How to add acids to foods for added flavour

October 9, 2015

Even a little bit of pucker power from acidic ingredients can lower your blood sugar response to a carb-rich meal. Making foods more acidic slows the breakdown of starches into blood sugar, so your blood sugar rises more slowly. Go beyond vinegar with these tips for adding bite to your meals.

How to add acids to foods for added flavour

Adding flavour to your meal

Use mustard, which is made with vinegar, instead of mayonnaise on sandwiches, as a base to coat chicken and meats, and in bean dishes.

Eat that pickle with your sandwich. It gets its sour taste from vinegar.

Go beyond pickled cucumbers and try pickled tomatoes, carrots, celery, broccoli, cauliflower florets and red and green peppers. If you're at a Japanese restaurant, ask for oshinko (pickled vegetables).

Don't throw out the pickle liquid! It makes an excellent marinade, especially when mixed with a little olive oil and chopped fresh herbs.

Eat sauerkraut, which is pickled cabbage. Look for low-sodium varieties.

Squeeze lemon juice, which is also acidic, over fish and seafood. Fresh lemon juice can revitalize a lacklustre soup or stew, and it livens up green vegetables, rice and chicken.

Try lime juice on fish, turkey, avocados, melon, sweet potatoes and black beans.

Eat citrus fruit such as fresh grapefruit, which, as your tongue has already told you, is somewhat acidic.

Ask for sourdough bread. As the dough ferments, it releases lactic acid, which, like vinegar, has a beneficial effect on the food's GL.


Adding wine to your meal

Cook with wine.

  • It's acidic, too, and gives a tasty tang to sauces, stews, soups and roasts.
  • Try cooking fish in wine: sauté garlic (and onions if you want) in olive oil, add seasoning, then pour in some wine and reduce the heat. Add the fish and cook in the simmering liquid. Squeeze in a little lemon juice at the end.

Drink wine with your dinner.

  • It's another way to include an acidic liquid with your meal.
  • Drinking wine (as well as other alcoholic beverages) in moderation — a glass a day for women, up to two for men — can help keep blood insulin levels low and is linked with a lower risk of developing diabetes.
  • Moderate alcohol consumption also raises "good" HDL cholesterol levels and helps protect against heart disease. (If you have diabetes, check with your doctor first.)


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