with it.

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    1. According to my research vinegar can also help prevent the absorption of fats and sugars in the digestive track. That might be part of it as well.

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  53. I just went sugar-free (refined sugar free), and just upped my running from once a week, to three times a week. I've never been much for vinegar, but siddenly, after running, I crave balsamic vinegar over greens, tomatoes & avacadoes. Any other vinenegar lovers big time runners?

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