10 Health Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar
Most people know that apple cider vinegar is a great ingredient for cooking and that it has many uses around the house for cleaning. Fewer people know that apple cider vinegar benefits extend far beyond the kitchen. In fact, there are experts who swear by apple cider vinegar as a powerful factor in leading an all-around healthy lifestyle.
If you’ve heard people talking about it before and can’t help but wondering if apple cider vinegar is good for you, then you’ll probably be fascinated by this list of 10 health benefits of using apple cider vinegar.
1. Put an End to Dandruff
Those annoying, white flakes usually are the result of an excess of yeast or a bacteria. The regular application of an apple cider vinegar treatment can mean that those flakes are a thing of the past. There’s other good news too. Apple Cider Vinegar is highly acidic, and many times people who have problems with their hair have a scalp that is too alkaline. Rinse hair with a diluted solution of ACV and water as a substitute for conditioner, and many common hair concerns will fly away.
2. Soothe Acne
Raw apple cider vinegar can be used to kill the bacteria that are responsible for acne on the face and body. Regularly using a diluted solution as a toner may help people to experience fewer breakouts. Additionally, people who are bothered by scarring and skin discoloration as a result of acne may see these spots begin to lighten thanks to ACV.
3. Calm the Stomach and Intestines
People have used apple cider vinegar for centuries as a remedy for upset stomachs and diarrhea. Mix a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar into a cup of warm water that also contains one tablespoon of honey. Relief will come soon, and this natural remedy has no uncomfortable side effects.
4. Relief for a Sore Throat
One of the worst symptoms of any illness is a sore, scratchy throat. Most people think that they just have to live with it until the symptom subsides. However, mounds of anecdotal data suggest that people can experience relief with apple cider vinegar. The secret is that vinegar excels at killing germs, so it may be able to put an end to a sore throat soon after it begins. Try gargling with a solution that is equal parts ACV and warm water.
5. Breathe Easier
Apple cider vinegar contains a healthy dose of potassium, a powerful mineral that is essential to bone, muscle and digestive health. Potassium also has the effect of thinning mucus in the nasal region. Accordingly, increasing potassium intake may help someone with a cold or allergies breathe a little easier. Pour a teaspoon of ACV into a cup of water or tea to help eliminate congestion.
6. Bust High Cholesterol
Scientists do not always agree that ACV helps to bring down bad cholesterol numbers. Preliminary studies suggest that this is a possibility, but more research needs to be done. Still, people who are constantly struggling to keep their cholesterol numbers in check may benefit from adding apple cider vinegar to their daily routine. Researchers believe that it is the high levels of acetic acid in ACV that keeps cholesterol numbers in check. A couple of teaspoons of ACV in a drink every day may be enough to start seeing effects.
7. An Aid to Weight Loss
Thousands of Americans face a daily struggle with obesity. They know that being overweight may lead to a variety of health problems like diabetes, heart disease and even cancer. Accordingly, they make dietary changes and start leading a more active lifestyle. This often is not enough to get the results that their doctor would like to see. It is possible that apple cider vinegar may be able to help. Once again, this is one of the apple cider vinegar benefits that still needs more study. Theories suggest that the acetic acid in ACV acts as an appetite suppressant and that it inhibits the body’s ability to digest carbohydrates, which results in fewer calories being absorbed into the body. Adding a teaspoon or two to a drink every day may help some people to lose a bit of weight. For more on weight loss, check out our guide to the ultimate body cleanse.
8. Lower Blood Sugar Levels
The Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics published a study in 2005 that suggested consuming vinegar with a meal that includes a high glycemic load helped to prevent massive blood sugar spikes. Additionally, a dose of ACV at bedtime may work to reduce fasting blood sugar levels in the morning. Other studies suggest that insulin function may be improved when ACV is added to the patient’s daily diet. Anyone who needs to be mindful of their blood sugar levels may want to make ACV part of their routine.
9. Balance the Body’s pH
The acidity levels in the human body are measured on a scale from zero to 14, with zero being incredibly acidic and 14 being extremely alkaline. Optimal health requires an overall pH of seven. However, people tend to eat many acidic foods like meats and sugars that make the body too acidic. More alkaline foods like leafy greens and fruits are less likely to be consumed. Apple cider vinegar can be used to address this imbalance. Raw apple cider vinegar is best used for this purpose because it contains large amounts of potassium, which has an alkalizing effect in the body.
10. Boost Nutrient Absorption
Studies demonstrate that regularly consuming apple cider vinegar is a wonderful way to boost nutrient absorption. This is especially true in the case of iron. Typically, the body struggles to absorb iron from plant sources, which is why vegans and vegetarians often deal with low iron counts. Adding ACV to salad dressings or drinks is a wonderful way for the body to get more of the nutrients that it needs.
If you’re looking for more creative ways to use raw apple cider vinegar, check out our Apple Cider Vinegar and Tequila: 5 Yummy Cocktails! guide.