If you have a near empty pickle jar full of juice in your fridge, don’t throw it out. Because while we may have taken pickle juice for granted in the past as surplus liquid we didn’t need, its having a real moment in the food world, and it’s a discovery that looks like it will be around for a while.
Pickle juice is made up of just three things needed to keep pickles from going off: salt, water, and vinegar. While most of us have been busy throwing pickle juice down the drain, Forbes says athletes have actually been drinking pickle juice for years as a way to relieve muscle cramps that could develop after exercising. In order to test this, a report in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise says researchers induced cramps in male subjects, and then had them drink either pickle juice or water for relief. They found that pickle juice worked better.
Pickle juice has plenty of benefits
Pickle juice isn’t just a good post-workout drink. The electrolytes and salt that help you deal with cramps also help you stay hydrated when you’re exercising, because the very components in pickle juice are what your body loses when you sweat. Ileana Paules-Bronet of Little Things tried drinking pickle juice daily for one week, and in that time she confirmed that not only it it help alleviate cramps and soreness related to exercise, it also combatted bad breath.
The list of pickle juice pros goes on. Researchers at Rice University say pickle juice is full of, and because it is fermented, the liquid is good for digestion. The vinegar in pickle juice could help you lose weight — and if you drink pickle juice before a meal, that vinegar could also help you regulate your blood sugar levels. These benefits make pickle juice a great fat-free health beverage that can be taken every day, and the best part about this health tonic is that it comes free with every jar of pickles you buy.
Forbes says surveys predict as many as 245 million Americans will be consuming pickles, and the global pickle market will have a value of nearly $12.75 billion this year. And if you’re not keen on pickles, you could share them with someone who is, and keep the juice for yourself — that way you both win.
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