An apple a day keeps the doctor away, and so does a daily dose of apple cider vinegar. Apple cider vinegar is a type of vinegar made from apples and has a characteristic amber color.
Over the centuries, apple cider vinegar has been used for many purposes: making pickles, killing weeds, cleaning coffee makers, polishing armor, and dressing salads. Apple cider vinegar is also one of the most popular go-to ingredients in your kitchen, offering many natural health benefits.
It is rich in minerals, like potassium, phosphorus, calcium, magnesium, and copper, as well as vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, C, and E, bioflavonoids, and pectin. Moreover, due to its acetic acid content, apple cider vinegar helps your body absorb essential minerals from the foods you eat.
Here are the top 10 health benefits of apple cider vinegar. For best results, use organic, raw and unfiltered apple cider vinegar.
1. Controls Blood Sugar
Your body produces insulin to manage the level of sugar in your blood. The antiglycemic effects of apple cider vinegar help improve insulin sensitivity.
People who have insulin resistance should have a dose of apple cider vinegar with each meal. Mix one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar with one glass of filtered water.
Drink this three times daily to steady your stomach’s digestion rate, which in turn increases the time your body has to process new sugars and keeps your blood sugar levels more stable.
2. Whitens Teeth
If you are embarrassed because you have yellow teeth, apple cider vinegar is a cheap and simple way to restore your teeth’s natural pearly white sheen. Apple cider vinegar helps remove stains and kill bacteria in your mouth and gums.
All you need to do is gargle with apple cider vinegar every morning and then brush your teeth as usual. Regularly eating apples also helps, as the crunchy fruit scrubs your teeth like a toothbrush.
3. Treats Constipation
Apple cider vinegar contains pectin, a water-soluble fiber that promotes bowel movements. This makes it a great natural treatment for constipation.
Add two tablespoons of apple cider vinegar to a glass of water and drink it three times a day. You can add apple or grape juice to the mix to make it more palatable.
4. Promotes Weight Loss
Regular consumption of raw, unfiltered apple cider vinegar can also promote weight loss. Apple cider vinegar is a good source of acetic acid.
Studies have found that obese people who consumed acetic acid daily for 12 weeks enjoyed a significant decrease in body weight, abdominal fat, waist circumference, and triglycerides. The acetic acid also helps prevent buildup of body fat and certain liver fats.
5. Nourishes Hair
A solution of apple cider vinegar and water, mixed in equal proportions, makes a wonderful natural hair conditioner. It helps nourish the hair, giving it a shine and soft texture.
It’s also effective as a home remedy for dandruff. Apple cider vinegar destroys the fungus that causes dandruff and restores the pH balance of the scalp.
To treat dandruff, apply a 50/50 mixture of water and apple cider vinegar to the scalp, leave it on for 15 minutes to an hour and then rinse it out. Follow this remedy once or twice in a week.
6. Gives Glowing Skin
Apple cider vinegar can help treat blemishes, reduce wrinkles and tone your skin. For blemishes, apple cider vinegar is a good astringent. Soak a cotton pad in diluted apple cider vinegar and dab it on your blemishes to dry them out and help them heal.
To minimize the appearance of wrinkles and fine lines, soak a cotton pad in diluted apple cider vinegar and apply it to the areas you want to treat. It will help tighten and plump up your skin a bit.
To use as a toner, mix half a cup of apple cider vinegar with a cup of water and apply it all over your face. Regular use of this solution will help maintain the pH balance in your skin and prevent various types of skin infections.
7. Combats Leg Cramps
Many people suffer from painful night time leg cramps. Apple cider vinegar’s rich mineral content helps reduce the frequency, intensity and pain of leg cramps.
When cramping occurs, simply sip some apple cider vinegar diluted in a glass of warm water. Within a few minutes, the cramping will diminish. You can also add two tablespoons apple cider vinegar and a little honey to a glass of water and drink it slowly.
8. Treats Colds and Coughs
Apple cider vinegar is a favorite remedy for the common cold, cough or sore throat. Mix one teaspoon each of apple cider vinegar, honey and warm water. Adding some mashed ginger to this mixture further enhances its medicinal properties.
Drink one teaspoon of this mixture, three times a day, for relief from congestion, coughing and a stuffy nose.
Apple cider vinegar’s antiseptic properties make it effective against bacterial and fungal infections. It is useful, for example, in treating ear infections, bladder infections, candidiasis.
For an ear infection, rinse the ear with diluted apple cider vinegar. For a bladder infection or candidiasis, drink a glass of warm water and on teaspoons of apple cider vinegar every night until symptoms improve.
10. Lowers Blood Cholesterol
Research has shown that apple cider vinegar can help improve your blood’s lipid profile by decreasing the levels of triglycerides and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL) or bad cholesterol, while increasing the level of high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (HDL) or good cholesterol. This is especially important to manage or prevent complications resulting from diabetes.
These are just a few of the reported uses for apple cider vinegar. There are many more health benefits of this inexpensive kitchen ingredient. So next time when you go grocery shopping, do not forget to pick up a bottle of it so you have it on hand when you might need it.