You may have polished off the very last dill pickle, but don't toss the jar just yet. The briny solution left behind in your pickle jar is chock full of electrolytes, nutrients and antioxidants. Athletes have been drinking pickle juice to improve performance for centuries, and legend holds that Cleopatra sipped on the salty solution for beauty purposes.
In addition to finding all sorts of pickle-flavored food, pickle drinks are becoming more popular. There are many ways to use pickle juice, you can use pickle juice in cocktails and snow cones, or you can just drink it straight from the jar.
Here are 8 reasons you just might want to start drinking pickle juice, too.
1. Pickle juice enhances your workout.
There's a reason why so many athletes rely on pickle juice as a pre- or post-workout drink. As you sweat on the field, track, or workout floor, you lose sodium and potassium. Pickle juice contains calcium chloride and vinegar which can help the body more easily absorb these essential minerals, helping you hydrate and recover normal electrolyte levels faster.
The National Institute of Health notes that pickle juice can boost athletic performance and thermoregulation. With less sugar than a sports drink and the power to regulate your sodium levels, these are vital health benefits after an intense workout.
Try Pickle Juice Sport, the first trademarked pickle sports drink. We love it because it helps with all kinds of everyday aches off the court, from foot cramps to menstrual cramps in small amounts.
2. Pickle juice combats muscle cramps.
Research from Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise found drinking pickle juice stopped muscle cramping 37 percent faster than drinking water and 45 percent faster than drinking no liquids at all. For this reason, pickle popsicles are common for professional athletes and an easy way to cool down and reboot at the same time.
To relieve muscle cramping, males in the study needed only to drink about a third cup of pickle juice. Because dill pickle juice aids your body in water retention, you don't need large amounts of pickle juice to obtain its benefits.
3. It can alleviate PMS symptoms.
Just as pickle juice can help alleviate cramping for athletes, this magical elixir of pickle brine can help reduce PMS pains. Not only is it an excellent PMS remedy, but the brine solution can also settle an upset stomach with its good bacteria and high sodium content.
Bonus: Pickle juice can also tame the cravings for salty snacks that sometimes arise during menstruation and also helps prevent bloating when incorporated into a healthy balanced diet. We love fermented pickles for this very reason!
4. Pickle juice is rich in nutrients.
Pickle juice contains vitamin C and E, which help to protect the body against infections caused by viruses and bacteria.
By drinking pickle juice, you can give your immune system a boost.
5. Pickle juice can help with weight loss.
Drinking pickle juice daily may help you shed pounds. One study from Bioscience, Biotechnology, and Biochemistry found regular vinegar intake reduced body weight and body fat mass in subjects.
While pickles themselves might not be considered a regular health food, the bacteria in most fermented food can solve an array of health problems, from remedies as varied as solutions to control blood pressure to control blood sugar.
6. It might help you recover from hangovers.
The headache, dizziness, and cramping you feel after a night of heavy drinking may be due in part to dehydration. Drink pickle juice to rehydrate, replenish electrolytes and ease your hangover pains.
So fire up those pickle-back shots, y'all! Or picklebacks, for those familiar with the beloved beverage.
7. Pickle juice can regulate your blood sugar.
In a study published in the Journal of Diabetes Research, researchers found vinegar consumption can help regulate your blood sugar levels after eating.
By regulating blood sugar--especially for those with type 2 diabetes--pickle juice may be able to stave off heart problems, kidney damage, and other health issues.
8. Pickle juice can relieve heartburn.
This one is tricky. The vinegar in pickle juice may actually cause heartburn in some individuals, but relieve heartburn symptoms in others. The side effects will vary, so test this idea first in small amounts.
By drinking pickle juice, you may be able to reduce pain and other negative symptoms that may accompany acid reflux.
READ MORE: 7 Health Benefits of Pickles That'll Make You Grab a Spear
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