Vinegar is just like salt with endless ways to use it to brighten, enhance and balance foods. It comes in a variety of forms, each having a different taste and flavor. But those who switch to a plant-based diet may wonder if they can still use these vinegar varieties in their everyday meals.
So, is vinegar plant-based? Yes, vinegar is plant based. Vinegar is generally made from plant-based ingredients like grapes, apples and barley, all of which fit a plant based diet. However, there are some varieties that involve animal-derived ingredients during production and are not a good choice for a plant-based diet.
Below, let us try to learn what vinegar contains and whether you should actually add it to your plant-based diet.
Why Vinegar Is Plant Based?
Vinegar is an acidic liquid that is obtained through fermentation of plant-based ingredients like barley, grapes, apples or any other sugar-containing source. It generally involves no animal-derived components, which is why it can be classified as plant-based.
However, some brands and varieties of vinegar can use animal products during its processing, rendering it inappropriate for a plant-based diet. This is why you should always check the label of the product to make sure it contains only plant-based ingredients.
What Are The Main Ingredients in Vinegar?
Vinegar is a fermented food like kimchi or beer and can be made from any plant-based carbohydrate source. The main ingredients in vinegar are often a combination of fruits like apples and grapes or grains like barley and oats. While plain vinegar contains no other ingredients, some varieties are flavored with ingredients like seeds and nuts or herbs to improve their benefits and utility.
However, you should look at the label of the product to check the ingredients and make sure there is no use of animal-derived components. Sometimes, brands can add animal products either for flavoring or for easy processing, making the product unsuitable for your plant-based diet.
As vinegar is a fermented food, there are several health benefits associated with its consumption. Some of the most important health benefits of vinegar include improved metabolism, weight loss, cholesterol control and anti-cancer effects. Vinegar is also a great remedy for acid reflux and heartburn.
Vinegar is a great source of essential minerals like calcium, phosphorus, magnesium and potassium. Some varieties of vinegar are also rich in antioxidants, helping you reduce the risk of cancer and combat signs of aging. One tablespoon of vinegar contains about 3 calories, 0.3g sodium and no carbs, protein, fiber, fat or sugar.
Other varieties and flavors of vinegar can have a different nutritional profile depending on the ingredients used. However, you should always look for a variety that contains natural flavorings and plant-based ingredients to make it an ideal addition to your whole food diet.
So, should you use vinegar on a plant-based diet? Absolutely! This flavor enhances is quite near to plant-based food and can be used to cook and flavor recipes in your everyday meal. It is also low in calories and fat content so there is no need to limit its use. The only consideration is to choose a variety that contains no animal-derived components.