20 Unique Apple Cider Vinegar Uses and Benefits

This article was originally published by our friend Dr. Axe

Organic, raw apple cider vinegar is one of my top natural health remedies that I use every day — along with coconut oil.  I recommend it to my patients and take it personally for several reasons, including detoxification, helping my body more easily digest foods and for a quick burst of energy.

Also, I include apple cider vinegar uses for personal care reasons like conditioning my hair, whitening my teeth and as a household cleaner.

Apple Cider Vinegar Benefits

New medical research also suggests that apple cider vinegar ingestion can help acid reflux, lower blood pressure, improve diabetes and support weight loss.

The benefits of apple cider vinegar come from it’s powerful healing compounds, which include acetic acid, potassium, magnesium, probiotics and enzymes.

Acetic acid has the ability to kill dangerous “bad” bacteria and at the same time, foster the growth of beneficial “good” bacteria. Because acetic acid kills unwanted bacteria when it comes into contact with it, it essentially acts as a natural antibiotic. This means apple cider vinegar naturally provides numerous benefits related to skin, digestion and immunity health without any side effects.

Additionally, apple cider vinegar is a good source of polyphenols. Research supports the role of polyphenols in the prevention of cardiovascular diseases, cancers, osteoporosis, diabetes and neurodegenerative diseases like Alzheimer’s.

What is the Use of Vinegar? Top 20 Apple Cider Vinegar Uses

Here are the top 20 reasons you should be using apple cider vinegar everyday!

1. Detox Your Body

Unfiltered apple cider vinegar is a liver and lymphatic tonic which can help detox your body.  It helps balance your body’s pH and stimulates cardiovascular stimulation, bowel motility and lymphatic drainage. For this reason, it’s one of my key ingredients in the Secret Detox Drink.

2. Natural Conditioner to Make Hair Shine

ACV can be used as a natural hair conditioner and makes your hair shine!  Take an old shampoo bottle and fill it with 1 tablespoon of organic apple cider vinegar and 1 cup of water.  Pour this on your hair after shampooing three times per week for best results.

3. Natural Teeth Whitener

One of my apple cider vinegar uses is as a natural teeth whitener. Take your finger and rub apple cider vinegar on your teeth for 1 minute.  Then rinse your mouth with water.  The pH of apple cider vinegar can remove stains from your teeth, which helps naturally whiten.

4. Can Treat Acid Reflux and Heartburn

Some of the main causes of acid reflux and heartburn are an imbalanced stomach pH and lack of enzymes and probiotics.  Apple cider vinegar is full of all of these nutrients. How do you take apple cider vinegar? Add 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar to a cup of water and drink it five minutes before meals to relieve acid reflux.

5. Can Kill Candida (Yeast) and Boost Probiotics

Millions of people around the world struggle with candida and yeast.  The side effects can be bad breath, lack of energy, UTI’s and digestive issues.  ACV contains probiotics and a type of acid that promotes the growth of probiotics which help kill off candida. Remove sugar from your diet and consume 1 tablespoon of apple cider vinegar three times daily as part of a candida cleanse.

6. Regulates Your Body’s pH

Apple cider vinegar contains acetic acid, which is acidic in nature but has a more alkaline effect on the rest of your body. Balancing your bodies pH can reduce your risk of chronic illnesses like cancer and can dramatically increase your energy.

7. Can Support Weight Loss and Metabolism

A study published in the Journal of Diabetes Care found that consuming apple cider vinegar could promote weight loss. There are several reasons ACV promotes fat loss, but one of those reasons includes that ACV reduces sugar cravings and improves detoxification.  Another study found that supplementing with the acetic acid found in apple cider vinegar reduced body fat in mice by 10 percent. A 2005 study from the Journal of the American Dietetic Association found that vinegar consumption with a high-carb meal resulted in participants eating/drinking 200 to 275 fewer calories throughout the rest of the day. (1)

8. An All-Natural Household Cleaner

The anti-bacterial properties and the balanced pH of apple cider vinegar make it a perfect household cleaning product. Fill a spray bottle with 50 percent water and 50 percent ACV then spray windows and counters for cleaning.

9. Soothe a Sunburn

One of my favorite apple cider vinegar uses is to soothe a sunburn. Put 1 cup of apple cider vinegar in a lukewarm bath along with ¼ cup of coconut oil and lavender essential oil to ease sunburnt skin.

10. Balances Blood Sugar and Improves Diabetes

Medical research has proven that the acetic acid found in apple cider vinegar can balance blood sugar and improve insulin sensitivity and insulin responses. (2)  You can receive these benefits through apple cider vinegar ingestion. Try organic, raw apple cider vinegar on salads or consume 1 tablespoon in water before meals.

11. Heal Poison Ivy

Organic, raw apple cider vinegar contains potassium, which can help reduce swelling and inflammation, improving poison ivy.  Reducing side effects of poison ivy is also one of the apple cider vinegar uses because it can help detox the poison out of your skin, helping poison ivy heal more quickly.

