14 Medicinal Uses of Apple Cider Vinegar
Much has been written about the health benefits of apple cider vinegar, so it isn’t much of a surprise that ACV is a common staple in every kitchen, pantry or even the medicine cabinet! Here are some of the things ACV can help with.
Apple cider vinegar has natural antibiotic properties. It also contains pectin, which can help soothe intestinal spasms. To relieve bloating or help with digestion, have a few tablespoons of ACV mixed with water. ACV is also great for digestive issues caused by bacterial infection.
No one knows exactly how it works, but ACV is a quick cure for annoying and embarrassing hiccups. Just take a teaspoonful of apple cider vinegar mixed in water when those hiccups come.
3. Sore throat
Germs can't survive in the acidic environment vinegar creates. Mix 1/4 cup apple cider vinegar with 1/4 cup warm water and 1 teaspoon sea salt and gargle a few times a day.
4. Colds and sinus pain
ACV contains potassium which thins mucus. The acetic acid in ACV also prevents germ growth. Have a tablespoon of ACV mixed in water twice a day for colds and sinus pain relief.
5. Weight loss
The acetic acid in ACV suppresses appetite, ramps up metabolism, and reduces water retention.
Exercise and extreme stress cause lactic acid to build up in the body and cause fatigue. Interestingly, the amino acids contained in apple cider vinegar act as an antidote. ACV contains potassium and enzymes that are vital in relieving fatigue.
7. Leg cramps
Leg cramps can often be a sign that you're low in potassium. One of the many benefits of ACV is its high potassium content. Try mixing 2 tablespoons ACV and one teaspoon raw honey in a glass of warm water to improve your potassium levels.
In the process of balancing the body’s pH, ACV helps detoxify the body. Research has found that it specifically clear up the liver of harmful toxins and wastes. Additionally, ACV helps stimulate circulation. ACV boasts a variety of healing properties for the skin and blood, assisting in the elimination of harmful environmental toxins that build up in the body (especially in the liver). By flushing out toxins, ACV also helps improve natural blood filtration.
9. Acne & skin health
Apple cider vinegar makes a great natural toner that helps rebalance your skin. The malic acid in ACV contains antiviral, antifungal and antibacterial properties that keep the skin clean, balanced and acne-free. It also encourages the skin to heal itself. Just dab your face with ACV on a cotton cloth after washing to maintain clear and healthy skin.
Studies found that the acetic acid in apple cider vinegar lowers bad cholesterol. Half an ounce of ACV a day is generally recommended if you want to lower LDL cholesterol levels.
11. Blood sugar
Research has shown that when people with type 2 diabetes took two tablespoons of ACV before bedtime, they had lower glucose levels by morning. Another study showed that insulin-resistant individuals who drank a mixture of ACV and water before a high-carb meal had reduced blood sugar levels after eating.
12. Blood pressure
There is also scientific evidence that ACV may help lower blood pressure which, in turn, lessens the risk of heart disease. ACV contains potassium, which is known to help balance the body’s sodium levels and maintain optimal blood pressure. It also contains magnesium, which helps to relax blood vessels walls and lower blood pressure.
13. Cardiovascular support
ACV is also believed to contain the antioxidant chlorogenic acid (CGA). CGA has been scientifically shown to protect LDL cholesterol particles from becoming oxidized, a key step in the prevention of heart disease.
14. Candida overgrowth
While candida is a naturally occurring yeast, it can quickly grow out of control if the body becomes too acidic. This usually results from having too much sugar and processed foods, or if good bacteria is unbalanced from antibiotic use. Candida feeds off sugars and overgrowth can cause multiple health issues including poor memory, fatigue, headaches, depression, sugar cravings and yeast infections. As ACV is rich in natural enzymes, regular consumption can help eliminate candida from the body. ACV is also fermented with beneficial yeast that serves as a prebiotic for healthy bacteria in the gut, essentially helping reinoculate good bacteria and enzymes.
What to look for in ACV
When purchasing apple cider vinegar, make sure to choose a brand that is organic, non-GMO, unpasteurized, raw and unfiltered. Most importantly, select an ACV which contains the ‘mother of vinegar’ or simply the ‘mother’. These are ACVs that have a murky appearance because they retain an unstrained combination of beneficial enzymes, proteins and probiotic bacteria.
One important note to keep in mind when consuming ACV:
It is best to rinse your mouth with pure water after. Swish around your teeth especially, so as not to damage the enamel.
Tomoo KONDO, Mikiya KISHI, Takashi FUSHIMI, Shinobu UGAJIN & Takayuki KAGA. Vinegar Intake Reduces Body Weight, Body Fat Mass, and Serum Triglyceride Levels in Obese Japanese Subjects. Bioscience, Biotechnology, and Biochemistry. 2009; 73:8, 1837-1843.
Darshna Yagnik, Vlad Serafin, and Ajit J. Shah. Antimicrobial activity of apple cider vinegar against Escherichia coli, Staphylococcus aureus and Candida albicans; downregulating cytokine and microbial protein expression. Scientific Reports. 2018; 8: 1732.