Fermented foods are becoming very popular, and for good reason. They are rich in probiotics and enzymes and have highly bioavailable forms of the nutrients contained within the food or beverage being fermented. In this case, the health benefits of apple cider vinegar come from the mighty apple, and the results couldn’t be much more spectacular.
Apple cider vinegar may seem to be a new fad, but it actually has been used for thousands of years. Babylonians used it as a tonic in 5000 B.C., Egyptians used it in 3000 B.C., and Samurai warriors used it 1200 B.C.. Hippocrates also recommended apple cider vinegar over 400 years ago, so this fermented beverage is certainly in good company.
Nutrients Available in Apple Cider Vinegar
Apple cider vinegar contains more than 90 different nutrients and co-factors that make this a truly remarkable beverage for your nutritional needs. Check out this following profile:
- A good source of potassium and magnesium, and also contains calcium, chlorine, copper, iron, fluorine, and sodium.
- Contains vitamin A, B1, B2, B6, C, and E
- An excellent source of enzymes and probiotics.
- A good source of acetic, malic, lactic, and various amino acids.
- A good source of pectin and fibre.
- A quality source of electrolytes.
- A source of ash (gives it its alkaline property).
Of course, the level of each of these nutrients will depend on the quality of the product.
Apple Cider Vinegar Benefits
With its rich source of vitamins, minerals, enzymes, probiotic, acids, and fibre, it is little wonder why apple cider vinegar has so many health benefits. It balances pH levels in the body and is very antiseptic, anti-viral, anti-bacterial, and anti-fungal.
With all of these things in mind, take a look at some of its incredible benefits:
- Balances the inner ecosystem, the gateway to good health.
- Prevents and relieves indigestion
- Helps remove acid reflux
- Promotes bowel regularity
- Improves blood sugar balance
- Helps relieve allergies
- Helps eliminate sinus infections, sore throats, headaches, and flu
- Clear ups skin problems like acne, eczema, and warts
- Lowers high cholesterol and high blood pressure
- Destroys Candida and fungus, and populates the gut with beneficial bacteria
- Eases inflammation associated with arthritis and gout
- Increases stomach acid, which facilitates stronger digestion and nutrient absorption
- Overall detoxifier
- Facilitates weight loss
- Cleanses lymph nodes
- Cleanses the scalp and can help grow hair
- Soothes sunburn
- Eases varicose veins
- Provides energy
With all these benefits, it makes apple cider vinegar hard to ignore as a potential remedy to most of what ails you!
Apple Cider Vinegar Remedies and Practical Uses
So, how do you use apple cider vinegar? Turns out there are plenty of ways to use it so that you can enjoy the benefits without the unpleasant taste or burn that some people may experience. For those who can’t handle apple cider vinegar straight, you can put two ounces in one cup of water. But for those treating a symptom such as a sore throat or acid reflux, the treatment is faster and more effective with straight apple cider vinegar. Here are a few of its uses:
- Acid Reflux and Heartburn – Imbalanced stomach pH is mostly to blame for this condition, along with a lack of enzymes and probiotics. Apple cider vinegar contains all of these nutrients, and simply adding 2 ounces to a cup of water and drinking it up to 15 minutes before a meal will improve acid reflux. It will also work improve the digestion of your meal. To treat existing heartburn (as opposed to prevention), take a shot of plain apple cider vinegar (2 ounces). It’ll burn for a moment going down, but it does the trick without the side effects of conventional remedies.
- Colds and Sore Throat – Due to its antibacterial effects and probiotic content, apple cider vinegar is a nice 1-2 punch on colds and sore throats. Put 2 tablespoons in one glass of water, and take up to 3 times daily to help get rid of both. Gargle before swallowing. For a more potent treatment, you can also drink it straight. And for sore throat relief for those who cannot stomach it straight, try gargling with 2 ounces of plain apple cider vinegar and then drink and swallow two ounces mixed with water.
- Remove Warts – Put directly on wart and cover with a bandage. Leave on overnight and remove in the morning. Repeat for as little as 1 week or until you see results.
- Fight Seasonal Allergies – Apple cider vinegar breaks up mucous and and supports lymphatic drainage. It can also clear your sinuses. Drink 2 tablespoons in a large glass of water, 3 times daily.
- Ease Varicose Veins – Apple cider vinegar improves circulation in vein walls and is anti-inflammatory, so it reduces bulging veins. Combine it with witch hazel and apply with a circular motion. Look for improvements in a couple weeks.
- Sunburn Relief – Add 1 cup of apple cider vinegar to a warm bath, along with some coconut oil to ease sunburnt skin.
- Deodorant – Kills bacteria and yeast which is a major cause of body odour. Simply dab some apple cider vinegar on your fingers and run it through your armpit.
- Hair Wash – Apple cider vinegar corrects the scalp’s pH, and removes residue from it. Use 1 tablespoon to 1 cup of water in an old shampoo bottle and use as a final rinse, or you can get this excellent hair formulation.
- Skin Toner – The pH of apple cider vinegar makes it a great remedy for skin issues. Just rub some on the affected area and use coconut oil to moisturize afterwards.
- Teeth Whitener – Take your finger and rub apple cider vinegar on your teeth for a minute. Rinse with clean water.
- Household Cleaner – The anti-bacterial qualities of apple cider vinegar and its balanced pH make it a great household cleaner. Simply fill spray bottle with 50% apple cider vinegar and 50% water, then use as you would any liquid cleaner.
- Flea Repellent for Pets – Prepare a 50/50 apple cider vinegar and water solution and spray on your pets in affected areas. You can also prepare a tub and soak your pet in it once a day for a couple weeks to get rid of nastier infestations.
Apple Cider Vinegar Recipes
One of the easiest ways to add apple cider vinegar to your diet is to use it wherever you would normally use white vinegar in a recipe. Some good examples of how to use it as a more integrated part of your diet include:
- Homemade salad dressing
- Homemade ketchup or mustard
- Homemade mayonnaise
- A beverage consisting of 5 parts grape juice, 3 parts apple juice, and 1 part apple cider vinegar
It can also be used to make a homemade insect repellent and part of a tonic that can help rid your body of bacterial infections.
The list of health benefits for apple cider vinegar seems endless, but it is only 1 part of a healthy lifestyle. So tell us, what are you using apple cider vinegar for that works really well?
When purchasing apple cider vinegar for internal use, be sure to purchase raw, unfiltered, organic vinegar. We love Bragg’s Apple Cider Vinegar.
You can also make your own!
Homemade Apple Cider Vinegar from Scratch
10 organic apples
Two large glass bowls
Cheesecloth to cover the bowls or large mouth jars
Wash and cut apples into quarters. Leave out and allow apples to brown, and then put them into one of the bowls (or jar). Add distilled water, enough to cover the apples. Cover the bowl with the cheesecloth and leave in a warm, dark place for 6 months. A hot water closet works well. You can also store it in an attic or well house during warm weather months. Leave the bowl/jar to stand, covered for six months, stirring once a week. Retrieve the bowl/jar at the end of the 6-month fermentation period. There will be a layer of scum on top of the liquid. This forms from normal bacteria as alcohol turns to vinegar. Filter the liquid through the cheesecloth slowly into another glass jar. This can be done by holding the cheesecloth securely onto the first jar or using a coffee filter. Then tip it to let liquid through and into the second jar. Do this until all the liquid is filtered and transferred to the second jar and then leave it for another 4-6 weeks, again, covered with the cheesecloth.
Then your apple cider vinegar is ready to consume and/or store.