12. Repel Fleas on your Pets

Mix a 50/50 solution of apple cider vinegar together and soak your pet in a tub.  Do this one time a day for several weeks to rid your pet of a flea infestation.

13. Lower Blood Pressure

In a 2009 12-week study, they found that consuming apple cider vinegar lowered triglycerides and blood pressure significantly.

14. Fight Seasonal Allergies

Another amazing treatment of ACV is for allergies.  ACV helps break up mucous in your body and support lymphatic drainage.  It also supports the immune system and can clear your sinuses.  Put 2 tablespoons in a large glass of water and drink three times daily for allergies.

15. Kill Fungus on Toes and Skin

The anti-bacterial and anti-fungal compounds in apple cider vinegar make it a great natural remedy for skin and toenail fungus.  Simply rub on the area of fungus two times daily.  Also, using a mixture of coconut oil and oil of oregano is great for killing fungus.

16. Skin Toner for Eczema and Acne

The pH of apple cider vinegar makes it an excellent remedy for skin issues. Rub apple cider vinegar on the effected skin or use it as a wash — then put coconut oil and essential oils on the area to support further healing.

17. Ease Varicose Veins

Apple cider vinegar is excellent for varicose veins because it improves circulation in the vein walls and is anti-inflammatory, so it reduces bulging veins.  Combine apple cider vinegar with witch hazel and rub on veins in circular motion and you should see improvements in two weeks.

18. Natural Deodorant 

Bad bacteria and yeast are a major cause of body odor. The armpit can stay damp which also makes it a breading ground for bad bacteria. Simply dabbing some apple cider vinegar on your fingers and running it into your armpit can kill yeast and neutralize odors, keeping you smelling fresh all day.

19. Cure a Cold and Sore Throat 

Apple cider vinegar is the ultimate remedy to cure a cold and sore throat fast! Because it’s loaded with vitamins and probiotic-boosting acetic acid, it’s a great natural cure. Take 2 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar in one glass of water three times daily to cure a cold.

20. May Reduce Warts 

Put apple cider vinegar topically on the wart and then cover with a bandage. Leave on overnight and remove in the morning. You may see results in one week, but it could take longer.

This is only a few of the many apple cider vinegar uses and natural remedies.

Surprising Benefits of Apple Cider Vinegar

ACV has been consumed for around 5,000 years!

Historical records show that apple juice has been fermented into vinegar since before 5000 BC. Through the ages, apple cider vinegar has been used to stimulate circulation, aid in the detoxification of the liver, to purify blood, cleanse lymph nodes, and improve immune system response. In fact, Hippocrates often prescribed it for coughs and colds, when mixed with a touch of honey.

ACV is made in a similar way as other fermented drinks (kombucha, kefir and wine).

Like all fermented products, apple cider vinegar is made using active yeast that is combined with sugar. In this case, it is naturally occurring sugar from crushed apples. The yeast actually consumes sugar and uses this to grow healthy bacteria, which is how fermentation takes place. The best apple cider vinegar for therapeutic and health wellness should be made from certified organic apples. Pasteurization is not required, and is not recommended for people using it for health benefits, as this kills all of the delicate nutrients and enzymes. The acidity of the vinegar is enough to prevent unhealthy bacteria (including E. Coli) from developing. After the fermentation process is completed, the result is the formation of acetic acid, the main beneficial compound found in apple cider vinegar.

ACV can appear murky and have “cobweb-like” strings, but this is a good thing.

This murky brown appearance of ACV, as well as the strands of yeast that may be present, actually clue you in to the fact that the cider is of good-quality. These strands are bits of live yeast, and they are actually alive. These contain the bacteria that once entered into the body, provide various healing benefits.

ACV is extremely low in calories and sugar.

Although it’s made using sugar, the sugar is consumed during fermentation, so you barely ingest any of it in the finished product. ACV has about 3-5 calories per tablespoon, and a little usually goes a long way. So you wind up with a very beneficial drink for virtually no calories or sugar. In fact, one of the biggest benefits of consuming ACV is that it has a positive effect on blood sugar levels, helping to keep them stable and to reduce risk for diabetes or hypoglycemia.

ACV was first used as an a natural disinfectant (and still is today).

Vinegar is known to have anti-fungal abilities and  to kill harmful bacteria and pathogens, so traditionally people used it to clean their homes, bodies, and to fight off fungus from forming. Today, many people still use ACV — and other types of vinegar — for a wide range of cleansing uses.

What is the Mother in the Apple Cider Vinegar?

It is important to note that not all apple cider vinegar is created equally! To get the most out of using ACV, make sure you buy it raw and with the “mother” intact, which means it still contains the beneficial compounds including probiotics.

It is imperative that you select organic, unfiltered and unpasteurized apple cider vinegar to reap its many health and beauty benefits. Also, look for cloudy vinegar; this is the sign that the friendly enzymes and bacteria that promote healing have not been removed. The cloudy strands is what is referred to as the “mother” probiotics.


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