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Hi there! I'm on Day 9 of Whole30 but am afraid I might have to start over due to an overlook on my part. I have been so diligent in my planning and preparation. I even brought a hamburger patty and sweet potato to a Rangers' baseball game the other night! Anyway, today I was re-reading part of ISWF and saw the part about sulfites. I freaked out when I realized that the balsamic vinegar I've been sprinkling on veggies has sulfur dioxide. And the lemon juice I've been using has sodium metabisulfate. I am so upset!!! Is it going to require that I start over in order to experience the maximum results? I was looking forward to being 1/3 of the way through the challenge tomorrow:/ Thanks for the help!

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Keep going! The Whole30 is a learning experience and you're learning. I don't know how much the sulfites may have taken an edge off your experience, but you've got 2/3 more to go, so you're doing fine.

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Thanks Tom! I'm not experiencing any great changes yet but i know it's still early. Just hope I didn't sabotage myself with the sulfites but I know that I'm doing the best I can right now! I'll be more careful for the next 21 days(:

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So I just saw this and went to look at my balsamic, and it says the only ingredient is balsamic vinegar. But then underneath it says "contains naturally occurring sulfites"......so what does that mean?

Is balsamic ok, or not ok?

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Balsamic vinegar has naturally occuring sulfites because it's made from grapes. So if you have a problem with the sulfites in wine, you'll have a problem with balsamic vinegar. For some people, it can cause migraines (ask me how I know) but if I remember correctly, it's perfectly fine for everyone else.

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Yarg! I just came across this problem too... After dousing my salad in red wine vinegar I realized it probably had sulfites in it. Checked the label, and sure enough!

I'm only on day 5, so I'm going to see if I can find an alternative that is sulfite-free. I've never noticed a sensitivity to them, but I want to be as compliant as possible. I'm not a fan of ACV on salad, so hopefully I'll be able to find something else. The only other thing I've got in the house is white balsamic and that no good either.

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If it's naturally occurring, you can still have it. Wine vinegars are going to have sulfites because of the grapes. So you just have to look at the ingredients and see if the mention of sulfites are in parenthesis or not. If it says something like "Balsamic vinegar (contains sulfites)" then it's fine. But if the ingredients list something like "Cooked Grape Must, Wine Vinegar, Caramel Color, Potassium Metabisulfite" then put it down and walk away. I pulled that second ingredients list from a listing for Balsamic Vinegar on Walmart's website. 

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actually, as a home brewer, it's far more likely that the wine has sulphites, than the original grapes.  They are added to kill off natural yeasts and bacteria before adding a specialist wine yeast, and they can be added to stabilise the wine before bottling so that further fermentation doesn't occur in the bottle.

to make vinegar, an organism is introduced which converts the alcohol and some acids into other different acids.  So balsamic vinegars should be alcohol free, and sugar free, but not necessarily sulphite free.

 

you can of course make wine with naturally occuring yeasts, and processess it in such a way that you don't have to add chemicals at all.  balsamic from this would be ideal.

 

another option would be apple cider vinegar - as long as natural yeasts used, all sugars fermented, then all acohol turned to acid, should fine.

 

as with everything - READ THE INGREDIENTS LIST!

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20 hours ago, Ginsky said:

If it's listed as an ingredient that means it's an added ingredient and not naturally occurring so it's not allowed during your Whole30.  

I think that may be a little over-simplified in this particular case. A lot of vinegars will list the sulfites in the ingredients, but it's bracketed or in parenthesis, but those are naturally occurring. That's allowed. In the case of vinegars, just because the label says "Contains Sulfites" doesn't automatically exclude it. We would need a pic of the ingredients or an exact transcription of the ingredients in a post here to make a determination on a particular bottle. Here are some examples:

Compliant:

Balsamic vinegar of Modena (contains sulfites).

Red Wine Vinegar, Grape Must. Contains Naturally Occurring Sulfites.

Non-Compliant:

Burgundy wine vinegar dilute with water to 5% acidity, sulphur dioxide 

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My balsamic vinegar is Colavita brand. It's called "Balsamic Vinegar of Modena" and lists the following ingredients:

INGREDIENTS: Wine Vinegar, Concentrated Grape Must, Caramel Color. Contains Sulfites.

Is this Whole30 Compliant?

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Just now, Aflow said:

My balsamic vinegar is Colavita brand. It's called "Balsamic Vinegar of Modena" and lists the following ingredients:

INGREDIENTS: Wine Vinegar, Concentrated Grape Must, Caramel Color. Contains Sulfites.

Is this Whole30 Compliant?

Yes.  If it was listed like this it would not be:

INGREDIENTS: Wine Vinegar, Concentrated Grape Must, Caramel Color, sulfites.

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