Apple cider vinegar (ACV) is one of the latest "superfoods" to sweep the internet. The vinegar is commonly used in salad dressings and as a secret ingredient to liven up other dishes but there are so many more ways it can be used.
Step aside acai berries and quinoa, because apple cider vinegar is both versatile and healthy! ACV certainly comes in handy in the kitchen, but it can also help you out in many other areas of your life. From helping lower blood sugar levels to being a fantastic natural house cleaner, here are some of the most surprising uses for apple cider vinegar!
Soothes Pain From Sunburns
Sunburn is never fun for anyone. Next time you have one, you can feel better faster by relaxing in a bath with apple cider vinegar. Make a cool bath with a cup of ACV, 1/14 of a cup of coconut oil, and a few drops of essential oil to soak your pain away.
Alternatively, you can make a 1:1 solution of ACV and water and dab or spray it onto your sunburn. It doesn't smell the best, but you'll feel relief in no time.
Helps Ease Cold Symptoms
Apple cider vinegar just might be your saving grace the next time you have a cold. Sooth your sore throat by gargling a diluted solution of ACV and dissolved table salt. This will kill bacteria and help you feel better faster.
You can unclog a stuffy nose by sitting in front of a bowl of hot, steamy water that has ACV in it. The scent and steam will clear up blocked nasal passages caused by a cold, allergies, or sinus infections.
Reduces Heartburn Symptoms
Because apple cider vinegar is highly acidic, it might be useful to people who suffer from acid reflux and heartburn. ACV can increase stomach acid, which in turn will prevent back-flow into the esophagus.
Drinking a couple of tablespoons of ACV mixed with a glass of water before any meal will surely allow you to have a pleasurable dining experience. It also reportedly reduces flatulence and heartburn caused by a spicy meal.
Reduced Risk Of Developing Heart Disease
Could apple cider vinegar reduce the risk of developing heart disease? It's possible. Animal studies have shown that ACV reduces blood triglycerides, cholesterol, and blood pressure, which might be promising for future cases with humans.
The only human evidence so far is reduced risk of heart disease in women who ate salad dressing with ACV. But the fact that ACV also helps combat diabetes is a heart disease risk reduction in itself and is worth a try.
Lowers Blood Sugar Levels
Apple cider vinegar has been scientifically proven to aid patients with type 2 diabetes and those with high blood sugar. ACV works to improve the body's insulin sensitivity to meals that are high in refined carbs and sugars.
Just a couple of spoonfuls of ACV before bedtime can work wonders for you by morning. Be sure to check with your doctor if incorporating apple cider vinegar in place of blood-sugar-lowering medications will be safe for you.
Cleanses Skin And Reduces Blemishes
Apple cider vinegar is the best-kept skincare secret for some people with acne problems. The acetic acid in ACV is naturally anti-bacterial and anti-biotic. Not only can it cleanse the skin of dirt and grime, but it can also dry out blemishes and maintain clear skin.
Always be sure to dilute your ACV with water because putting ACV directly on the skin can be harsh. There are plenty of homemade recipes for facial toners that use ACV that can add extra benefits as well!
Kills Pesky Weeds Naturally
Apple cider vinegar is often used in organic gardens as a natural weed killer. The acetic acid is strong enough to kill weeds on contact, making them wither up within a matter of days.
However, some horticulturists say that this isn't as effective as pulling out the weeds by hand early on. They argue that while ACV kills weeds on contact, it doesn't necessarily kill the roots.
Relieves Itchy Scalps For Healthier Hair
People with dandruff issues have found an awesome natural remedy in apple cider vinegar. Washing your hair with ACV improves scalp health, while also strengthening your strands and enhancing shine.
Not only is it rich in vitamins, but ACV's antimicrobial properties also help relieve itchy scalps while its acidity can regulate the hair's pH levels. After cleansing and conditioning hair, just work a solution of water and ACV into your scalp and hair. After a few minutes, rinse.
Cleans And Softens Laundry
Apple cider vinegar is a great natural alternative to try on your next laundry day. It can practically replace detergents and fabric softeners that are chock full of harsh chemicals. ACV kills bacteria that build up in clothes over time, eliminating chemical buildup from synthetic laundry products.
It can also soften your clothes while removing static cling, lint, and pet hair. To try this, simpl add a 1/4 cup of ACV to a full load of laundry.
Help Kill Foot Fungus
Apple cider vinegar has been used by people who suffer from athlete's foot. The probiotics found in ACV can help to kill off candida yeast that causes fungus to develop on your feet.
You can soak your feet in a small basin of water that has a cup of ACV in it for about an hour. After a few nights of this, your foot fungus will start disappearing. Alternatively, you can make an anti-fungal spray.
Eliminates Body Odor For Some People
There are some folks who've completely replaced their everyday deodorant with apple cider vinegar! The acidity in ACV, when used regularly for this purpose, can regulate your skin's pH levels. This reduces the amount of odor-causing bacteria that accumulates on the skin over time.
While this has proven most effective for people who cleanse themselves with ACV from the inside-out, it has also worked for people who apply diluted ACV directly to their skin.
Spray It Around Windows To Deter Bugs From Entering
Help prevent bugs (especially spiders!) from entering your home with this next hack. Combine water and apple cider vinegar in a spray bottle. Spray around the edges of the window frames, both inside the house and out.
It's this easy to deter bugs from entering your home. And wouldn't you rather prevent them from going inside, than worry about how to get them out, once they're in there? All you need is a spray bottle, apple cider vinegar, and add water.
Refurbishes Furniture To Look Brand New
Apple cider vinegar can also make your furniture look brand new! You can make a natural furniture polish out of equal parts of ACV and olive oil. A bit of lemon juice can boost this mixture's cleaning power. Just rub down your furniture with it, then buff it away.
You can even extend ACV's use to make a natural wood stain. Soaking a piece of steel wool in undiluted ACV for a few days will create a rich brown stain for wood.
Makes A Great Mouthwash
Some people are even brave enough to use apple cider vinegar as a substitute for mouthwash. The taste isn't for everyone, but ACV has helped people who are sensitive to chemical mouthwashes.
ACV's antibacterial properties effectively help your mouth achieve that extra-clean feeling, while also eliminating microbes that cause bad breath. Just mix a tablespoon of ACV for every cup of water for a safe rinse. Concentrated ACV has too much acid that will damage your teeth if swished alone.
When Taken Daily, Apple Cider Vinegar Can Work Wonders For The Digestive System
We've already learned that apple cider vinegar can help with heartburn symptoms, but its benefits to the digestive system go beyond that. Proper stomach acid levels are vital for both nutrient absorption and for proper digestion.
Well, ACV can help improves your digestive health by upping healthy stomach acid production. Just drink one teaspoon of apple cider vinegar mixed with one glass (8 oz) of water once a day, preferably before a meal and you should notice digestive benefits within days.
The Many Benefits Of Acetic Acid
As mentioned earlier, ACV's active ingredient is acetic acid. We've learned that the acid can help with acne and even with housecleaning chores, but it has other benefits as well.
Acetic acid can help lower blood pressure, reduce inflammation, unclog arteries, keep blood sugar levels even, and generally keep your body's systems running smoothly. Another added benefit is that drinking it will give you an antimicrobial effect. Pharmaceutical versions of acetic acid are even used to treat ear canal conditions.