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How Is Vinegar Metabolized?

How is vinegar metabolized by the human body? Is the pathway used the same as for carbohydrates?

I can’t find any information on this anywhere else on the web. I’m hoping someone here might be able to point me in the right direction.

Thanks in advance.

Good question, I don’t know.


It enters the citric acid cycle as Acetyl-CoA. The reduction equivalents generated trough the decarboxylation are used for ATP synthesis in the respiratory chain.


Vinegar contains primarily acetic acid with some other trace acids as well. The amount of acetic acid is usually <10%. Acetic acid can be converted to acetyl-CoA and enter the citric acid cycle to be metabolized similar to carbohydrates.

Acetyl-CoA can also be used for other metabolic pathways like alanine and aspartate metabolism. The amount of acetic acid in vinegar is negligible, so don’t worry about this too much.

According to the Vinegar Institute, “most vinegars contain insignificant amounts of some or all of the mandatory nutrients required in nutrition labeling.”