An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Commentary Search

October Fitness Tips

  • Published
  • By Michelle Walker
  • 169th Force Support Squadron

Balsamic Vinegar Health Benefits

1. Antioxidant
When oxidation takes place in your body, energy is produced. This energy hampers the formation of free radicals. Free radicals are known to destroy cell membranes. They also manifest as premature aging, which hardens your arterial walls. The antioxidants found in balsamic vinegar destroy the free radicals and as a result, protecting your cells from destruction. The balsamic vinegar has also been seen to slow the process of aging.

2. Immune Booster
The grapes that are used in the formation of balsamic vinegar contain quercetin, which is a bioflavonoid with antioxidant properties. Along with having Vitamin C, the antioxidant also strengthens your immune system, thereby making it easy for you to fight infection inflammations.

3. Reducing Heart Attack Risk
Since balsamic vinegar contains low cholesterol and saturated fat, it is not harmful to your health or more so to the heart. Substituting dressings that have high cholesterol levels with balsamic vinegar will improve your heart health because unwanted fats won't deposit in your blood vessels. What's more, balsamic vinegar contains low sodium and this means reduced blood pressure and enhanced heart health.

4. Digestion Promotion
Balsamic vinegar also contains polyphenols which stimulate the pepsin enzyme activity in your body. Pepsin is a digestive enzyme that helps break down proteins into amino acids. Moreover, they assist your intestines to expeditiously absorb amino acids. Efficient absorption of amino acids makes it easy for your body to utilize repair and build cells. It also helps in the maintenance of the body's work.

5. Weight Loss
Balsamic vinegar can also be used as dressing for salads, hence a wonderful substitute for fatty acids like mayonnaise. Since this vinegar also contains calories that only come from the grapes' sugar content, it makes for a good weight control substitute. Balsamic vinegar is also known to keep you feeling full and for longer. Therefore, you will eat less food hence controlling your weight.

6. Diabetes Control
Research conducted revealed that consuming about three to four balsamic vinegar tablespoons will enhance your insulin sensitivity. The higher your insulin sensitivity is, the better your chances of controlling diabetes.

7. Bone Health
Acetic and pepsin help improve the absorption of important minerals into your body like magnesium and calcium. These two minerals are important in the formation of strong and healthy bones. Balsamic vinegar is a great source of both minerals.

Effective ways to stretch your calf and Achilles tendon:

· Stand facing a wall at about arm's length away.
· Stand with both feet facing straight ahead - parallel - not turned out, even a small amount.
· Put one foot on the wall at knee height. Press that heel toward the wall.
· Look down and see if the foot you are standing on is facing directly ahead. Make that standing foot straight, not turned out; not even a little.
· Do not lean toward the wall. Lift your chest until you are standing straight.
· Don't let your hip curl under or your standing knee or hip bend.
· Relax shoulders, and breathe.
· Hold a few seconds and switch legs.

Many people are so tight, that as soon as they raise one leg against the wall, their standing foot turns out without their even noticing it, and they round their back. Don't stretch wrong, allowing the tightness to perpetuate.

The closer you press your heel toward the wall, the more stretch. If you are tight, you will get a substantial stretch just getting close. The purpose of this move is not to touch the wall by any means possible, but to get a functional stretch and not automatically go to unhealthful positioning.