Drinking apple cider vinegar (ACV) is one of the most popular health remedies among natural health experts because this tonic has such a remarkable array of health benefits.
It is also a simple solution that you can pick up for very little money at almost any natural food store. This makes it the cure-all of choice for many.
How To Select Apple Cider Vinegar
The first thing you need to know is the best type of ACV to buy because they are not all created equal!
You want to get a raw (virgin), naturally fermented, unpasteurized, and unfiltered version. Heat from pasteurization will denature the enzymes and proteins found in apple cider vinegar.
Further, you don’t want your apple cider vinegar filtered because the sediment you see in the bottle is the most beneficial part.
Although there are certainly other good brands you could use, Bragg ACV is a very well trusted brand and you certainly cannot go wrong if you purchase this one.
To choose between bottles, the more cloudy the liquid and the more particulates you see at the bottom of the bottle, the better it is!
This is called the “mother” and it contains both probiotics and prebiotics. It is the rejuvenating essence of apple cider vinegar.
How To Take Apple Cider Vinegar
While you can easily incorporate ACV into numerous delicious recipes, some people prefer to take ACV as part of a daily health regimen so they are sure to get a steady supply of this healthy elixir into their system.
It is best to start with one teaspoon in the morning before you eat or drink anything else. Try this for a week and if you don’t have any issues with it (most people do not), you can increase the amount to two teaspoons.
Gradually increase this to one to two table spoons (three to six teaspoons). Before you pour the liquid into your measuring spoon, be sure to shake the bottle good to redistribute the mother.
There is one precaution you should take when taking this liquid since it is a weak acid. All acids can damage your teeth enamel.
For this reason, some people sip their apple cider vinegar through a straw so it bypasses their teeth entirely. You can also immediately rinse your mouth out with water after you take it and then brush your teeth.
This will remove entirely the acid from your enamel.
What Are Some of the Health Benefits Of Apple Cider Vinegar?
ACV has such a variety of health benefits, a multi-volume book set could be written on this topic! However, here is a summary of some of the best known health benefits:
A Weight Loss Aid
If you are trying to lose weight, taking ACV is definitely something you should add to your daily routine. It will complement well all your other weight loss methods.
The pectin it contains will help to suppress your appetite overall and reduce those midnight cravings. It will also lower your body’s acidity.
Additionally, ACV increases your metabolism, helping you burn fat faster and more efficiently.
A Powerful Antimicrobial
If you feel a cold or flu coming on, add some ACV to your echinacea tea or mint tea once it has warmed down a bit or take it straight!
If you are already taking a daily regimen, double the amount until you are sure the bug has been eradicated. A good quality apple cider vinegar will help your body fight off both pathogenic bacteria and viruses.
Gargling with it will improve a sore throat. It can even help you get rid of stubborn nail fungus and warts!
Balance Your Gut Flora
A daily dose of apple cider vinegar will feed your good gut bacteria exactly what they need to flourish and outcompete the bad bacteria that can wreak havoc with your system!
It helps to establish the perfect pH in your gut too which helps to balance out your gut bacteria.
Stabilizes Blood Sugar
ACV is a diabetic’s dream! It directly helps with lowering blood sugar after meals and increases your cell membrane sensitivity to insulin overall!
Taking apple cider vinegar before bedtime helps with the dawn phenomenon too! Even if you are not a diabetic, these are excellent benefits because maintaining a more level blood sugar has positive health benefits for everyone.
Lowers Cholesterol and Triglycerides
ACV contains a powerful antioxidant called chlorogenic acid which has been show to lower blood LDL cholesterol by preventing it from being oxidized. LDL is the “bad” cholesterol.
Lowers Blood Pressure
Taking apple cider vinegar will lower most types of high blood pressure.
However some people see better results if they take baking soda (approximately one-eighth of a teaspoon) along with a tablespoon of apple cider vinegar.
The mechanism by which apple cider vinegar lowers blood pressure is not fully understood but it is thought to be related to apple cider vinegar’s ability to break down fat, thus making the blood flow more easily and thereby reducing pressure on the arteries.
Helps Relieve Skin Conditions
Applying ACV directly to the skin has many benefits. It helps to tone the skin and clear up acne and other skin irritations. If you are prone to acne, a daily application to your face can help prevent major breakouts.
Diluted with water, apple cider vinegar can also be used to relieve a sunburn and help it heal quicker.
Improve Your Hair
ACV will unclog your hair follicles and keep you hair shiny by removing buildup and toxins. It will also help with dandruff.
May Even Lower Your Risk Of Cancer
The jury is still out on this one but the possibility is too exciting not to mention.
The studies that have been done have been mostly on cancer cells grown in vitro (outside the body) but they do show that vinegar has the ability to retard the growth of cancer cells. However, studies on actual people are needed to know for sure.
There are many other purposes for apple cider vinegar that are not listed here including many health benefits to pets and applications in the garden.
Once you start keeping apple cider vinegar around the house, you’ll surely find many other applications.
For example, it can be used to stop the itching on insect bites which may not be a life-threatening problem but will surely be appreciated by those who are scratching!