Remember when Arizona Green Tea was the rage? Then along came energy drinks like Red Bull, which were followed by even more energy drinks with names like Monster, Everlast, and Rockstar Energy Cola. More recently Amazon nectars from the Amazon such as Açai from Brazil started showing up on the shelves. And then there are fruit-flavored vinegars.
Fruit-Flavored Vinegar Drinks are a popular drink in Japan that has yet to catch on in the United States and Europe. According to an article in the Japan Times from July 2005, many who drink the fruit-flavored vinegars find them refreshing and good stress relievers. And, lest you think that they are drinking them “straight-up”, the fruit-flavored vinegars are typically added to milk or water before drinking,
Apparently these vinegars are specifically made for drinking, unlike the apple cider or balsamic vinegars you buy in the grocery store here for instance. These regular types of vinegars are used in cooking, as marinades or mixed with olive oil to season a salad.
There are a number of shops in the Tokyo metro area, some carrying as many as 40 different flavors including litchi, mango, blueberry, raspberry, and pear. One store even has a self-appointed “vinegar sommelier”.
Just what are some of the benefits of drinking vinegar?
There is some evidence that drinking a small amount of vinegar can help you lose weight as well (see Fruit Vinegar Drinks: Recipe for Health). Preliminary studies at Arizona State University East in Mesa, AZ indicate that ingesting two tablespoons of regular vinegar before meals, especially high carb ones, seems to lower blood sugar levels. Earlier research in Sweden reached the same conclusions, but was based on eating pickles, which are made using vinegar. In addition, participants in the vinegar group lost an average of two pounds during the 4-week study, while those in the control group did not. Interesting.
Will fruit-flavored vinegar drinks catch on in the United States? Probably not, but if you want to add a daily dose of vinegar to your routine, try these one of these refreshing herbal drinks that use small amounts of vinegar in the recipes. It’s better than drinking it straight—at least until the drinkable vinegars head west.
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